NC State’s NCAA tournament run begins against the Campbell Camels, a team that looks every bit as impressive on paper as you’d expect from a 44-win club.
Offensively, the Camels boast an impressive combination of speed and power, best exemplified by senior Jarrod Belbin, who has hit 19 home runs and is a perfect 25-25 on stolen bases this season. Senior outfielder Tyler Halstead has almost swiped as many bags (32) as NC State has as a team (34). So there’s just a wee bit of contrast in styles there.
Offense At A Glance
Speedy and aggressive base running teams like Campbell were not common in the ACC, and NC State’s opponents attempted only 53 stolen bases all season (they were successful about 70% of the time). Jacob Cozart has thrown out nine of 42 stolen base attempts.
Controlling that Campbell running game will be a challenge, but the flip side of that is sometimes these aggressive teams will run themselves into some ill-advised outs. They didn’t have to worry about that too much against your average Big South team, clearly.
Pitching At A Glance
The Camels have some impressive power arms in the bullpen, though those guys also tend to be a tad wild. Aaron Rund has 65 strikeouts in 56.3 innings but has allowed seven homers and thrown 11 wild pitches. Cade Boxrucker has 56 strikeouts in 39 innings (that’s real good) but has also issued 27 walks. Cameron O’Brien has hit 12 batters in 36 innings.
Those guys have the stuff to get themselves out of any jam they might create for themselves, but self-inflicted wounds from the pen will be something worth watching.