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NC State Welcomes the Pitt Panthers

The home stretch has begun. Let’s Go!!

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

When: Wednesday February 7, 7:00 PM ET

Where: PNC

TV: ESPNU

Opponent: Pitt Panthers (Q2)

Pomeroy Prediction: Wolfpack 72-69

Wolfpack Snapshot: NET 78, 9th in ACC NET rankings

Wolfpack Season: (15-7, 7-4) Home 11-2, Away 3-3, Neutral 1-2

Only 4 home games left, we need to win them all.

Wolfpack Injury Report:

MJ Rice will sit out the remainder of the season and apply for a redshirt.

Opponent Overview:

The Panthers (14-8, 5-6) (NET 63, 7th in ACC NET rankings) are coming off a 24-12 season, tied for 3rd in the ACC, that ended with a second-round loss to Xavier in the NCAAT. That was a senior led team, they lost 4 of last season’s top 5 scorers to graduation, and because of that were picked 9th in this season’s ACC preseason polls.

They return last season’s 2nd team All ACC forward Blake Hinson, Finnish center Federiko Federiko, and have added High Point transfer forward Zack Austin and two 4 star freshman guards, Jaland Lowe and Carlton Carrington, to fill out their starting lineup. Plus they added high scoring guard Ishmael Leggett, a transfer from Rhode Island who is currently coming off the bench.

Team Statistical Comparison

Team PPG FG% 3PT% 3PT pg Reb pg Ast pg TO pg ST pg BL pg
Team PPG FG% 3PT% 3PT pg Reb pg Ast pg TO pg ST pg BL pg
NCS 75.7 43.7% 33.0% 7.2 36.1 13.3 9.6 8.1 3.1
Pitt 75.6 43.2% 34.3% 9.3 38.5 13.8 9.9 6.7 5

Their ACC Rankings of Note – Conference Play:

  • 13th Offense
  • 6th Defense
  • 13th Team FG Percentage
  • 2nd Team Offensive Rebounds
  • 15th Team Defensive Rebounds

Pitt Season So Far: Key Wins / Losses

Good Wins Bad Losses ACC - Wins ACC - Losses
Good Wins Bad Losses ACC - Wins ACC - Losses
Missouri (Q3) Louisville Clemson
Duke Syracuse x 2
Georgia Tech North Carolina
Wake Forest Duke
Notre Dame Miami

Player Notes:

  • Blake Hinson – 9th in ACC in scoring, 1st in 3PT FG Per Game / 3PT Made in a game (9)
  • Blake Hinson – leads team in FGA, FGM, 3PTA, 3PTM, FTA, FTM, scoring (obviously)
  • Zack Austin – 5th in ACC in blocked shots per game

Pitt Probable Starters

Player Class Pos Height Weight PPG 3PT% 3PTApg REB ASST STL BLK
Player Class Pos Height Weight PPG 3PT% 3PTApg REB ASST STL BLK
Carlton Carrington FR G 6'5" 190 13.7 29.4% 6.2 5.1 4.2 1 0.3
Blake Hinson SR F 6'8" 230 18 42.0% 8 5 0.6 1 0.1
Jaland Lowe FR G 6'3" 170 7.7 31.5% 2.5 2.4 2.7 1 0
Federiko Federiko JR C 6'11" 225 4.9 0.0% 0 5 1 1 1.4
Zack Austin RS JR F 6'7" 210 7 26.6% 2.9 4.2 1 1 1.4

Keys To The Game

The Panthers lean on two factors for success:

  1. Offensive rebounding - They are 2nd in the ACC in OR. They are 13th in FG percentage, so rely heavily on rebounding their missed 3PT shots and scoring second chance points.
  2. 3PT shooting - They live by the 3PT shot, they take a lot of them, and they shoot them well. 44.6% of their shots are 3PT, compared to 34.8% of ours. In ACC play they average 25.7 per game, tied with Georgia Tech for first. They are 2nd in team 3PT % in ACC play.

For The Wolfpack to Win:

Slow down the star – In most of our games this season the player to focus on has been a guard, normally assigned to Jayden Taylor to defend. Blake Hinson is a 6’8” power forward, a mismatch for many teams. He is an excellent 3PT shooter (37.8% in ACC). In ACC play he has taken 63% of his shots from the 3PT line – more than anyone else in the ACC. He went 7-7 from 3PT in their win against Duke. He has scored 20+ 9 times so far this season, and he seldom leaves the court. In their last game versus Notre Dame he played 39 minutes.

Rebound at all positions – The Panthers have 6 players averaging 4+ rebounds per game / 3 of them averaging 5+. We need to get our share of the long rebounds off the 3PT shots.

Don’t Let Them Get Hot from 3PT – Hinson (42%) & Carrington (29.4%) individually take more than twice as many as anyone else on their team, but although lower volume shooters, Lowe shoots 36.4% and Leggett (bench) shoots 44%.