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NC State’s opponents keep getting the runs. Pack success relies on getting stopped up. (Gives self high five)

I’m not apologizing

NCAA Basketball: North Carolina at N.C. State Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

It’s not like I came up with a title and then figured out how to write a post around it or anything. I mean, I have a table! With like, numbers and stuff.

Ok, seriously, I think the basketball dudes will be just fine. The Kevin Keatts era of games against UNC will be very entertaining track meets. The KK system works well against the vast majority of teams, but shows its weakness against teams built like UNC who are trying to move the ball as quickly as they are.

The biggest concern coming out of this game was the extended scoring runs the defense allowed the Heels. If the Pack are to compete near the top of the ACC, they will have to address stopping these, especially since it means they’re in a scoring drought. Sometimes it feels like the team is a little too confident in their ability to score in bunches and to crank up the pressure when they need, that they pull their foot off the gas. When you have the opportunity to beat a highly ranked team, or anyone really, you can’t let this happen.

The below table shows all the scoring runs of 5 points or greater in the last two games, Miami and UNC, both for and against.

Scoring runs for and agains, UNC and Miami

NC State never led against UNC, and gave up 6 separate scoring runs. The backbreaker was a 9 point run that lasted 4 minutes. This extended drought was one of the nails in the coffin, as UNC’s lead grew from 1 to 10.

Against Miami, the team fared much better, and the offense was able to establish their own pace especially in the second half. The runs were still there, and that didn’t feel good, but the Pack recovered. The difference was a 4 minute stretch where they erased a 10 point deficit and took a 3 point lead.

Kevin Keatts is still working out the kinks in his rotation, we are still in the early part of the ACC season. The game against Pitt will be a good test of his adjustments. If they can eliminate these issues through the rest of the season, the Wolfpack are poised for a very successful rest of the season.