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NC State picks up another easy win, this time over USC Upstate, 98-71

NCAA Basketball: Auburn at N.C. State Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Keatts made a point early that he was going to let the guys who hadn’t played that much get a lot of burn. The guys who we’d regard as the starters—Markell, Torin, Bryce, Daniels, Beverly—didn’t get a ton of burn. Keatts just wanted to see how the rest worked. It worked fine.

Blake Harris had his problems distributing the ball—he turned it over too often—but he was able to work that out without having to go to the bench. This was an instructive time for the team, and Keatts treated it that way.

There are a lot of things that State needs to refine before conference play starts, and Keatts shrewdly saw this as a time to begin doing that. Was that fun all the time? No. We’d all like to see more Markell Johnson and Torin Dorn, just because those guys are good and fun to watch

But this game was not about that—we know what Markell and Torin bring to this table. This game was figuring everybody else out.