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NC State Basketball Thursday Web Run (12/12)

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To be honest, there’s not too much news to report on State sports right now. It’s the notorious slow period around the holidays, but there are a few nuggets floating around out there. Here they are with a few little takeaways from us.

 

– N&O: Jordan Vandenberg Emerges
Barry Jacobs has a nice piece out on Jordan in the N&O. It’s pretty spot on talking about injuries, logjams at the position and a weight problem that was holding the 7’1 Aussie back. I really think a lot of it was confidence issues that aren’t discussed in the article. Fans were pretty critical of Vandenberg every since he raised expectations with a between the legs dung in his dunk contest appearance as a freshman. He played well in his early chances to spell Tracy Smith, but nothing ever came of it. Jacobs does hit on the fact that Gottfried grew tired of him being content as a backup, which is warranted because he did get way out of shape there for a while. With the weight gain came some real confidence problems. He looked nervous and lost every time he touched the ball last season. This year he’s reshaped his body and is finally living up to (and exceeding) the Pack’s expectations for him.

Key Quote:  “I’m not trying to play for my own personal glory,” he said repeatedly during an interview this week. “I’m trying to get my team somewhere.”

 

– We were the first to break the news that the Holt brother’s construction company was going to be renovating Reynolds coliseum in the near future and recently a new mock-up of the proposed space has started floating around. The space is pretty much the same on the sides, however in the endzone it looks like they’ll have a glass area, probably for recruits or VIPs. The only problem people seem to be having here is the cost. Looks like State will be dumping $40 million into this project. Sounds like a bit much, does it not?

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USA Today: Sidney Lowe Pleads Guilty to Tax Charges
Now on to the bad news. Our boy Sid has taken another fall. This makes me pretty sad, to be honest. I loved Sid, I loved the story of him coming back to save NC State as a head coach. Sadly, it was a crash and burn type scenario from there on out. His teams were pretty undisciplined and he just wasn’t quite ready to handle the duties of a college head coach. That was sad, but I still applauded the fact that he stepped up when no one else would. But now we find out he hasn’t been paying his taxes. Yikes. But hey, we still love Sid, don’t we? I mean, he was part of the most storied year in the history of NC State. See what winning will do for you!?

 

– Lorenzo Brown getting some major minutes for Philly. As you probably already know, Brown was cut by the T-Wolves (the team with 1000 point guards) and picked up by the 76ers. Last night for example, Brown logged 19 minutes, scored 4 points and dropped 6 dimes. The one blemish? 5 TOs. Zo is going to have to cut the TOs down if he wants to stick with Philly for the long term, however they really don’t have too many other options.

 

– Next up for the Pack is the 5-5 Detroit Titans. The game is this Saturday at 6pm. It’s on ESPN3 and being played at Reynolds Coliseum.

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NC State Basketball

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

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

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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. 

 

 

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Kareem Richardson Promoted To Associate Head Coach at NC State

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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.

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WATCH: Getting to Know NC State’s Dontrez Styles

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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.

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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.

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WATCH: Getting to Know NC State’s Mike James

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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.

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