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NC State Basketball

Dome of Doom: Pack Must Look Forward

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NC State travels to enemy territory this Tuesday night as they face bitter rival UNC. The Dean Dome has been extremely unkind to the Pack since it opened in 1986. Carolina holds a 22-5 advantage over NC State and even more impressive Roy Williams holds a career record of 23-2 (28-2 overall). I must admit that Roy has done a great job of selling this game as a bitter rival that they must come ready to play. In all of the years that he has been at the helm his teams always seem to respect the rivalry and play hard.

This season UNC escaped PNC with a victory but just barely. State found a way to claw back into the contest behind some clutch three pointers and were a tip-in away from pushing the game into overtime. I am not sure what it is about the Smith Center that has caused murphy’s law to rear its ugly head towards the Wolfpack. Lets be honest though, UNC has had the superior program and quite frankly they have been more talented. There have not been many cases in the past 25 years where the Pack was actually favored to beat the Tar Heels. These are hard words for me to type because I hate UNC and believe that State belongs in the same category as them as far as athletic achievements. I also believe that State has done a much better job recently of developing athletes on and off the field of play when compared to Carolina.

Lets look at their basketball program in the recent seasons. They always seem to get the so called All-American recruit; however, more often than not it seems like these players never live up to the hype. It has been common place to see UNC lose games that they have no business losing, especially when one looks at the “so called” talent they have on their roster. Now I am not saying UNC is not talented but I do believe that when a player signs with North Carolina it seems that they automatically get a boost up on all of the recruiting websites. Would Cody and Caleb Martin been rated inside the Top 50 according ESPN if they signed with UNC? Would Malik Abu been Top 20?

If you want to compare UNC’s 2014 class to NC State’s 2014 class I think its obvious that State’s class has been more impressive this season. Joel Berry and Theo Pinson are averaging under 4 points per game and were not contributing before both suffered injuries that have held them out as of late. Justin Jackson was the highest rated recruit of these three and had been solid but has not been a game changer in my opinion. I would take Cody and Caleb over Jackson any day. I think either one of them can shut down Jackson given their much superior build and athleticism. I can start to see that NC State is beginning to catch up to UNC. I would also argue that the Wolfpack is better set up for the next few years as our last two recruiting classes have seemed to show great improvements this season. Look at the play of Cat Barber, BeeJay Anya, and Trevor Lacey. I throw Trevor in because our coaches indeed had to recruit him to enroll with the Pack. Looking ahead at next season NC State stands to return the core of our team and add in highly touted transfer Terry Henderson.

The only way State can argue that they are a program on the upswing and not the red headed step child of Tobacco Road is to win! We have shown the ability and have had good results against Duke and UNC at home; since Gottfried arrived on campus. But we must not be satisfied with being competitive with theses two schools. There is no reason why NC State cannot rise to the same heights of these two prestigious programs. We too have a rich history (Multiple NCAA Championships) and will always first and foremost be a basketball school (Sorry Coach Doeren). Our athletic department with Dr. Yow at the head have put the required resources into the basketball program to put us on equal footing with any program in the country. The Dail Center is a state of the art practice facility equipped with all the resources to help our student athletes reach their full potential. The PNC Arena is one of the best venues in both the college and pro ranks. Few if any schools in the country have more to sell than NC State.

These reasons are why I can confidently predict that State is going to surpass UNC in the coming seasons on the basketball court. I honestly think that State is a better team this season than UNC. It has to first start with the belief and swagger to leave the past where it belongs…in the past. State has to come out this Tuesday night and assert their dominance and take away the Tarheel faithful by playing with a fiery desire. There is no reason why the Wolfpack cannot walk away with a win this Tuesday. A win would do wonders for the Pack not only mentally but will add another quality win to our NCAA resume.

Tip-Off is slated for 8PM. You can catch all of the action on ACCN/Raycom.

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Real_Pack_Man
Real_Pack_Man
9 years ago

The second-to-last paragraph is clutch.  Beating UNC and Duke will always be fun, and there’s nothing wrong with valuing a victory over those guys as ‘special’ above the others.  We just have to make sure that the athletes can get just as amped for a Boston College or Syracuse as they are for a UNC or Duke.

NC State Basketball

NC State & Kansas Will Play a Home-and-Home Series Over the Next 2 Seasons in Men’s Basketball

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According to Matt Norlander, NC State and Kansas have agreed to play in a home-and-home series over the next two seasons in Men’s Basketball.

The Wolfpack have played the Jayhawks 13 times in a series that date backs to 1958-59, with Kansas winning 12 of them. NC State’s lone victory over Kansas was in the first game ever played between the two on December 20th, 1958. The 4th ranked Wolfpack won 66-63 in the Dixie Classic in Reynolds Coliseum.

The last time the two teams faced one another was in 2022-23, when the #3 Jayhawks defeated the Wolfpack 80-74 in the Battle for Atlantis on November 23, 2022.

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NC State Basketball

NC State is Adding UMASS’ Brett Nelson as an Assistant Coach

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According to reports, NC State is adding UMASS’ Brett Nelson as an Assistant Coach.

Nelson was only at UMASS for 1 season under Frank Martin. Prior to that, Nelson was the Head Coach at Holy Cross for 4 seasons, posting a 27-84 record.

Prior to taking the Head Coaching mantle at Holy Cross, Nelson was at Marquette for 5 seasons, spending the first 3 as an Assistant Coach, and the final two as an Associate Head Coach. Prior to Marquette, Nelson also served as an Assistant Coach at Ball St., Drake, Arkansas and Marshall.

Before coaching basketball, Nelson played for the University of Florida from 1999-2003. He was All-SEC twice, and earned Third Team All-American honors. When he left Gainesville, he was the Gators’ all-time leader in three pointers made, and ranked 2nd in steals.

As a Senior in High School, Nelson was a McDonald’s All-American.

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NC State Basketball

Ernest Ross Announces He is Returning to NC State

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Power Forward Ernest Ross announced this morning that he is returning to NC State for his final year of eligibility.

 

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Last Friday, Ross committed to UTSA after entering the Transfer Portal on April 17th, but it looks like he had a change of heart over the past couple of days.

NC State has been in desperate need to add a Big out of the Portal. They have hosted ECU’s Ezra Ausar and Georgia’s Frank Anselem-Ibe, but neither of them have found a home yet. With the addition of Ross, NC State has added depth in the Frontcourt, and unless something changes, their roster is full with 13 scholarship players.

Ross played in 14 games this past season, averaging 3.4 minutes per contest. After playing in 34 games last season, averaging 11.4 minutes per contest, Ross saw his participation dip to a career low this season, but that didn’t for a second break his infectious personality. On the sideline, you could count on Ross every single game to be the heart and soul of the Wolfpack on the bench. To watch a player who played as little as he did, care as much as he did, makes me super proud that this young man represented NC State so well.

Ross was a consensus 4-star player in NC State’s 2021 recruiting class, with 247Sports ranking him as the #60 overall player nationally. ESPN ranked him as the #5 overall player in the state of Florida.

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NC State Basketball

A Matchup Between NC State & Marquette Next Season Might be in the Works

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According to NCAA.com’s Andy Katz, a matchup between NC State and Marquette next season might be in the works.

This past year, the Wolfpack defeated the Golden Eagles 67-58 in the Sweet 16 of the 2024 NCAA Tournament.

NC State and Marquette have played one another 6 times overall, with the Wolfpack holding a 4-2 lead in the series, winning the past two matchups.

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