NC State beat USC Upstate 98-71 to improve to 11-1 on the year, but the leaders of the Pack weren’t who you would expect.
Coach Keatts subbed in his 2nd team of five at the 16 minute mark in the 1st half. He brought his starters back in with 11:22 left in the 1st.
Their time on the court would be short lived. They were sloppy on defense, allowing USC Upstate to go on a 6-0 run in a 1:25 span.
As a result, the “starters” were pulled, and the “2nd team” was thrown back into the game.
NC State led by 18 points (50-32) at the half, but that couldn’t wipe the scowl off of Kevin Keatts’ face.
Sending a message, and rewarding effort, Devon Daniels, Eric Lockett, DJ Funderburk, Blake Harris, and Jericole Hellems started the second half.
Plain and simple…NC State was better against USC Upstate when starters Torin Dorn, Markell Johnson, and CJ Bryce weren’t in the game.
Look at the +/- column on the far right for proof. The top 5 players started the game, and the bottom 5 came off the bench.
The “bench” scored 62 points today, which was the highest output of the season, and the most since the 1999-2000 season.
Graduate Senior Eric Lockett, who didn’t play a second in the Auburn game, led the Wolfpack in scoring and rebounds with 15 points and 8 rebounds (tied with Devon Daniels).
Redshirt Sophomore Devon Daniels didn’t shoot the ball efficiently (4-11 FG), but he finished with 13 points and 8 rebounds, and boasted the best +/- of the game (+39).
Redshirt Sophomore DJ Funderburk (4-7 FG) and Freshman Jericole Hellems (6-14 FG & 6 rebounds) both had 13 points as well.
Redshirt Sophomore Blake Harris led the Wolfpack with 8 assists, and also added in 8 points of his own (3-4 FG).
If Harris had scored two more points, the NC State bench would have all been in double-figures.
What the “2nd team” put on film wasn’t always artwork, but it was pure effort and hustle. NC State turned the ball over 15 times, but forced USC Upstate to turn it over 21 times.
The Wolfpack was unselfish today, recording 23 assists on 36 field goals.
Honestly, all 10 players on the roster could start on any given night, and they would deserve it.
NC State beat a team by 27 points this afternoon, and CJ Bryce, Markell Johnson and Braxton Beverly combined for 13 points.
Chalk that up as a big win for the Wolfpack.
NC State’s next game will be at home against Loyola University Maryland on December 28th at 7pm.
NC State Makes Top-10 for Graduate Transfer Guard Justin Kier
George Mason Graduate Transfer Guard Justin Kier (6’4″/197) included NC State in his list of Final 10 schools.
— Andrew Slater (@Andrew__Slater) April 13, 2020
Kier was granted a fifth year of eligibility after missing all but 9 games last season due to injury. He was expected to arguably be George Mason’s best returning player next year, averaging 14.5 points and 6.5 rebounds, earning All-Atlantic 10 2nd Team honors.
NC State Reaches Out to UAB Transfer Makhtar Guyer
According to Rivals’ Corey Evans, NC State has reached out to UAB Transfer Forward Makhtar Guyer (6’10″/210), after he announced he was transferring on Friday.
Virginia Tech has offered UAB transfer Makhtar Guyer, he tells @RivalsPortal.
Georgetown, Miami, Mississippi State, NC State and San Diego State have reached out since his transfer yesterday. @Hokie_Haven
— Corey Evans (@coreyevans_10) April 11, 2020
— Makhtar Gueye (@Thelionkilla) April 11, 2020
Guyer has one year of eligibility remaining. Last year as a Junior at UAB, Guyer averaged 6.8 points and 5.1 rebounds, starting in 27 of 31 games.
NC State Accepts Recommendation to Move Case to IARP
NC State has accepted the recommendation to move their violation’s case from the NCAA’s Committee on Infractions to the Independent Accountability Resolution Process.
“We’ve stated throughout this process that NC State will accept accountability for any shortcomings and defend ourselves aggressively where we feel it is appropriate and necessary to do so,” Woodson wrote in a statement released by the school on Wednesday. “As our response to the Referral Petition demonstrates, we do not think NC State can receive an objective or fair hearing before the Committee on Infractions in this matter. We believe the only remaining option is that our case be moved to the Independent Accountability Resolution Process.
“NC State has a long history of working cooperatively with the NCAA, and we remain committed to working collaboratively through the IARP to address concerns and to resolve this matter as fairly and efficiently as possible.” (WRAL)
The IARP is made up of decision makers that are investigators and legal advocates that are independent of any NCAA teams.
The difference between the traditional process, and the IARP, is that the latter’s decision is final, unable to be appealed.
Vote For NC State Men’s Basketball Fans in Fox College Hoops 64-Team Bracket
In the absence of the NCAA Tournament, Fox College Hoops has created a 64-team bracket to determine the best fanbase of Men’s Basketball teams.
They determined 60 of the contestants based of the Men’s Basketball teams with the most Twitter followers. The final four were determined by the highest rated teams not yet selected according to the NET Rankings.
You: So how does this #FOXFanVote thing work?
— FOX College Hoops (@CBBonFOX) April 5, 2020
The winner of each matchup is determined by fan vote, obviously.
NC State’s Men’s Basketball fans were given a #8 seed in the East Bracket.
The winner of the bracket, will earn quite a gift. Fox College Hoops will place a billboard of that team in close proximity to their rival.
Go ahead and vote for NC State to beat Alabama in the 1st round right now.