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NC State Basketball

NC State Suffers 2nd Straight Historic Loss, Falling to UNC 113-96

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Make that two historic losses in a row.

After the worst shooting performance in ACC history against Virginia Tech, NC State clapped back with an outpouring of 96 points against the Tar Heels in the Dean Dome last night. That’s the most points scored against UNC this year. The Wolfpack shot 50% from the field, 41.2% from beyond the arch (compared to UNC’s 38.1%) and only turned the ball over 11 times, compared to UNC’s 17.

NC State scored 72 more points last night than they did on Saturday against Virginia Tech. That might be a record, but that’s not the history I’m talking about.

On Saturday against Virginia Tech, the Wolfpack’s offense was historically bad. Last night, NC State’s defense was historically bad.

UNC scored 113 points.

  • The most points the Tar Heels have ever scored against the Wolfpack.
  • The 2nd most points ever scored against NC State.
  • The most points UNC has scored in regulation since 1968 (115 – Clemson).

NC State allowed UNC to shoot 56% from the field. A 6% differential doesn’t equal a 17 point loss (Let’s be real…it was worse than that. The Tar Heels were up by 28 at one point).

For one…the Wolfpack continued their foul happy ways, and allowed UNC to make 31 free throws (out of 37), compared to 15 made free throws of their own.

Two…Luke Maye might as well be a greek god when he plays against NC State, finishing with 31 points and 12 rebounds, becoming the only player in UNC history to score 30+ points against NC State three times in their career (MORE HISTORY).

Three…the Wolfpack’s transition defense was non-existent. UNC had 20 fast break points compared to NC State’s 6.

Four…UNC has playmakers, but they shared the ball beautifully, finishing the night with 26 assists.

In my opinion, the only two players in Red that looked liked they belonged on the court were Braxton Beverly and CJ Bryce. Beverly finished with a team-high 17 points (5-7 FG/4-5 3PT), and Bryce finished with 15 points (6-12 FG).

I know Kevin Keatts’ team plays harder than past NC State teams, but UNC played harder last night. They ran faster. They were on the ground for loose balls. They were more aggressive.

Here’s the truth: NC State was overrated coming out of Non-Conference play. Also, they have shown some grit in ACC play, but have been behind by double digits in the 2nd half in 7 of their 10 ACC games.

Here’s another truth: They showed against UNC and UVA at home that they are still capable of much better than they put on the court last night.

 

NC State Basketball

NC State Moved up to #31 in the NET Rankings After Syracuse

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NC State moved up 6 spots, from #37 to #31, in the NET Rankings after beating Syracuse 73-58 on Wednesday night. 

The NET Rankings have replaced the RPI as the primary shaper of the NCAA Tournament field.

The NCAA Evaluation Tool, which will be known as the NET, relies on game results, strength of schedule, game location, scoring margin, net offensive and defensive efficiency, and the quality of wins and losses. To make sense of team performance data, late-season games (including from the NCAA tournament) were used as test sets to develop a ranking model leveraging machine learning techniques. The model, which used team performance data to predict the outcome of games in test sets, was optimized until it was as accurate as possible. The resulting model is the one that will be used as the NET going forward.

The NET was built to create a ranking system that was as accurate as possible while also evaluating team performance fairly. To ensure fairness, certain types of data were omitted from the model. Of key importance, game date and order were omitted to give equal importance to both early and late-season games. In addition, a cap of 10 points was applied to the winning margin to prevent rankings from encouraging unsportsmanlike play, such as needlessly running up the score in a game where the outcome was certain. (NCAA)

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NC State Basketball

NC State’s Men’s Basketball ACC Slate for the Next 3 Years

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The ACC released the conference schedules for Men’s Basketball for the next three years today.

Why is that noteworthy?

Well, beginning next year, the ACC slate will increase from 18 games to 20 games.

Here’s a look at what conference play will look like for the Wolfpack the next three seasons.

It’s worth noting that NC State will play the team that wears dark blue over in Durham twice tomorrow.

The 20-game ACC slate is locked in for three years.

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NC State Basketball

Sacha Killeya-Jones is No Longer on NC State’s Basketball Team

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Former Kentucky player and 5-Star prospect in High School, Sacha Killeya-Jones, is no longer a member of the NC State Men’s Basketball team.

Under transfer rules, Killeya-Jones is sitting out this season as a redshirt, and would have had two years of eligibility left in Raleigh.

Wolfpack head coach Kevin Keatts addressed Killeya-Jones’ absence from the bench last night after the game.

(Sacha) Killeya-Jones is currently not a member of our program and that’s all I can say right now. (Link)

Exactly why he is no longer a member of the program is unclear at this point.

Killeya-Jones is originally a native of Chapel Hill, but played his high school ball at Virginia Episcopal School in Lynchburg, Virginia. After originally committing to UVA, Jones eventually committed to go to Kentucky. Jones was a consensus 5-Star recruit, and ranked as the #23 overall player in the class of 2016.

Standing 6’11”, Killeya-Jones was a big component of the future of NC State’s frontcourt. This year, the Wolfpack have no depth in this area, with Wyatt Walker (GR JR) and DJ Funderburk (RS SO) serving as the only “big men.” Next year was going to be a luxury, with both Walker and Funderburk returning, and the addition of Killeya-Jones and Manny Bates (FR), who had shoulder surgery this season.

NC State still has 2 scholarships available in 2019. The Wolfpack coaching staff is in hot pursuit of Christian Brown, and has space to add a big man alongside of him.

 

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NC State Basketball

NC State’s Eric Lockett Charged With Assault, Suspended Indefinetly

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UPDATE

Graduate Senior Eric Lockett wasn’t with his NC State teammates last night in their 73-58 victory over Syracuse because he was charged with assaulting his girlfriend on Tuesday night.

He was arrested this morning.

Before last night’s game, NC State released that Lockett wasn’t with the team due to a “personal matter.”

After the game when asked, Wolfpack head coach Kevin Keatts didn’t have any further comment.

“I won’t comment on (Eric) Lockett or (Blake) Harris further than what we’ve released.” (Link)

Lockett came to NC State this offseason as a Graduate Transfer from Florida International. He has played in 22 games (starting 2) for the Wolfpack this year, averaging 5.0 points and 3.3 rebounds in 16.9 minutes per game.

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