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NC State will have to overcome the bog of eternal stench that is Dayton

NCAA Basketball: Battle 4 Atlantis-Dayton at Wisconsin Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Remember that great Dayton team from a few years back, the one led by Obi Toppin, which probably would have been a one-seed in the tournament, if there had been a tournament? Yeah. Turns out Toppin, and his teammates on that great team, might have been preventing Anthony Grant from his worst tendencies.

Grant is one of the most cynical coaches in the country—an undoubtedly good basketball coach, but one who demands that there cannot be any additional basketball running required beyond the required basketball running. It’s effective, and it definitely helps you compete where you might otherwise have problems, but it’s not fun basketball. It’s a sorry place to begin, and a worse place to live. But it works!

Grant’s teams never run; they are routinely in the bottom 10% in pace, and this season is not an exception.

You can in fact play basketball like this.

Dayton in '23 Adj OE/DE (rk) eFG% TO% OR% 2FG% 3FG%
Dayton in '23 Adj OE/DE (rk) eFG% TO% OR% 2FG% 3FG%
Offense 105.5 (96) 45.6 (292) 22.5 (308) 29.7 (158) 51.1 (135) 26.2 (327)
Defense 89.5 (12) 37.8 (5) 18.6 (202) 24.3 (69) 37.4 (3) 25.6 (28)

Dayton has spent this season burying every game to death, and that disgusting thing that happened against Wisconsin that just happened, a 43-42 loss with 63 possessions, is a thing that happened, and that Dayton may dare repeat. And that’s what you have to worry about.