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Gameday: NC State vs McNeese State Keys to the Game

NC State Basketball

Gameday: NC State vs McNeese State Keys to the Game

NC State vs Mcneese St.
7pm | PNC Arena | ACC Network Extra (ESPN3)

Tonight NC State faces off against McNeese St. in what is their second to last non-conference tune-up before the ACC season starts. So what are the keys to the game for NC State?

1. Attack the rim…

NC State needs to move the ball side to side and attack the rim with purpose, by getting the ball inside they will be able to overmatch the Cowboys. Malik Abu and Omer Yurtseven will have a tremendous advantage on the interior as McNeese State will not be able to match up with their size and skill. Dennis Smith and company need to exploit this advantage early by getting the ball inside. NC State had great success aginst Fairfield by running their offense inside out which yielded a high shooting percentage from three.

2. NC State needs to leverage their size advantage on defense…

The Cowboys lack size, NC State needs to use their size and athletic guards to smother and force them into contested shots and turnovers. By creating turnovers and poor shots the Wolfpack should be able to score quickly in the open court. Jamaya Burr’s quickness allows him to penetrate; however, NC State’s guards must take the challenge to prevent this. Burr will test Dennis Smith’s discipline on defense because he will have to be in a stance to keep him from driving. The Pack should be able to notch another stress-free win as they use their size to overwhelm the Cowboys.

3. Dennis Smith needs to continue getting everyone else involved…

Dennis Smith is the only NC State player to score in double figures every game this season; however, he must keep getting others involved. In his last two games he is averaging 19.5 PPG, 7.5 APG, and shooting 61% from the field. The addition of Omer Yurtseven has helped Smith because he creates space and does the little things off the ball. Recently, Smith has been efficient since he has been crisp in calling his own number or deferring to his teammates. By allowing Henderson, Abu, and Dorn to get going early, Smith has had cleaner looks as the game progresses. Experience will help Smith find the right balance of scoring and distributing.

4. Be decisive and continue to play…

By not hesitating NC State has started to gain some continuity on offense that has led to some efficient scoring. Terry Henderson must build upon his last game as he was surgical in his offensive moves aginst Fairfield. Gottfried had to like Henderson attempting 6 free throws in addition to hitting threes. NC State’s big men made quick decisions in the post and tallied 9 dimes on the day. McNeese State will not stand a chance of winning especially if State continues to react in their offensive sets.



  1. wolfpack74

    December 23, 2016 at 2:57 am

    Yurtseven not fitting in well enough to defeat Miami. Mav looks to be coming around quickly. Love the jumping ability of Kirk. He needs to work with the first team more. His defense is picking up but looses focus sometimes.

    • Wolfer96

      December 23, 2016 at 3:27 am

      Kirk won’t get better coming off the bench with a minute left in the game. Luckily the large lead allowed him to get in early this game but yeah he should be getting more minutes. It was funny to see him jack up a 3 as soon as he got in with no rebounders under the basket. That’s what guys do when they don’t know when they’ll see the court again.

    • Wolfer96

      December 23, 2016 at 3:29 am

      I liked how Mav played this game. The big difference was that he was getting clean looks at the basket. Last season he had to force up a lot of contested shots and I think that led to some inconsistent shooting nights.

    • Wolfer96

      December 23, 2016 at 3:31 am

      I feel like even when Yurt7 isn’t filling up the stat sheets his presence on the court helps spacing and gets guys better shots. He also got his hands on a lot of rebounds and tipped it to another teammate. That ball entering the paint and not immediately becoming a turnover has been a huge difference since Yurt7 became eligible.

  2. Wolfer96

    December 23, 2016 at 1:53 am

    Honestly the bench could have won this game. ACC can’t start fast enough.

  3. Wolfer96

    December 22, 2016 at 6:04 pm

    The key for me is Yurt7 staying out of foul trouble and staying in the game. Like the last game if the Pack can swing the ball side to side and down into Yurt7 it will expose the holes in the defense as it collapses. What I don’t want to see is too much dribbling and lack of ball movement. The Yurt will create opportunities for others and everyone just needs to seize their opportunities.

    • Anthony

      December 22, 2016 at 6:57 pm

      Yea i hate seeing less than 15 team assists int he Box score and it should be around 20 a game with the personnel that we have.

      • wolfpack74

        December 28, 2016 at 11:49 pm

        Anthony don’t be a troll now.

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