DeShawn Delivering

The new basketball season has already delivered a lot of interesting changes and topics for discussion. One of the biggest story lines that has developed in the early season is the fantastic play of NC State junior center, DeShawn Painter. The following blog entry from the Fayetteville Observer is great reading today:

If you attended the Red-White scrimmage two weekends ago, what happened at the end of the N.C. State-Princeton game shouldn’t have stunned you.

Surprised? Sure. But not stunned.

There was point guard Lorenzo Brown, dribbling on the left wing with the score tied in the closing seconds, flipping the ball to an open teammate for an 18-footer from the top of the key. DeShawn Painter, a 6-foot-9 center, caught the pass and confidently released the shot, swishing it to give the Wolfpack a 60-58 victory.

“Believe it or not, he makes that shot consistently for us in practice,” coach Mark Gottfried said. “I like the fact he never hesitated. He caught it, and that’s a good shot for him.”

Painter proved that during the team’s intrasquad scrimmage on Nov. 5. Playing on the “White” team against five probable starters in “Red,” he repeatedly showed off his range in the opening 12-minute session, hitting jumpers and baseline turnarounds.

Painter looked different than the player who averaged 1.6 points as a freshman and 4.6 as a sophomore under Sidney Lowe. It was a glimpse into what could possibly transpire this season, when Painter has reached double figures in all three games. A suspension to C.J. Leslie created the opening for Painter, and he ranks second on the team with a 14.0 scoring average.

Keep in mind that ESPN ranked him the No. 64 overall prospect in the high school class of 2009, one spot ahead of Richard Howell. Painter signed with Florida in November of his senior season at Hargrave Military Academy and asked for his release in April. The Gators obliged, and he was a late signee with the Wolfpack.

The talent that made him a highly rated recruit is on display now, culminating with that game-winning shot Wednesday night.

“A gutsy play,” Painter said. “I had in my mind I was going to take that shot. As a basketball player, you can have opportunities like that. You’re going to be a hero and knock it down or you take it and miss it, people are going to get mad. It’s up to you whether you can live with it, and I can live with that.”

^This entry got me thinking about how excited we were when DeShawn originally committed to NC State. I actually remember writing the entry announcing the commitment from a hotel room in Louisville, Kentucky where I was on a business trip and trying to get the entry done before a dinner. I think you will enjoy looking back at the work by clicking here.

The recruitment of the one of the top remaining post prospects in country ended on Wednesday when Deshawn Painter chose NC State over Maryland after eliminating Virginia Tech from consideration earlier in the week.

Painter, of Chatham (Va.) Hargrave Military Academy, is a very athletic, ‘lengthy’ 6’9 power forward who has a well rounded game that includes the ability to rebound and block shots. After originally committing to Billy Donovan at the University of Florida, DeShawn ultimately changed his mind and re-opened his recruitment.

He is ranked as one of the Top 75 high school players in the country; Scout has given him four stars and Rivals has given him three stars. ESPNU ranks Painter #19 on their list of top power forwards in the country, achieving “score” of 92 as NC State’s other post commit – Richard Howell. Howell is ranked #20 on ESPNU’s list.

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11-12 Basketball

28 Responses to DeShawn Delivering

  1. TruthBKnown Returns 11/18/2011 at 2:50 PM #

    Nice read, and it’s good to see Painter developing and increasing his skill set.

    Just out of curiosity, do we have any reasonable suspicions as to why he de-committed from Florida?

  2. jbpackfan 11/18/2011 at 2:53 PM #

    Right on. DeShawn is playing great basketball.


    “Deshawn Painter chose NC State over Maryland”

    Wait a minute.. NOBODY chooses NC State over Maryland. This must be inaccurate. Maryland is the UCLA of the East and has its pick of top recruits.

  3. Shadow722 11/18/2011 at 2:54 PM #

    Not surprised. Sidney under-utilized: Painter, CJ Williams and JV. All are role-players that can be an asset to a team if used correctly.

