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Putting NC State’s performance against FSU in context

That kind of night does not come often.

NCAA Basketball: Florida State at N.C. State Jaylynn Nash-USA TODAY Sports

Cracking 1.3 points per possession in a game is relatively rare—even the No. 1 offense in any given season doesn’t average a number like that on a nightly basis, and lots and lots of teams will go through an entire season without ever posting 1.3 PPP in a game.

So NC State’s performance against Florida State on Wednesday night, a win in which the Wolfpack averaged 1.36 PPP, is definitely noteworthy. And as you might guess, a performance like that is even rarer in league games.

I looked back through the KenPom archive, which goes back to 2001-2002, for other times NC State scored at least 1.3 PPP against an ACC opponent. There’s only 11 such cases, and only seven came in the regular season, including last night.

Here they are:

1.39 (vs. UVA, 2022)
1.37 (vs. VT, 2007)
1.36 (vs. FSU, 2023)
1.36 (vs. Wake, 2011)
1.33 (vs. VT, 2015)
1.33 (vs. BC, 2006)
1.33 (vs. UVA, 2002 ACCT)
1.32 (vs. Duke, 2016 ACCT)
1.32 (vs. Wake, 2012)
1.32 (vs Wake, 2005 ACCT)
1.31 (vs. Pitt, 2015 ACCT)

The 2022 team somehow topping the list is a pretty serious upset. For one night at least, those guys made history.

And NC State did in fact manage to lose one of these games: Duke came out on top, 92-89, in that 2016 ACC tourney game. None of these performances came in a true road game, which I’d imagine is typical for every school. It makes sense that the comfort of playing at home is more conducive to channeling an NBA Jam-style heater.

You never know, of course, but what we saw last night we probably won’t see again this year. Only the 2015 NC State team managed to hit 1.3 PPP in more than one league game. If Baby T and the gang feel like doing that again, though, I’m not gonna complain.