Monday Musings

NC STATE BASKETBALL
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Joe Giglio (N&O)
NC State grinds out 70-57 win over Georgia Tech

Georgia Tech coach Brian Gregory, whose teams are noted for their defensive intensity, noticed a difference between the Wolfpack’s defense from this game and the Jan.9 win in Raleigh.

“When they are dialed in, they are pretty good,” Gregory said. “They have all the ingredients to be a good defensive team.”

Being dialed in on a consistent basis has been an issue for the Wolfpack this season and there was a lapse in the first half, which allowed the Jackets to make a 16-4 run to cut a 14-point lead to 32-30.”

“We’re a great defensive team when we want to be,” Brown said.

Five times in the second half, Georgia Tech made it a two-point game but the Wolfpack never relinquished the lead, in large part because of its defense.

“Everybody played good defense,” Leslie said. “We were moving, we were over here and over there and all over the court when we needed to be.”

[snip]

With Virginia’s loss earlier Sunday, the Wolfpack moved into a fourth-place tie with the Cavaliers. N.C. State would lose any tiebreaker involving the Cavaliers because of its Jan. 29 loss at Charlottesville, Va.

Gottfried is only worried about his team with another win down and two ACC games to go.

“The bottom line is that we’ve got to take care of what we can take care of,” Gottfried said. “So, it really doesn’t matter what anybody else does.”

Akula Wolf (BackingthePack.com)
NC State Overcomes Poor Shooting Performance To Beat Georgia Tech, 70-57

It wasn’t exactly the epitome of sexiness, but it was NC State’s most decisive road win in conference play, and victory is all the pretty I need anyway. Georgia Tech managed to stay within a possession or two for most of the second half, but there would be no late fade for the Wolfpack this time. Beginning around the seven-minute mark, NC State went on a 10-2 run that pushed its lead to 10 points with two minutes and some change remaining. A win was far from a given at that point, but the Yellow Jackets continued to struggle from the field and couldn’t mount a serious challenge. Tyler Lewis and Lorenzo Brown combined to knock down nine free throws in the final minute, and we were left mercifully with nothing to stress about.

Richard Howell was huge in the first half, and his timing could not have been better, what with Brown, Calvin Leslie, Scott Wood shooting a combined 1-10 from the field. The Pack didn’t make a single three-pointer in the half, so it’s a bit amazing that we had the halftime lead.

Georgia Tech was able to keep close on the strength of some outstanding offensive rebounding, and one reason why State was eventually able to take control of the game was its improvement on the glass over the final 20 minutes. Tech grabbed more than half their misses in the first half, but it was limited to 29.2% in the second. Tech definitely could have used a few more opportunities–the Jackets made just nine of 28 two-pointers in the second half. That is rather not good.

Associated Press
NC State Stays Hot, Beats Georgia Tech 70-57

Richard Howell scored 18 points – all in the first half – and North Carolina State continued its late-season surge in the ACC by beating Georgia Tech 70-57 on Sunday.

With Howell contained in the second half, C.J. Leslie scored 11 of his 13 points in the final 20 minutes as N.C. State (21-8, 10-6 Atlantic Coast Conference) took its fifth win in its last six games. T.J. Warren had 14 points.

With the win, N.C. State moved into a tie with fourth-place Virginia in the race for one of four first-round byes in the ACC tournament. Boston College beat Virginia 53-52 on Sunday.

N.C. State led by 14 in the first half. Georgia Tech (15-13, 5-11) fought back to cut the deficit to one point late in the first half and again early in the second half, but the Yellow Jackets couldn’t complete the comeback.

NC STATE BASEBALL

GoPack.com
Pack Wins Another Nail-Biter on Turner’s RBI Single

No. 10 NC State knocked off Coastal Carolina 5-4 to win its second extra-inning game in as many days and to extend its winning streak to 10 straight.

