After a week-long layoff, NC State will be back in action on Thursday night against Colorado State in the quarterfinal round of the NIT. The Wolfpack is hoping to take a long weekend in Texas, as the NIT semifinal round is scheduled for Saturday and the title game is Sunday.
First, though, the matter of getting past the Rams, who had a good year in the Mountain West and didn’t miss the NCAAs by much.
CSU is led offensively by Isaiah Stevens (6’0, 180) and David Roddy (6’5, 252). Roddy is an interesting matchup for all that bulk he brings to the court—he has a bull-in-a-china-shop style that can be pretty effective, not surprisingly. He’s just a career 25% three-point shooter, but he’s at 57% inside the arc, and he draws a lot of fouls. Roddy is also an excellent rebounder, as it is difficult to move a sack of cinderblocks.
Stevens is a good scorer himself, and an above-average three-point shooter—three-point shooting figures to be a theme for the Rams, who like Davidson are perimeter-oriented. Nine CSU players have played substantive minutes this season, and all nine have attempted 15+ threes.
CSU’s primary strength is its shooting—55% from two, 36% from three, 79% at the stripe—but the Rams have been prone to turnovers (222nd in TO%) and tend not to do much on the offensive glass (245th in OR%). So they don’t have a lot of recourse if they aren’t shooting well, and NC State can create a bit of insulation from said shooting by forcing turnovers at a decent clip.
Defensively, the Rams are above-average in all four factors without being exceptional at any one thing. It looks like they play a fair amount of zone, as opponents have attempted a lot of threes, and the Rams’ non-steal turnover rate is good. Opponents have hit only 30% of those threes, which is at least a little lucky on Colorado State’s part.
KenPom likes NC State by a point.