Connect with us

NC State Basketball

Gameday: State Looks To Keep Moving Forward Vs. Central

Published

on

NC State vs. NC Central
7PM | RSN | Raleigh, NC

The Wolfpack may not have blown out Campbell last week, but they continued to improve and answered serious questions on who and what they’ll be.

Tonight vs. Central they’ll need to keep that up. TJ Warren and Tyler Lewis have been as advertised, so there is only so much we can say about them. They’ve been great, the heart and foundation of the team this season. However, after those two there was nothing but questions coming into the season.

Dez Lee was the first to step up and make a stand. The Juco transfer has made it absolutely clear that he’s going to be a factor this season. His ability to score in transition, create his own shot and defend the opponent’s top scorer has him locked in as one of Gottfried’s top guys. Then you have Cat Barber who took a big step forward against Campbell. He has continued to improve on shot selection, game management and decision making and will soon be a superstar for this team. Ralston Turner is also a guy who we’ve seen inching closer and closer to being ready. He’s scoring ability is there and his defense is pretty good, however Gottfried is teaching him shot selection and how to know when a good time is to just pull up during an offensive set.

Then there are the bigs. This is an area currently under construction. Who will step up, who will get minutes? So many questions. As of now we know that Freeman is in the rotation. The guy is a ball of energy on the blocks. He may not be  polished but he is strong and he fights. The battle for minutes is heating up between Beejay Anya and Kyle Washington. Early on it looked like Washington had the gig won out, but an inability to rebound and defend on a high level has opened the door for Anya who seized the opportunity against Campbell. His lane presence was phenomenal and he’s slowly but surely rounding into shape.

With that said…here is what we’re looking for in today game:

1) Can Barber continue to show floor leadership?
I’d like to see State get a big lead and sit Lewis for a bit. Lewis is the starting PG and State is only going as far as he and Warren will take them, but they need Cat badly and they need him ready. The more time he can get with training wheels off (Lewis out of the game), the better he’ll be. He needs to learn how to run this team when Lewis is in foul trouble or out for any reason.

2) Who is the real Beejay Anya?
Is it the slow guy who seemed lost in the first few games or the dominant rim defender from last time out. I think he’s coming around and I think we’re just seeing the tip of the iceberg, but I guess we’ll learn more tonight.

3) Will we see the defense take a step up?
The first few games are for comfort. Start to get a feel for this big stage, get back in the rhythm of the season, learn your roles. All that happens, but after a while it becomes business time. No more playing around with lineups, no more flashy highlights, no more taking plays off. It’s starting to get to that point and NC State needs to show their identity. With the scrappy bunch they have I think you may see this team morph into a defensive team. They have the athletes, the have the on the ball defenders, they just need to learn to play team defense. I’ll be watching tonight to see if they get this concept. Is everyone either on the ball, in deny or in help defense? Are they talking/communicating?  Are they taking pride in that part of the game? It’s time to start focusing on where you’re going to make your money. Who is this team and what will they be known for?  I’ll be looking to get that answer sometime soon.

 

Notes on Central: They are 2-1 with a win over Campbell (by 19) and a loss to Cincy by 13.

Click to comment
Subscribe
Notify of
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

NC State Basketball

Jersey Numbers for 2024-25 NC State Men’s Basketball Team Revealed

Published

on

The NC State Men’s Basketball team revealed the Jersey Numbers for their 2024-25 team yesterday.

Image

Numbers that are Staying the Same

Michael O’Connell – #12

Ben Middlebrooks – #34

Dennis Parker Jr. – #11

KJ Keatts – #13

Jordan Snell – #22

Numbers that have Changed

Jayden Taylor – #1 –> #8

Breon Pass – #10 –> #4

Numbers of New Players

Mike James – #0 (He wore #0 at Louisville last year)

Brandon Huntley-Hatfield – #1 (He wore #5 at Louisville last year)

Paul McNeil – #2 (He wore #2 in High School last year)

Dontrez Styles – #3 (He wore #0 at Georgetown last year)

Trey Parker – #5 (He wore #5 in High School last year)

Marcus Hill – #10 (He wore #0 at Bowling Green last year)

We don’t know what number Ismael Diouf will be wearing at NC State next year yet. 

 

 

Continue Reading

NC State Basketball

Kareem Richardson Promoted To Associate Head Coach at NC State

Published

on

RALEIGH, N.C. – NC State men’s basketball head coach Kevin Keatts announced Wednesday that assistant coach Kareem Richardson has been promoted to associate head coach effective immediately.

“I’m proud to promote Kareem to associate head coach,” Keatts said. “He is a valuable member of my staff and has really enhanced NC State both in his relationship with our players and staff, but also his ability to teach, scout and game plan. He is a well-rounded coach that has an impact on every facet of our program, and I feel fortunate to have him as part of my staff.”

