Now for a look at the defense, right before the schedule gets a lot more difficult. The numbers are from conference games only, and the ranks in parentheses are conference ranks, not national ranks. (Alas.)
State's defense has done a solid job this season, though of course the schedule to this point has something to do with that. Only twice has the Pack allowed an opponent to score more than 1.1 points per possession a game--Georgia Tech and Wake Forest, both in the RBC Center, oddly enough. No other opponent has eclipsed 1.04 PPP, not even the Heels. Efficiency is down in general this season--the conference average is around an even 1 point per possession--so that's something to keep in mind. Back in the day when I first started tracking these figures, back when the ACC was much deeper, the average was usually around 1.04 or 1.05.
|2012||97.2 (4)||49.1 (10)
||30.2 (6)||29.7 (3)
State's improvement doesn't have much to do with FG% defense; it's the big gains in forcing turnovers and securing defensive boards that have really paid dividends. Effort helps a lot. Also, opponents have hit 67.8% of their free throws against State in 2012, compared to 75% last season, so our FT defense has gotten way better.