NC State once again fails to validate the existence of basketball

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport

Wake Forest beat NC State on a late layup. Here it is:

Some observations, now that I've hit the full-on anger stage:

1. Traveling calls do not get much easier than this. It was blatant, and it should have preserved the win for State.

2. If you ain't cheatin', you ain't tryin', son.

3. Not fully pictured: Cat Barber getting completely lost in the backcourt, setting up the potential for this disastrous outcome. What he was thinking, I do not know. That was no time to gamble for a steal--which is all I can really figure he was trying to do--and he was never close to causing a turnover anyhow.

4. This team is just laughably pathetic defensively, in every conceivable respect. The Wolfpack wouldn't have to be so often concerned with foul trouble if anybody on the roster moved his feet rather than reaching all over the damn place. If they weren't caught out of position because they're ball watching and/or forget to rotate and/or forget to close out and/or forget to communicate and/or forget any number of other very basic things, smaller portions of games would be threatened by the guys in stripes. That's kind of important.

Instead, we got a bunch of sulking children straight out of the Scott Wood put-hands-on-head-and-act-incredulous-at-every-call school of lazy defending. There are plenty of times when that sort of reaction is warranted, because Jamie Luckie exists and shit happens. We saw our share tonight. But at some point you have to shut the fuck up and look in the mirror.

That final possession, which saw Barber adrift in no-man's land, leading to the need for Ralston Turner--of all people--to make a play, is the perfect summation of Mark Gottfried's incompetence when it comes to this particular facet of the game. The no-call was awful, but it's what the Pack deserved. The shame of it is that they'll never learn anything from it.

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