The Wolfpack (10-1) scored in the first, but Coastal Carolina (4-6) evened the score in the bottom half. Another exchange saw the Pack score three in the fifth before the Chanticleers chipped away with one in the bottom fifth and two in the seventh to knot it up at 4-4. State finally emerged victorious with a run in the 10th to win 5-4.

Trea Turner had the game-winning hit in a 4-for-6 performance with two runs and one RBI. Turner scored in the first to improve to 15-for-15 on scoring when reaching with less than two outs, but saw his streak snapped on his single in the 10th. Sam Morgan came through as well with a 2-for-4 game including two runs scored.

Ryan Wilkins (2-0) captured the victory with a commanding 3 2/3 innings of hitless ball to finish the game. Grant Sasser stabilized the Pack after a rocky first inning, coming in as relief and shutting out Coastal for 3 2/3 innings.

[snip]

NC State returns to action on Tuesday, March 5 with a 6 p.m. road test at Elon. Fans can follow along on Twitter via @NCStateBaseball, with live stats on GoPack.com, or over the airwaves on 88.1 WKNC.

NC STATE WOMEN’S BASKETBALL

GoPack.com
NC State Shoots Down Clemson, 63-47, in Regular Season Finale

The NC State women’s basketball team shot 60.9 percent in the second half to bring home a 63-47 victory at Clemson on Sunday in the final game of the regular season.

NC State (15-15, 7-11 ACC) will face Clemson for a third time this season when the two meet in the first round of the ACC Tournament on Thursday, Mar. 7, at 2 p.m., in Greensboro, N.C., at the Greensboro Coliseum.

Len’Nique Brown, Markeisha Gatling and Myisha Goodwin-Coleman each scored 14 points to pace another balanced attack for the Wolfpack. Lakeesa Daniel hauled in a career-high 11 rebounds, while Brown once again led in assists with six.

NCAA

NCAA Logo

Jay Coleman, Mike DuMond, & Allen Lynch
NCAA Tournament “Dance Card

Below are rankings of all NCAA Division I men’s basketball teams through the games of Thursday, February 28, 2013, according to the “Dance Card” formula developed by Jay Coleman of the University of North Florida, Mike DuMond of Charles River Associates, and Allen Lynch of Mercer University.

The Dance Card is a formula designed to predict which teams will receive at-large tournament bids from the NCAA Tournament Selection Committee. To get the rankings shown below, we have removed the historical conference-related biases found in the past committee decisions on which the Dance Card was based. In other words, if the current committee is free of the same biases, its decisions should closely match the predictions below.

Last season the “biased” Dance Card correctly predicted 35 of 37 at-large bids (95%). The “unbiased” version correctly predicted 36 of 37 bids (97%), suggesting that last year’s committee closely followed the performance-related patterns of past committees, without also showing similar historical biases.

In addition to the Dance Card value and ranking, also shown is the probability that a team with the same profile would have gotten an at-large bid in past years, if today was Selection Sunday. (Although the bubble line reflects this year’s 68-team (37 at-large bid) field, the probability shown reflects a 65-team (34 at-large bid) Tournament.) The RPI ranks are from the old RPI formula, in which wins on the road and losses at home are weighted equally. This is the version of the RPI used in the Dance Card’s development, and the version used to generate the predictions in all past years.

Rank..Team…….Dance Card…..Chance of Bid….RPI Rank

2…….. Duke……. 10.4994… 100.00%… 1
8…….. Michigan… 8.7029… 100.00%… 14
9…….. Miami FL… 8.6950… 100.00%… 3
17……. Oklahoma St……. 5.1568… 100.00%… 26
29……. North Carolina St… 3.4191… 99.97%… 27
32……. North Carolina… 3.2911… 99.95%… 23
37……. Virginia…. 2.1406… 98.38%… 61
45……. Kentucky…. 0.9004… 81.60%… 48

