NC State Wolfpack vs. William & Mary Tribe
Time: 7:00 PM
Location: Raleigh, NC
TV: ACCNX (& ESPN+)
NC State is coming off an eye-opening 3 games in the Bahamas.
The Pack went 2-1 with wins over Dayton and Butler, and a down-to-the-wire 6 points loss to #3 Kansas. The tournament gave NC State fans a taste of what is to come, with elite guard play, versatility on the wing and an option to slow it down and beat you with some back to the basket post play.
This team has proven that they can beat you in multiple ways and have the pieces to be very competitive in the ACC this season, but they’ll have to weather some trap games. This William & Mary game being one of them.
The Tribe is 3-4 on the season, with blowout losses to Pitt and VT (their only two quality opponents), but they can’t be overlooked. State will be riding high off their big wins in the Bahamas and they could be looking forward to their ACC opener against Pitt this Friday. Focusing in and taking care of W&M is going to be a task.
William & Mary’s leading scorer is Ben Wight a 6’9, 220lb junior. He’s your basic mid-major big. He’s got solid fundamentals in the post, uses a lot of pump fakes, but that’s it. He’s not super mobile, or athletic, and can’t stretch you out to the 3-point line. He is averaging 13 points per game, but should really struggle against the NC State bigs who are stronger and more physical.
Their guards are decent at 6’6, 6’3 and 6’1, but none should really worry the Wolfpack. They can shoot it from outside, hitting 40% of their 3s on the season, but without much of a postgame and without guard mismatch that would allow them to get into the lane, State can stay home on shooters and defenders go one on one without much fear.
Things we are watching for…
- Breon Pass started to come on a little bit at the end of the Battle 4 Atlantis, slowing his game down and not forcing the issue. We’re hoping to see more of that before ACC play starts, and this might be a good chance to get him some big-time minutes.
- The same goes for LJ Thomas who has been solid but has yet to really showcase all he can do. He’s trying to just play his role right now and earn minutes, but he’s capable of becoming a pretty good scorer.
- Get Terquavion Smith back on track. He had a decent tournament, but too often he was settling for quick shots and making unnecessary turnovers. I think a lot of that comes from the fact that State was on a big stage and his shot just wasn’t falling. We’re hoping to see Smith get back in rhythm in this one.
- Speaking of rhythm, DJ Burns is starting to get comfortable and that spells big trouble for opponents. You saw against Butler that NC State can run their entire offense through Burns when the guards need a rest (or aren’t hitting) and he can carry you. We want to see him continue this because having an elite scoring post presence is vital if you want to be an ACC contender.
- High energy! State played with great energy in every game this season, but tonight is a trap game with Pitt on the horizon. If they come out with the same energy they’ve had, they will be fine. But let these wins go to you head and you risk getting sniped but a team that shouldn’t even come close to taking you out.
NC State’s Men’s Basketball Team is Having One of it’s Best Runs in the ACC Ever
Heading into tonight’s Top-25 matchup between #22 NC State and #8 UVA, the Wolfpack are in the midst of one of their best runs in ACC play since the conference was formed in 1953.
The Wolfpack are 9-4 in the ACC, but they have won 8 of their last 9 conference games.
The last time NC State went on a run like this in ACC Regular Season games was during the 1972-73 and 73-74 seasons, when the Wolfpack went 12-0 in ACC play.
12-0 (1972 & 73-74)
12 of 13 (1958-59)
8 of 9 (2022-23, 1961-61, 1954-55)
7 of 8 (1974-75, 1969-70, 1964-65, 1955-56)
6 of 7 (2005-06, 1979-80, 1960-61, 1957-58)
#22 NC State is a 7.5-Point Underdog at #8 UVA Tonight
#22 NC State is a 7.5-point underdog at #8 Virginia tonight at 9pm, and the Total is sitting at 137.
- NC State is 19-5 Straight Up.
- They are 11-11-2 Against the Spread.
- UVA is 17-4 Straight Up.
- They are 8-12-1 Against the Spread.
- The Total has gone Over in 13 of NC State’s 24 games.
- The Total has gone Over in 12 of UVA’s 22 games
- UVA is 15-2 as the Favorite.
- NC State is 4-4 as the Underdog.
- NC State is 4-1-1 in their last 6 games against UVA Against the Spread.
- The Total has gone Over in 5 of NC State’s last 7 games.
- The Total has gone Over in 4 of UVA’s last 5 games.
- The Total has gone Under in 5 of the last 6 games between these two in Charlottesville.
- NC State has won two in a row, and 3 of the last 4 against UVA.
- Kevin Keatts is 3-4 against UVA. He is 2-2 at UVA.
NC State vs. UVA
NC State is the ONLY Team in the Triangle Ranked for the 1st Time in 40 Years
NC State’s Men’s Basketball team is back in the AP Top 25 for the first time in 4 years, landing at #22 in the Week 14 AP Poll.
NC State is ranked. Duke and UNC are not. Last time that was the case? December 27th, 1982. Over 40 years ago. It’s only the 6th time in 67 years that this has happened.
Wolfpack was 17th that week. UNC was unranked in two polls all year, Dec. 20 and Dec. 27. Duke was not ranked that season (Dawkins, Alarie, Bilis, Henderson were freshmen).
Other *cough* ACC teams on Dec. 27: Virginia (4), Louisville (13), Syracuse (14).
— Luke DeCock (@LukeDeCock) February 6, 2023
Before that: The preseason poll in 1973, the final poll in 1970 and Dec. 5, 1955. So this is the sixth time in 67 years.
Happened pretty often between 1952-55. NC State was ranked during the entire 1950-51 season while neither Duke nor UNC was.
— Luke DeCock (@LukeDeCock) February 6, 2023
Anyone remember what happened that 1982-83 basketball season?
NC State won the National Championship.
NC State Breaks Into the AP Poll, Landing at #22
NC State is off to it’s best start in almost 2 decades, and they now finally have a number beside their name, landing at #22 in the Week 14 AP Poll.
— NC State Men's Bball (@PackMensBball) February 6, 2023
This is the first time that NC State has been ranked in the AP Poll since January 28th, 2019, when they were ranked 23rd.
ACC Teams in the Week 14 AP Poll
22. NC State