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Cat Barber went blow for blow with Winthrop’s Jimmy Gavin in a game that was probably too exciting for Mark Gottfried’s liking. NC State did, however, escape with the 87-79 victory over the Eagles.

Barber sets career mark:
For Barber it the type of game he desperately needed. While he had been playing decent, he hadn’t had the type of dominant outing that would kickstart this basketball team. Tonight he was simply unguardable. He used his size and speed to create oppotunities, and when he got them he capitalized on them. Barber was as aggressive as we’ve ever seen him. His defender could never take a break and was constantly under attack. Barber was able to get to the line 22 times and converted on 19 of them. When he wasn’t fouled he shot 9-19 from the floor, finished with 37 points and dished out 8 assists. If NC State is going to be a factor, this is the Barber that will lead them.

Winthrop’s Jimmy Gavin is insane:
For Winthrop, it was Jimmy Gavin, the post-grad lefty with unlimited range and a silky touch. His 38 points were a game high and the real reason that this was even a game. Wintrhop actually had the Pack on the ropes a few times, but after Gottfried challenged Cody Martin to shut him down, he was unable to get clean looks and it allowed State to start to pull away. Please note that this was not one of those episodes where NC State gives up a career night to some nobody. This kid is elite and actually warranted a call early this week from Tom Gugliotta who informed Mark Gottfried that they better watch out for this kid.

Rowan Adding Value
You can see Maverick Rowan adjusting. He’s adjusting to the faster game. He’s adjusting to the physicality. He’s adjusting to the depth perception of shooting in a major arena. But game by game you start to see this kid feel more comfortable. Tonight he set a career high with 17 points on 3-6 shooting from 3 pt range. He sill has a lot of work to do on defense, but tonight he was a major reason that NC State was able to hang with Winthrop early on when Gavin was ‘all systems go.’

Cody Martin Finding His Role
Another major contributor in this game was Cody Martin. Looking at his 7 points and 5 board stat line you probably wouldn’t have guessed it, but he was great tonight. It was his defense that slowed down Gavin late in the game. We watched him closely when Gottfried switched him onto Gavin and challenged him with shutting down this elite scorer. What we saw was very impressive and disciplined defense. He was in the passing lane, deep in his stance, seeing man and ball and following Gavin over every screen. He is one of the two reasons that the Pack won this basketball game (the other being Cat’s huge performance.) Cody is carving out a niche, not only as a defensive stopper and a high motor role player, but as a leader. When Gavin got white hot and started to help Winthrop pull away, it was Cody who took it upon himself to shut him down. His focus, determination and leadership are things that this team needs worse than anything else, and if he can continue to provide that, State will be in good shape.

Next up is…
Next up for NC State is Michigan on Tuesday. The Wolverines are 4-2 with losses to Xavier and #18UConn. It should be a great matchup in the Raleigh.

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NC State Basketball

NC State Men’s Basketball is Tied for the 20th Most NCAAT Wins Since 2020

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According to College Basketball Report, NC State’s Men’s Basketball team is tied for the 20th most NCAA Tournament wins since 2020.

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Yes, I’m fully aware that all 4 of those wins took place in this years NCAA Tournament, but I don’t care. STATS ARE STATS!

ACC Teams with the Most NCAAT Wins Since 2020

1. Duke – 8
2. UNC – 7
2. Miami – 7
4. NC State – 4
5. Clemson – 3

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NC State Basketball

NC State’s Men’s Basketball Team Produced 2 of the MOST Watched Games of 2023-24, College or Pro

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The Basketball season is officially over, collegiately and professionally. Looking back at the data of viewers for Men’s & Women’s Basketball, as well as the NBA, the NC State Men’s Basketball team played in two of the Top-10 most watched games of the 2023-24 basketball season.

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NC State vs. Duke in the Elite 8 was the 2nd most watched basketball game of the year with 15.1 million viewers, trailing only Iowa vs. South Carolina in the Women’s College National Championship game. The Wolfpack’s game vs. the Boilermakers in the Final 4 ranked 9th, with 11.5 million viewers.

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NC State Basketball

DJ Burns talks keys to recent weight loss during Pre-Draft Workout with Pacers

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Pack fans have been wondering how after 2 years in Raleigh, DJ Burns finally figured out how to drop weight, and keep it off. He spoke to reporters during his pre-draft workout with the Pacers.

“Playing at the pace we played today. Doing the work we did today. I probably would have left out with a full body cramp a couple months ago.”

“Keep on improving my pace. Adjusting to the level and speed I’m going to have to play at, at all times.”

“Lots of running. Lots of figuring out which foods I can no longer have, which were almost all of them that I liked. So, just finding new ones that I do like that go along with the plan.”

“This is the third (workout), and I actually travel to Milwaukee tomorrow to workout with the Bucks. And then some more stuff being confirmed that I won’t speak on just yet.”

Burns has worked out for the Lakers, Pacers and Hornets up to this point.

Plus more…

Listen to the full interview above.

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NC State Basketball

DJ Horne reads his new children’s book “Why Not Me? Why Not Us?” to Wake County Students

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DJ Horne was a huge reason NC State overcame the odds to win the ACC Tournament this past season. Now he’s trying to pass on the ‘Why not us!?” psyche to elementary school kids.

Horne was at Jones Dairy Elementary to read his new children’s book “Why not me? Why not us?” to students yesterday.

This is a pretty cool moment for Horne, who attended elementary school in Wake County (Reedy Creek Elementary School). He now gets to go back and tell his story, in hopes of inspiring the next generation.

The book is based loosely on his life growing up, and the adversity he overcame to become a champion.

Pick up the book today at Amazon.

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