THE BUBBLE BURST HERE

52…… Belmont… -0.3998… 34.47%… 38
61…… Arizona St…. -2.0477… 2.03%… 68
63…… Massachusetts… -2.8544… 0.22%… 56
66…… Maryland… -3.2157… 0.07%… 65
71…… Stanford… -3.8688… 0.01%… 64
75…… Florida St…. -4.8124… 0.00%… 71
103….. St. Bonaventure… -8.8364… 0.00%… 111
111….. Georgia Tech… -10.3503… 0.00%… 104
120….. Western Michigan… -11.6616… 0.00%… 132
127….. Clemson… -12.4678… 0.00%… 135
133….. Wake Forest… -12.9366… 0.00%… 128
152….. Boston College… -15.0635… 0.00%… 112
170….. Virginia Tech… -17.8923… 0.00%… 133

Jerry Palm (CBSSports.com)
2013 NCAA Basketball Tournament Prediction

Bracket updated on: Fri Mar 1 07:41:32 2013

Projected Champion: Miami (FL) (2)
At-large bids: Duke (2), North Carolina (9), North Carolina State (8)

Joe Lunardi (ESPN.com)
Bracketology

Updated: March 1st, 2013

Miami (1), Duke (2), UNC (7), NCSU (8), UVA (10)

About 1.21 Jigawatts

Class of '98, Mechanical Engineer, State fan since arriving on campus and it's been a painful ride ever since. I live by the Law of NC State Fandom, "For every Elation there is an equal and opposite Frustration."

12-13 Basketball Baseball College Basketball Non-Revenue

41 Responses to Monday Musings

  1. BJD95 03/04/2013 at 7:45 AM #

    In my view, the player rotation yesterday was perfect. Very nice flow and energy among the various combinations. Nice to see a full 7 man rotation develop like it has.

  2. TLeo 03/04/2013 at 8:16 AM #

    All we can do is try to win the last two games and whatever happens, happens. It sure would have been nice if we hadn’t been so totally crappy against UVA and WF so we didn’t have to depend on what other teams do.

  3. Wufpacker 03/04/2013 at 8:51 AM #

    Sunday was definitely a good day to be a Pack fan.

    Really, the only blemish on the day was that Carolina didn’t lose. :D

  4. triadwolf 03/04/2013 at 9:00 AM #

    There’s not a team in the nation that doesn’t have a couple wtf losses this year, thus the revolving door at the top of the polls. We are right about where I thought we’d be this year minus Miami’s emergence. It was always a stretch that this team would compete for a regular season title with such a short bench and 3 freshman contributing significant minutes.

    Assuming they take care of business and win out, I believe the team will be watching games next Thursday. Hopefully UMd doesn’t lose both games to UVA and UNC just to screw us, although I think they despise the holes more than us.

  5. ryebread 03/04/2013 at 9:13 AM #

    BJD: I agree on the player rotation and posted that on the post game thread. That rotation was great and everyone contributed with quality minutes.

    I have been slammed for saying this, but I honestly feel with Painter or Jefferson, we’d be a legit Final Four team. We’re about one real sub on the interior from being able to play far more aggressively down low.

  6. Texpack 03/04/2013 at 9:21 AM #

    The performance yesterday was one that makes you think this team can make a deep run in the NCAA’s. One 3pt field goal and a less than stellar shooting night all around, and we win a road game by 13.

    When TJ Warren had his minutes virtually eliminated for a couple of games due to lack of defense, he got the message and has really picked it up on that end of the floor. We are really working hard on defense and on most nights we can beat 85-90% of the teams in the country while playing very little D. If we keep this up, we will win it all in Greensboro.

    Calvin’s effort yesterday was excellent. He had two or three mental bricks, but he didn’t force things as much as he has at times this season. Purvis and Lewis have both figured out their roles and that makes us much better going forward.