    Sid, bless his heart, could not coach a team of college players. But that was then, and this is now; Coach Gott is not making the same mistakes, and we are finally playing like a team.

  4. kool k 11/18/2011 at 4:35 PM #

    “Just out of curiosity, do we have any reasonable suspicions as to why he de-committed from Florida?”


  5. wfpk99 11/18/2011 at 4:58 PM #

    ^^kool k…for the win!

  6. bruced123 11/18/2011 at 5:11 PM #

    I”m alittle sick of everyone saying negitive things about Sidney Lowe. He did bring in the talent that is playing on this team now. Who really knows how good they’d be if Sid was still coaching. Bigs take longer to develop. I want to THANK Sidney Lowe for his contribution to NCSU basketball and wish him the VERY BEST as an assistant in Utah.

  7. ryebread 11/18/2011 at 5:22 PM #

    I want to thank Painter for the hard work that he’s put in while at NC State. He’s transformed his body two different times — first from a stick to a huge, muscular guy and then to a muscular, cut guy. He’s always struck me as a gym rat and physically all that work has clearly paid off.

    He’s also really, really worked on his offensive game. He now has legitimate post moves, a jumper and can pair the two together. This is miles ahead of where he was when he first arrived.

    I want to thank all the coaches who helped him along the way. I thank Sid for getting him and for every coach who has worked with him. When someone improves this much, they have to want to and they have to typically have some help.

  8. StateFans 11/18/2011 at 5:23 PM #

    Who really knows how good they’d be if Sid was still coaching?

    Pretty much everyone…we saw it the last two years.

  9. Thinkpack17 11/18/2011 at 5:37 PM #

    We don’t even know if Gott can REALLY coach yet and the product on the floor is WAY better than it was in the past 5 years. I think that says it all.

    I liked Sid and I defended him a lot on this site. But I was wrong…he is just not a college coach.

  10. IMFletcherWolf 11/18/2011 at 5:49 PM #

    After watching the Red-White game before the season, Painter was the player who most impressed me. I can see a marked improvement in his overall game, both on offense and defense.

    Each player on the team seems to have a better understanding of his individual role and they all play with much more confidence than in years past.

    Let’s keep it going tomorrow vs. Vandy.

  11. packof81 11/18/2011 at 6:00 PM #

    It’s still early but Painter has been coming on strong. It’ll be interesting to see how this team develops. I hope Wood’s ankle heals fast.

  12. Howler 11/18/2011 at 6:12 PM #

    I, for one, appreciate all that Sid did as a player and all that he tried to do as a coach. But in hindsight, it was a ridiculous hire. No college coaching experience, last minute earning of degree, etc. The Gottfried hiring makes more sense every day that passes. I cannot name one player who really improved noticeably during Lowe’s tenure. I can already name a couple who have improved noticeably during Gottfried’s short time with us. Lots of reasons to be excited now.

  13. JSRy2k 11/18/2011 at 6:18 PM #

    I thought pre-season that Painter might be a guy due for a breakout this year. His development is HUGE to our team, no pun intended, and his mid-range game is a welcome post-opener in the absence of Wood’s 3-pt game.

    Also, mega-props to the new staff for coaching these guys up to put a rebound whuppin’ on our first three opponents. That never would have happened under Sid or Herb.

  14. bruced123 11/18/2011 at 6:52 PM #

    Julius Hodge has been working with Painter and Vandy over the summer. Think he wants on the staff.
    Sid’s mistake was his guard selection recruiting wise. Had he chose better there, who knows where we’d a be. I really like Gott, but don’t want to slam Sid any either.

  15. mak4dpak 11/18/2011 at 7:19 PM #

    bruced123, while I appreciate your undying loyalty to Sid, there is no way in hell we would be playing like we are now, we never played as a team, and Sid truly did not cut it as a Division I college coach, and is certainly best suited where he is, as an assistant on a pro team. His dismissal from the university was the right decision. He tried to succeed, and I supported him, but soon discovered as many did, that it just was not gonna happen. His record speaks for itself, and he was given ample time to turn things around, and he didn’t. That is just the facts, just like this article on Painter, a virtual bench warmer last year, and now all of a sudden he is making an impact. That is coaching.

