Bruce Pearl was complimentary of NC State and the challenge the Wolfpack presents with its offense—particularly in its use of ball screens with Markell Johnson. NC State is indeed off to a great start, and when Pearl calls State “as good of an offensive team as we’ll play,” he is not wrong.
That’s not even an exaggeration in the tried-and-true build-up-the-other-team pre-game standard. NC State ranks sixth nationally in adjusted offensive efficiency, which is ahead of anybody in the SEC (and ACC, for that matter). The Pack ranks in the top 60 in 2FG%, 3FG%, and FT%.
It’s not looking like a great year for offense in the SEC, though Auburn has been an exception—the Tigers are one of two SEC schools in the top 20 in offensive efficiency. They’ve done a good job maintaining consistency despite losing some key pieces off their Final Four team. But more on that later.