  7. GAWolf 03/04/2013 at 9:25 AM #

    Trea Turner is an absolute gamer. Assuming his attitude and clutch performing is contagious, this baseball season could be very, very, very special.

  8. Khan 03/04/2013 at 9:30 AM #

    “’We’re a great defensive team when we want to be,’ Brown said.”

    “[Good defensively]…when we needed to be.” (Leslie)

    You need to WANT TO…All. The. Time.

    You NEED TO BE…All. The. Time.

    Unfortunately, we don’t need to or want to nearly enough to be a great team. That’s my biggest gripe this whole year. It’s like at times, the desire and want-to is there in spades and we play like world beaters. And at other times, several of the fellas just disappear, mentally break down, or act as if they’re just apathetic to the game.

    It’s like we have the ingredients to be way better, physically, but we lack the mental thoughness and commitment to put it together. It’s frustrating.

    On the positive side, we won, and that’s great. Hopefully, we can build a little momentum and run strong into the tournament. But if we have these lapses where we don’t feel we “want to” or “need to”, then it’s going to be a fairly short run.

  9. 61Packer 03/04/2013 at 9:30 AM #

    “We’re a great defensive team when we want to be”- L. Brown.

    Too many players on this State team haven’t wanted to play defense since day one, let alone play great defense.

    What might have been…………..

  10. Khan 03/04/2013 at 9:35 AM #

    One more thing: Howell is the model of how an athlete should improve. He has improved tremendously in every single phase of the game. If others would follow his example, there’s no telling how good we could be.

  11. vtpackfan 03/04/2013 at 9:43 AM #

    What would ou record be without Trea Turner and Ryan Wilken?I know it’s really but Clemson on weekend. It’s a given that you can’t lose many of the FSU/Clemson games and jump the hurdle in the Atlantic division.

    UNC has a tough week ahead. Turgeon has proven he can exact a game plan defensively against one dimensional offenses who go small line ups. With Kelly back I don’t know they have the guns to match Duke.

    Perfect scenario is a 4 seed in Atlanta with hopefully a tired legged Tar Heel squad from having to chase Eric Green all over the earth the day before. I’ll feel extactic in any scenario as long as we beat Fake Worrest on Senior Nite.

  12. VaWolf82 03/04/2013 at 9:58 AM #

    Over the last two weeks, Palm and Lunardi have disagreed over UVA. A UVA win on Friday in the ACCT would likely remove all doubt.

    But they have both had State at an 8/9 seed. State needs to win enough over the last two weeks to move to a 6/7 seed.

  13. FergusWolf 03/04/2013 at 10:08 AM #

    Despite what we may perceive as the failings of our current basketball team, put me in the group that is jumping for joy that we are discussing happy-to-glad issues (NCAA tournament seeding) rather than glum-to-happy (NCAA bubble)

  14. jbpackfan 03/04/2013 at 10:13 AM #

    Something to think about: State is 3-5 on the road in the ACC. Duke is 4-4. It is tough to win on the road and State has held its own despite a couple they’d like to have back.

  15. nav 03/04/2013 at 10:35 AM #

    Which is the worse? Hoping for a UMd win or State just playing as the 5 seed.
    Like many on this site, pulling for UMd is next to impossible. I absolutely hate those bastards.

  16. compsciwolf 03/04/2013 at 10:40 AM #

    I agree with FergusWolf on this one. I know we didn’t destroy the world this year (so far) like everyone wanted, but you know what? Everyone at this point agrees we’re in the tournament, instead of sweating it out on selection Sunday. That’s a huge improvement over past years. Our RPI is high, our SOS is high, our record is good, the team is fun to watch. I could ask for no more in year 2 of a new coach.

    This team has improved over last year’s, we just tend to forget that because of the amazing run that last year gave us.

  17. maverick_ncsu 03/04/2013 at 10:41 AM #

    We still need to win out and at least 2 at the ACCT. An 8 seed would be worse than last year’s seeding given that you have to play a #1 in the second round.

