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UNC vs. NC State preview: It's only the most important game of the year

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Michael Shroyer-USA TODAY Sports
UNC Offense In ACC Games
Four Factors Percent ACC Rank
eFG% 48.9 7
Turnover Rate 17.3 8
Off Reb Rate 40.0 1
FT Rate
37.6 8

What went right in the first meeting

  • NC State only turned the basketball over 12 times in 77 possessions or so, which is pretty dang good and I was told there needed to be a positive thing in here somewhere.

What was broke as heck in the first meeting

  • At this point, games in the Dean Dome run together. In any hope of recalling distinctive traits, I have to methodically page through a mental notebook like a fourth grade teacher looking through some old assignments for a standout paper. "No, that wasn't the one," *wets thumb, flips page* "no, that wasn't the one" *wets thumb, flips page* "no, that wasn't the one" *wets thumb, flips page* "oh here we-- no, that's not the one." *quits job, moves to Australia*

Do this thing here and we win, I promise, or your money back

  • The role that officiating plays in this series is fascinating. I'm getting closer to being convinced that this is some sort of massively self-defeating mental block for State. It seems like we're coming in expecting to get screwed, playing against ghosts, when the reality is that the Pack's fundamental shortcomings create all sorts of problems against a team with more talent and better coaching.
  • Here's a real tidy solution: rebound at the defensive end. In league play, UNC's free throw attempts and its opponents' free throw attempts are almost even. The Heels aren't particularly good in any category save offensive rebounds, which often lead to cheap fouls. The Heels could end up shooting 60% or some nonsense like that, but if it's a typical UNC game, preventing second chances is going to be a huge deal.
UNC Defense In ACC Games
Four Factors Percent ACC Rank
eFG% 47.0 5
Turnover Rate 18.2 6
Off Reb Rate 30.3 4
FT Rate
40.6 11