NC State Wolfpack vs. Boston College Eagles
TV: ACC Network / WatchESPN
Location: Raleigh, NC
Line; NC State by 9.5
NC State (5-1) is coming off their biggest win of the season, a 3 point win over rival UNC. Now they set their sights on Boston College who sits at 2-5 in the ACC.
Keys to the game
– NC State has been good, but I’m not sure people realize just how good they’ve been. They are shooting 48.8% from the floor, 39% from beyond the arc, they are averaging over 33 rebounds and turning their opponents over 12 times per game (they turned UNC over 18 times.) This is a very good team and they’ve played about half their season without arguably their best player (DJ Funderburk), who likely will be back tonight. For NC State, one key will be to sustain their effort, continue to play team basketball, and re-integrate Funderburk into the mix.
– NC State needs to slow down the Boston College guards. The Eagles are led by junior Wynston Tabbs (15 ppg) and sophomore Jay Heath (12 ppg). Tabbs can shoot it from outside, but Heath does most of his damage slashing to the hoop. Both of their guards are on the bigger side, 6’2 and 6’3 respectively, however when faced with big shot blockers in the middle, they haven’t fared well. Just take a look at their 38 point loss to Syracuse. Tabbs had 11 and Heath was miserable, shooting 2-12 and finishing with 5 points. With Manny Bates in the middle, BC will have to play away from their strengths to win.
– NC State SHOULD be at full strength. They beat UNC without Funderburk and really without freshman PG Cam Hayes, who played minimal minutes after returning from the injured list. After a week off, State should be fully healthy, and that means they should be that much more dangerous.