  18. DC_wolf 03/04/2013 at 11:00 AM #

    North Carolina St a 99.97% lock for the dance according to ‘Dance Card’? Thank you, DY and CG, thank you… And thank you, Jigs, for another most excellent round-up. And ryebread, I won’t slam you – I wish Painter &/or Jefferson were here too!

    Minor muse: NCSU’s current combined 45 wins over this year & last is the most since the ’88 / ’89 seasons; no one on the current roster was even born then.

    Major muse: everyone of our current starters reminds me of another current or former great player –
    Purvis – Dwayne Wade
    Brown – Rajon Rondo
    Calvin – James Worthy (I know, I know – bugs me but I can’t help seeing the similarity…)
    Wood – Chris Mullin (another vanilla assassin who made it all the way to the Dream Team)
    Howell – Dennis Rodman (not physically so much as his approach to the game, go ahead & book the boards…)

  19. FergusWolf 03/04/2013 at 11:16 AM #

    On the 45 wins….

    87-88/88-89 total was 46
    81-82/82-83 total was 48

    of course
    72-73/73-74 total as 57 (now that’s mark to shoot for)

    going back a litte farther,
    53-54/54-55 total was 54
    54-55/55-56 total was 52

    So, with a minimum of 4 games to go (2 regular season, 1 ACC tourney, 1 NCAA tourney), it’s not out of the question for us to win 4 more games, putting us a 49, which would be the 4th best in the ACC era (we had 7 straight years of 25+ wins at the end of the Soutern Conference era).

    Maxing things out, we potentially have 12 games let (2 regular season, 4 ACC tourney, 6 NCAA tourney), so, even 57 isn’t mathematically out of reach.

    When was the last time we were talking about numbers like this?

  20. Wulfpack 03/04/2013 at 11:46 AM #

    I say Howell is Charles Oakley or Barkley. Rodman had little ofemsive game.

  21. Pack78 03/04/2013 at 11:54 AM #

    My GT bro was at the game; re the lighting (I do not have ESPNU, so I was following on Gametracker), he stated that the lighting at Tech is ‘very much NBA-like, dim in the seating areas, very bright on the court’. Re our outside shooting difficulties (airballs, etc), could the lighting have been a factor?

  22. DC_wolf 03/04/2013 at 12:13 PM #

    Fergus, note I said ” the most since” – it’s been an unfortunate desert in between…

    But those are some kick@s$ numbers you pulled together!! I can look @ stuff like that forever…

    An I could see Barkley maybe for Howell – but he’s got to pick up the ppg… ; )

  23. Rick 03/04/2013 at 12:18 PM #

    “In my view, the player rotation yesterday was perfect. Very nice flow and energy among the various combinations. Nice to see a full 7 man rotation develop like it has”

    I would like to see Lewis get 15 instead of 11 minutes but I am right there with you.

    The question for me is this…
    Am I glad Zo had the injury so we were able to expand our player rotation and thus make a tournament run easier? Or do I wish we had some of those wins back thus ensuring we are not playing on Thursday which makes a tournament run easier and lessens the fan whine factor?
    I lean towards the former. When we play D and Calvin plays well we are a very very good team.

  24. Dogbreath 03/04/2013 at 12:20 PM #

    “…I honestly feel with Painter or Jefferson, we’d be a legit Final Four team. We’re about one real sub on the interior from being able to play far more aggressively down low.”

    Which is why Vandenberg sucking complete donkey balls this year is so unfortunate.

  25. JohnGalt78 03/04/2013 at 12:25 PM #

    Pack78…great observation. I suspect you might be right. I noted here last night that the logo on the court was puke colored. Our uniforms seemed to have some pink in there as well. As a fellow blogger (obviously an engineer) pointed out, the broadcast techs were probably struggling to reach a reasonable compromise with the hue balance due to the weird lighting. Another home court advantage I suppose.

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