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NC State Basketball

NC State Freshman Big Man Manny Bates To Redshirt the 2018-19 Season

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Today was a day of good news, and bad news for the NC State Men’s Basketball program.

The good news: Sophomore point guard Blake Harris was granted immediately eligibility, after transferring from Missouri after 14 games played.

The bad news: Freshman big man Manny Bates (6’11″/221) will have to redshirt the 2018-19 season after undergoing surgery on his left shoulder earlier this month (dislocated his shoulder).

“Obviously this is not how any of us wanted Manny’s college career to begin,” Keatts said. “But Manny has a positive outlook on the situation and I know he will work hard to rehabilitate his shoulder.” (GoPack)
Bates actually dislocated his shoulder at the beginning of his Senior season at Northwood Temple Academy as well, and missed much of the season after undergoing surgery.
Obviously it’s not a good sign that Bates has now had two dislocated shoulders, accompanied by two surgeries in a two-year span, but he will get the best treatment possible here in Raleigh.
The Wolfpack’s front court was already a question mark, and after the disappointing news today, that question mark is in bold.
Last season the front court had a star in Omer Yurtseven, and experience in Lennard Freeman and Abdul Malik-Abu. Yurtseven transferred to Georgetown, and Freeman and Abu graduated.

This years front court was already going to be young and inexperienced, but now they are one man down. They are left with Graduate Transfer Wyatt Walker (from Samford), RS SO DJ Funderburk and Freshman Ian Steere.

In fairness to Keatts’ system, it will often run with only one big man, depending on matchups, but the loss is still significant.

NC State Basketball

N&O: NC State Extends Kevin Keatts’ Contract 2 Years

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According to Joe Giglio of the News & Observer, NC State has added two additional years to Kevin Keatts’ contract. The Men’s Basketball head coach has led the Wolfpack to a 45-24 record over the past two seasons, becoming only the 11th coach in ACC history to lead their team to two consecutive 20+ win seasons in their first two years.

According to Giglio, the financials of the contract will be the same, paying him $2.7 million annually.

Keatts’ contract now extends through the 2025-26 season.

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NC State Basketball

NC State’s 2019-20 Men’s Basketball Schedule is HERE

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NC State’s 2019-20 Men’s Basketball schedule is officially HERE.

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NC State Basketball

CBS Picks NC State as 1 of 5 that Could Make a Run in March who Missed Dance in 2019

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Matt Ward of CBSSports picked 5 schools that missed the NCAA Tournament in 2019, that could even make a run at the Final Four in 2020. In the past 9 years, 5 teams have made the Final Four who missed the Big Dance the year prior.

NC State was 1 of the 5 teams picked that could make a run.

NC State Wolfpack

After posting a 24-12 record last season, including a 9-9 record in the ACC and an ACC Tournament win over Clemson, the Wolfpack were on the outside looking in at the NCAA Tournament and will look to return this season. The selection committee didn’t exactly look highly on the Wolfpack’s’ record last season and they had to settle for an NIT bid, ultimately bowing out to Lipscomb. They finished 36th in the final NET rankings, and while 11 at-large bids went to teams ranked below them in the NET, there was just one team ranked above them also left out: NIT champion Texas.

The issue? NC State’s nonconference schedule was ranked dead last in all of Division I — that’s 353rd. The ACC offers a myriad of opportunities, but they didn’t take advantage against the likes of Duke, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida State. The Wolfpack will need to get at least one of those games this season and their nonconference schedule will also be more challenging. Beyond traveling to Auburnand hosting Wisconsin, whom they played last season, they will travel to Greensboro to play UNC Greensboro and will play Memphis at Barclays Center.

Kevin Keatts brings back a wealth of talent, specifically in the backcourt, led by Markell Johnson. The senior point guard is one of the best in the country. C.J. Bryce, Braxton Beverly, and Devon Daniels are also key returners. Their biggest area of improvement will be in the frontcourt. Keatts struggled to find consistency there last season, but the additions of graduate transfers in 6-10 Danny Dixon (UMKC) and 6-8 forward Pat Andree (Lehigh) should reap rapid rewards. Both big men, especially Andree, can stretch out and make shots from 3-point range. Add redshirt freshman Immanuel Bates to the mix, and the Wolfpack frontcourt is much improved.

The Wolfpack are a serious candidate here to go from out to Atlanta. They have experience to couple with young talent led by incoming freshman Dereon Seabron and redshirt sophomore Atticus Taylor. Keatts’ pressing defense can cause difficulties for teams without much time to prepare. The difference maker is Johnson. He is an elite point guard who will have plenty of opportunities to lead the Pack to big wins this season. (CBS)

Ironically, one of the other 5 teams was Memphis, who NC State will be playing in non-conference play in the Barclays Center Classic.

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NC State Women’s Basketball Ranks 15th in ESPN’s Way-Too-Early Preseason Top-25

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Yesterday ESPN released their Way-Too-Early College Basketball Women’s Preseason Top-25, and NC State impressively sat at #15.

15. NC State Wolfpack
Previous: 25

The Wolfpack overcame myriad major injuries to have one of the most successful seasons in program history. If health can be restored, NC State should again be in the mix near the top of the ACC. Point guard Kaila Ealey missed all of last season after a knee injury in October 2018. If she can return to form, senior Aislinn Konig can return to playing off the ball, where her 3-point shooting will be more of a threat. Getting guard Grace Hunter, who was the team’s leading scorer before a season-ending knee injury in January, back to 100 percent will give coach Wes Moore a versatile backcourt to put around budding star Elissa Cunane in the middle. The 6-foot-5 sophomore could be one of the best post players in the country. (ESPN)

ESPN’s Way-Too-Early Preseason Top-25

  1. Oregon
  2. Baylor
  3. UCONN
  4. Stanford
  5. Maryland
  6. Oregon State
  7. South Carolina
  8. Arizona
  9. Mississippi State
  10. Texas A&M
  11. Florida State
  12. UCLA
  13. Kentucky
  14. Texas
  15. NC State
  16. Minnesota
  17. Arizona State
  18. DePaul
  19. Arkansas
  20. Notre Dame
  21. Indiana
  22. Miami
  23. Michigan
  24. Rice
  25. Michigan State

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