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Gameday: NC State vs Miami Keys to the Game

NC State Basketball

Gameday: NC State vs Miami Keys to the Game

NC State @ Miami 
4:30pm | Miami, Fl | TV: RSN
NC State travels down to the sunshine state to take on the Miami Hurricanes to kick off the ACC season. Mark Gottfried will need his group of young players to up their play to escape Miami with a victory. Game time is at 4:30 and can be seen on RSN. What are the keys to the game for the Wolfpack?

NC State must be patient offensively in order to solve Miami’s sound defense…

The Hurricanes sport one of the stoutest defenses in the country as they are ranked 8th nationally, giving up 58.6 PPG. NC State will have to display discipline when attacking the basket. Miami has plenty of size in both the backcourt and frontcourt which allows them to alter teams shots. NC State will need to seek out contact when attacking the paint and not worry about getting blocked. Malik Abu and Omer Yurtseven should be able to outplay Miami’s frontcourt if they are patient instead of rushing shots. Wolfpack guards will need to be strong and challenge Miami defenders off the dribble with penetration. If Dennis Smith and company can get into the paint Miami will be in full scramble mode, which will lead to easy buckets. NC State cannot settle for contested jump shots.

Turn Ja’Quan Newton into a passer…

Newton can score in a variety of ways, including off the dribble, pull-up jumpers, and floaters. Three-point shooting has not been a strength for Newton. Thus far Newton is only shooting 33% from the arc; however, he has only attempted 18 on the season. NC State must take advantage of this knowledge! Dennis Smith and Terry Henderson must stay on their feet and not bite on shot fakes from the perimeter when matched up with Newton. Ja’Quan wants to attack the paint where he is most effective. Newton has struggled with turnovers he has registered 39 in 12 games. It will take a team defensive effort to force Newton into passing versus scoring. NC State has to like their chances if they limit Newton’s shot attempts forcing the ball out of his hands.

NC State needs to keep playing unselfishly and for each other…

The Pack is averaging 22 APG over the last four games. Dennis Smith has spearheaded the attack for NC State leading the charge in assists. The Hurricanes have one of the best defenses in the country but even the best defenses break down after a couple of rotations. NC State needs to keep playing with movement and not revert to hero ball this Saturday. Keeping the ball moving will go a long way towards winning this Saturday.

Timing will be critical for NC State…

Mark Gottfried’s team cannot afford to be lackadaisical in running their offense. Dennis Smith needs to take control by getting into their sets quickly. Miami’s defense is too good to allow them the extra defender known as the shot clock. It will be imperative that the Pack cuts hard off the ball to get open to initiate the offense near the three-point line. Malik Abu must work with his feet and not his hands to avoid senselessly offensive fouls. NC State will win if they run their sets efficiently and in the optimal range (not so far away from the three-point line).

Saturday will be exciting for NC State as they kick off their ACC season on New Year’s Eve. It will also be refreshing to play a talented team with a shot to make the NCAA Tournament. The Wolfpack has a chance to end 2016 with a road ACC win!



  1. wolfpack74

    January 1, 2017 at 4:08 pm

    Too many new guys trying to form a team using a Coach that can’t coach during the game. No defense, no rebounding, not tough. Take that seven footer to Harlem and get his a$$ beat several times and make him tough. Playing like a p___y at seven foot is ridiculous. During the part of the game I watch, Smith acts like he is God’s gift to NCSU basketball. Set the rotation, and stick with it.


    January 1, 2017 at 6:31 am

    Once again Mav should be 7-8th off the bench.

  3. Wolfer96

    December 31, 2016 at 11:38 pm

    This is why I’ve been saying “wait until the Miami game”. There was no way to get a good measure of this Wolfpack squad against inferior teams. Miami showed that this team needs a lot of improvement. People blamed not having this guy or that guy early in the season and I saw poor perimeter and transition D, poor shot selection, bad habits, and lack of toughness. Lots of work to do.

  4. Wolfer96

    December 31, 2016 at 11:34 pm

    About what I expected. Out-coached, out-hustled, out-played. Turnovers and rebounding alone made it tough to stay in this game. This team developed bad habits while playing bad teams and it bit them on the ass against a well coached team. Coach Larranaga is probably one of the most underrated coaches in the country.


    December 31, 2016 at 11:24 pm

    Coaching is not just about plays you have to get your guys. Kapita should have been in the game a long time go not when its 4 minutes and we are down by double digits. Smith, Doren, Mav (shouldve been Henderson), Y7, and kapita was when we did the best. I must say Abu played pretty good.

    • Wolfer96

      January 1, 2017 at 12:46 am

      Yeah surprisingly Abu has shown up the last few games. It’s like a lightbulb went off in his head and he realized that he was 6’8″ and had a 40″+ vertical. He’s been going at the rim and not settling for a bunch of jumpers.

      Kapita’s toughness was definitely missed.


      January 1, 2017 at 6:29 am

      Coaching is not just about plays you have to get your guys energized and ready to play from the tip. Miami made us look soft. That is what the first line was suppose to say. Blame it on the early start to the new year. lol #getemrightgott


    December 31, 2016 at 11:21 pm

    Mav Rowan doesn’t need to come in so early 1 or 2 3s doesn’t make up for the lack of defense and turnovers.

    • Wolfer96

      January 1, 2017 at 12:49 am

      And some of those cringe worthy shots off the dribble. I’d prefer he take it all the way to the hoop and at least try to get a foul.


    December 31, 2016 at 11:16 pm

    Gott Gott to go!! he doesn’t know how to use what he Gott (has), coach defense or make players better. Point blank. he has had good players to get to where he is but that get exposed. Just like I said in the beginning of the season we dont come out with energy and team jump on us and have control. #Gott-Gott-todobetter-buthecant. Do you see the word play on Gott?

    • wolfpack74

      December 31, 2016 at 11:40 pm

      I agree. But then I have been called a Troll for not drinking the Kool-Aid. Fire Gottfried.

  8. wolfpack74

    December 31, 2016 at 10:28 pm

    NIT here we come.

  9. Wolfer96

    December 31, 2016 at 7:12 pm

    Blue bloods both go down today. Wolfpack better come ready or it will be an ugly game. Miami is not Ryder or Fairfield. Hope these kids are ready for a battle.

    • wolfpack74

      December 31, 2016 at 11:17 pm

      Ugly is my conclusion. Not ready for prime time. Loss by blue bloods just makes it tougher for Pack.

      • Wolfer96

        January 1, 2017 at 12:48 am

        We blew a big opportunity to get a head start on our neighbors.

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