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Who the heck are these people: A statistical overview of NC State's non-conference schedule

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Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

NC State's non-conference schedule release on Friday included a lot of information about each team but lacked some very super important tempo-free contextifying. I mean, you cannot live without this stuff, so if I hadn't written this post, you'd be dead. You're welcome.

Below is a snapshot of each opponent with a handful of key statistics from last season. All of these programs will be affected to some degree by roster turnover, and some have changed coaches--bye, Herb :((((--but nonetheless this should provide a decent estimate for what we can expect.

2014-15 stats Pomeroy Rtg Tempo (rank) Off_Eff (rank) Def_Eff (rank) 3FGA/FGA (rank) Effective Height (rank)
William & Mary 130 64.1 (207) 111.7 (27) 109.0 (301) 42.8 (23) -0.9 (237)
IUPUI 286 63.8 (227) 92.0 (330) 101.3 (143) 26.2 (330) -2.0 (292)
USA 299 69.0 (21) 99.6 (230) 110.9 (324) 34.8 (158) -0.6 (212)
Arizona St. 63 66.3 (102) 107.2 (69) 97.7 (79) 36.3 (119) +0.2 (157)
LSU 44 69.7 (14) 106.2 (84) 94.7 (32) 28.4 (303) +3.1 (26)
Marquette 110 64.2 (202) 101.5 (183) 97.6 (74) 35.4 (143) -0.5 (203)
Winthrop 159 65.9 (117) 103.5 (141) 103.6 (189) 39.1 (55) -1.8 (281)
Michigan 75 60.1 (341) 107.5 (66) 99.7 (107) 40.6 (39) -0.5 (206)
Bucknell 193 64.9 (167) 104.2 (121) 106.9 (263) 32.8 (217) -0.1 (181)
USF 295 64.0 (211) 96.5 (282) 107.0 (266) 26.1 (331) +1.0 (109)
High Point 126 62.7 (282) 106.1 (87) 103.5 (183) 30.6 (262) -1.9 (289)
Missouri 214 62.6 (285) 98.5 (245) 102.4 (163) 35.0 (154) +2.5 (41)
UNCG 275 65.9 (116) 97.9 (253) 106.6 (257) 31.5 (243) -0.5 (207)
Northeastern 115 63.6 (243) 105.8 (93) 102.1 (159) 30.5 (266) -0.1 (180)


State opens the year with the type of mid-major that I consider a nightmare. Bill & Mary not only go bombs away from three, they're also legitimately good at that end of the floor. The loss of efficiency machine Marcus Thornton to the NBA is a big deal, and as a result the Tribe may not finish sixth in eFG% again, but they aren't going to fall off a cliff, either.

Fortunately they play defense like a team made up entirely of Tyler Lewises. Well, that's probably unfair. It's more like a team with three or four Tyler Lewises. So State will score effectively, and should score more than enough, it's just always frightening when your opponent is comfortable taking 25 or 30 threes.

As you can see, there are a couple more three-heavy headaches on the schedule, though none to quite the degree of Tony Shaver's Williamsburg radicals.

Elsewhere, High Point, Northeastern, Bucknell, and Winthrop will present challenges for the Pack. This is the group of mid-majors that NC State's staff is banking on to have good seasons and contend within their respective leagues. Bucknell should win the Patriot League. High Point returns a great scorer in John Brown, who averaged 19.3 PPG last season. Northeastern won the CAA tourney title in 2015 (topping Bill & Mary in the final), then gave Notre Dame a run for its money in the NCAAs.

State has to take care of business in those games, then bid those teams a fond farewell, wishing them many victories ahead. Odds are good that will work out nicely in at least a few cases, and that's what can separate the Wolfpack from another potential at-large team once we're in March.

Of course, we're probably gonna lose four or five games, tops, so the bubble won't be an issue.