The upcoming 2024-25 season will be Richardson’s third at NC State. The Pack has earned bids to the NCAA Tournament in both seasons Richardson has been on staff, including last season when NC State won the ACC Championship and advanced to the Final Four.

NC State has had three different guards (DJ Horne, Jarkel Joiner and Terquavion Smith) earn All-ACC honors under Richardson’s tutelage.

Richardson was previously head coach at UMKC for 2013-19 and has been an assistant coach at power conference programs such as Louisville, Xavier and Clemson in his 25-year coaching career.

Continue Reading

NC State Basketball

WATCH: Getting to Know NC State’s Dontrez Styles

Published

on

NC State Men’s Basketball is releasing videos helping fans get to know the new players on the 2024-25 roster.

Below is the video of Georgetown Transfer Forward Dontrez Styles (6’6″/212), with a transcript underneath.

I’m Dontrez Styles, a transfer from Georgetown University. I knew where I wanted to be. At the end of the day, I knew I wanted to come back home and play for a guy like Keatts. That was the main thing for me.

Being back home is amazing. My family can see me play every game now. An hour from Kinston, North Carolina. It’s a small city. I love it. Just growing there. A lot of great guys. A lot of great basketball players. My family is there. It’s my life.

I grew up in the Brandon Ingram era, so I went to every Kinston High School game. Just seeing him play motivated me to get in the gym and keep working. The grind has paid off.

It’s crazy. I would have never imagined this happening. It’s very rare for someone to go to North Carolina and NC State. Me being one of the first guys to do that, I believe it’s different, but I’m enjoying it so far. I can’t wait to get started.

Coach (Levi) Watkins recruited me when he was at Ole Miss. He’s been with me since my Sophomore year, I believe. Just having that relationship with them makes it easier every day.

Just being back, it’s going to be very fun, especially now. The hype is crazy. I can’t wait to be back home and get started, and hopefully win that National Championship.

_______

Styles was the 2nd leading scorer for Georgetown this past season, averaging 12.8 points per game, while grabbing 5.8 boards. He shot 36.8% from three.

Originally, Sytles was a consensus 4-Star prospect in UNC’s 2021 recruiting class. 247Sports ranked him as the #62 overall player nationally, and the #2 player in the state of North Carolina, playing for Kinston High School.

After two seasons with the Tar Heels, Styles entered the Portal, and took an Official Visit to NC State and Georgetown, and ultimately chose the Hoyas.

Styles will be spending his final year of eligibility with NC State.

Continue Reading

NC State Basketball

WATCH: Getting to Know NC State’s Mike James

Published

on

NC State Men’s Basketball is releasing videos helping fans get to know the new players on the 2024-25 roster.

Below is the video of Louisville Transfer Guard Mike James (6’5″/200), with a transcript underneath.

I last played at the University of Louisville. I spent three years there. Played two. Redshirted my first year because of injury. I enjoyed my time there, but all good things got to come to an end, and I’m here at North Carolina State. 

Entering the Portal is just like going through High School recruitment again. You’re getting your phone blown up every other hour, every single day. You’ve got to get on long phone calls. You’re kind of going through the process again, but this time, you kind of know what you want. You’ve been through College Basketball, so you know what questions to ask, what to expect, and you kind of just get straight to the point. I feel like the process was similar, but different this time. It went a lot quicker, and I knew exactly what I wanted. I want to win at the end of the day. Playing time is earned, and all that stuff. You’ve got to come in here and take care of that. 

Winning is very important, and I haven’t done that so far, but that’s the one thing I want to change about my college career. Seeing y’all go on that run was really appealing to me. 

I like to get to the basket. Draw fouls. Finish at the rim. Knock down shots on the perimeter. Defend 1-4 positions on the other end. 

I want to come in and win. I want to be a leader for our team. I’m an older guy now, so I want to be a leader. I want to come in and win another ACC Championship, and make another NCAA Tournament run. 

_______

This past year, James averaged 12.6 points per game (3rd on the team) and 5 rebounds. He’s extremely physical and aggressive, taking 47% of his field goal attempts at the rim (making 46%). As a result, he draws a lot of fouls, ranking 10th in the ACC in Fouls Drawn, and 4th in Free Throw Rate. James made opponents pay this year when they put him on the line, making 81.8% from the charity stripe, which ranked 15th in the ACC.

James shot the ball better as a Redshirt Freshman, than he did this past season. His Effective Field Goal Percentage in 2022-23 was 55.8%, which ranked 19th in the ACC, and his True Shooting Percentage of 59.6% ranked 14th.

News broke about James entering the Transfer Portal back on March 25th, and NC State was quick to reach out. Kevin Keatts and his staff recruited the former 4-star prospect out of high school heavily, but he ultimately chose the Cardinals.

After redshirting his first year in Louisville due to torn achilles, James has been a starter for the Cardinals the past two years.

He does have the ability to knock down a three, making 34.8% for his career.

James has 2 years of eligibility remaining.

Continue Reading