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NC State opens the basketball season vs. Austin Peay | Gameday Preview and How to Watch

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NC State Wolfpack vs. Austin Peay Governors
Time: 8:00 PM
Location: Raleigh, NC
TV: ACCNX /ESPN3

Basketball season if finally here.

NC State opens the season against Austin Peay of the ASUN conference tonight at 8pm. The Governors are coming off of a 12-18 season and they are in their first season in their new conference. They are picked to finish 9th this season.

Austin Peay has a familiar face as their head coach. Nate James, the former Duke sharpshooter, and more recently, assistant coach is in his first season with the Governors. He will rely on their returning star, sophomore 6’11 Elijah Hutchins-Everett.

Hutchins-Everett burst onto the scene as a freshman, averaging 12 points and 7 boards per game and shooting over 50% from the floor. He was a 3 star center coming out of high school and had offers from Miami and Penn State amongst others.

Hutchins-Everett isn’t the only guy who can impact the game on their current roster. They also have Caleb Stone-Carawell who averaged 11.4 pts per game last season. And it’s not like this is a team without experience. They are returning 8 players from last years team, so don’t expect them to lack chemisty or be too sloppy in their first outing.

Keys to the game for NC State

NC State certainly is going to have a big advantage when it comes to size, strength and athleticism. However, there are things we’ll be watching closely in this one.

NC State played almost all man-to-man defense in their exhibition. Will that hold true in the regular season opener? Keatts has hinted at wanting to throw in some zone, and while it might not matter against a team like Austin Peay, we want to see if he throws some zone looks in their to ready his team for the more competative games right around the corner.

We also want to see how the rotation looks. Obviously, Keatts will want to work in as many guys as he can early in the season, and like most years with this many new players, it will be interesting to see how he pairs together different combinations.

We were really impressed with Ernest Ross in the exhibition. There were questions about his health this offseason, but it looks like he’s back to being 100%. With that said, Ross wants to show Keatts that he can handle the 4 spot and be a major contibutor to the front court. If this happens, it gives the Pack a dimension we didn’t see last season. They’d be able to play two bigs, with Ross being the more versatile guy and someone who can also protect the rim and block some shots.

Who emerges amongst the bigs? Is is Mahorcic or Burns who gets more time on the floor? Or does Dowuona show up and take a big step forward this year? We’re not sure, but we’ll be watching. Our guess is that Mahorcic is the enforcer in the middle, Burns is in there when they need buckets and Dowuona gives minutes when State needs height (which might be the case against the 6’11 Hutchins Everett).

Jarkell Joiner is also a guy to watch. NC State fans will get their first glimpse of the 5th year senior who coaches have been raving about this offseason. He was an elite scorer in high school and has really matured into a great point guard during his time at Ole Miss. He won’t need to carry the scoring load as he did last season for Ole Miss, and will be able to play more of a distributor. So it will be interesting to see how this team looks with a PG who can get the ball to the right guys at the right time (we didn’t see that at all last season).

This game starts at 8pm and will be streaming online at ESPN3/ACCNX.

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Papajohn
Papajohn
1 year ago

Sounds like A P is a total mystery, even more so than we are. A new coach, four transfers they’ll rely on, and some freshmen.
We should out talent them. Hope we take the opportunity to get better.
If KK is going to play zone at all, I hope he unveils it for the Kansas game.

Dof87
Dof87
1 year ago

Nice summary. Too bad its on ACCNX, they usually black out the ESPN3 games locally.

NC State Basketball

NC State Men’s Basketball is Tied for the 20th Most NCAAT Wins Since 2020

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According to College Basketball Report, NC State’s Men’s Basketball team is tied for the 20th most NCAA Tournament wins since 2020.

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Yes, I’m fully aware that all 4 of those wins took place in this years NCAA Tournament, but I don’t care. STATS ARE STATS!

ACC Teams with the Most NCAAT Wins Since 2020

1. Duke – 8
2. UNC – 7
2. Miami – 7
4. NC State – 4
5. Clemson – 3

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NC State Basketball

NC State’s Men’s Basketball Team Produced 2 of the MOST Watched Games of 2023-24, College or Pro

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The Basketball season is officially over, collegiately and professionally. Looking back at the data of viewers for Men’s & Women’s Basketball, as well as the NBA, the NC State Men’s Basketball team played in two of the Top-10 most watched games of the 2023-24 basketball season.

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NC State vs. Duke in the Elite 8 was the 2nd most watched basketball game of the year with 15.1 million viewers, trailing only Iowa vs. South Carolina in the Women’s College National Championship game. The Wolfpack’s game vs. the Boilermakers in the Final 4 ranked 9th, with 11.5 million viewers.

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NC State Basketball

DJ Burns talks keys to recent weight loss during Pre-Draft Workout with Pacers

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Pack fans have been wondering how after 2 years in Raleigh, DJ Burns finally figured out how to drop weight, and keep it off. He spoke to reporters during his pre-draft workout with the Pacers.

“Playing at the pace we played today. Doing the work we did today. I probably would have left out with a full body cramp a couple months ago.”

“Keep on improving my pace. Adjusting to the level and speed I’m going to have to play at, at all times.”

“Lots of running. Lots of figuring out which foods I can no longer have, which were almost all of them that I liked. So, just finding new ones that I do like that go along with the plan.”

“This is the third (workout), and I actually travel to Milwaukee tomorrow to workout with the Bucks. And then some more stuff being confirmed that I won’t speak on just yet.”

Burns has worked out for the Lakers, Pacers and Hornets up to this point.

Plus more…

Listen to the full interview above.

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NC State Basketball

DJ Horne reads his new children’s book “Why Not Me? Why Not Us?” to Wake County Students

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DJ Horne was a huge reason NC State overcame the odds to win the ACC Tournament this past season. Now he’s trying to pass on the ‘Why not us!?” psyche to elementary school kids.

Horne was at Jones Dairy Elementary to read his new children’s book “Why not me? Why not us?” to students yesterday.

This is a pretty cool moment for Horne, who attended elementary school in Wake County (Reedy Creek Elementary School). He now gets to go back and tell his story, in hopes of inspiring the next generation.

The book is based loosely on his life growing up, and the adversity he overcame to become a champion.

Pick up the book today at Amazon.

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