  16. Pack1997 11/18/2011 at 7:30 PM #

    Bruced123, I don’t think thats accurate. Lo Brown was on this team last year and we sucked. We all could tell he was a stud. While I like Sid on a personal level he sucked as a college coach period. I have first hand knowledge he did not attend very many practices. Hard to be a good coach when you are not around. I use this to point out recruiting was the least of his worries, not to bash him as it sounds. Fact is he left some decent talent on this team.

    Painter has worked hard and it is showing, hopefully others players on the team notice and work just as hard.

  17. Wulfpack 11/18/2011 at 8:30 PM #

    Don’t let Sid’s allegiance to our university could your judgment about his coaching ability. In a word, he was horrible – one of the worst in the history of ACC basketball. The fact he never got a single interview after he was dismissed should tell you all you need to know.

    A very good man. We all have fond memories of him wearing the Wolfpack Red. But both he and his staff were clearly not up to the task.

    I’ve only seen us play twice and we are a MUCH better team than we ever were with Sid. Why? Because Gott and company know what in the hell they are doing. They are seasoned, experienced, accomplished COLLEGE basketball coaches. I’m just giddy about the future of Wolfpack hoops with this staff.

  18. Moose Hunter 11/18/2011 at 8:33 PM #

    Its so refreshing not to see the pg run up the court and turn for the play. Its also refreshing for the team to have an identity. We run a system. Everyone knows their roles. This will only get better.

  19. PoppaJohn 11/18/2011 at 9:22 PM #

    I’ve watched us spend YEARS slamming Sendek – let’s not do that with Sid. Sid is one of us. Sid’s hire was a mistake. His coaching staff was a mistake. But it really, really looked good on paper. The two national championship point guards, plus the last ACC champion point guard??? We all wanted him to succeed, no one more than Sid and Monte. IT would have been a fairy tale ending to 20+ years of misery. But the ACC demands the absolute best coaches to accomplish anything, and you certainly can’t figure it out as you go along. Sid had the heart, he had the NBA experience, college experience and personality to sell to recruits, but he just was not an ACC caliber coach.
    But that doesn’t make him a villan. He’s still checking the scores to see how the Pack is doing. He’s hating football season just like we are and probably thinking we need another coach. He’s family.

    The man knows a lot about basketball. He’d probably be the first to say the team is playing together better this year. He recruited these guys, he’s rooting for them. He will be happy for their success.

    Clearly it APPEARS the program is moving in the right direction. I LOVE what I’m seeing. But let’s give it time to find out if we are really turning the corner, or if this is just another five year countdown till the next coach.

    Let’s enjoy the positives, but drop the Sid hating. He doesn’t deserve it.

  20. PoppaJohn 11/18/2011 at 9:27 PM #

    PS – You want to appreciate DeShawn? Compare his game to JV. He’s clearly grown much more and improved every year and should be a real contributor this year. JV will forever be a spot player. He still looks lost at times and makes too many mistakes. DeShawn is coming into his game.

  21. OldWuf 11/19/2011 at 7:37 AM #

    I agree PoppaJohn. Sid would’ve given his right arm to return the Pack to basketball glory. It was a mistake bringing him in, but I always felt that he sorta did us a favor and bailed Jed out by coming. Herbie was also a pretty sharp guy but a decent AD would have put him out of our misery years sooner. I’ve had the privilege of seeing the Pack once already this year. Impressed so far.

  22. mak4dpak 11/19/2011 at 8:44 AM #

    I, or no one else is slamming or bashing Sid, but merely responding to comments that if Sid had this team, they would be excelling on the court, and we all know that would not be the case. I am grateful that he gave it a try, but it just did not happen. If it had happened, I would have no problem with him as coach. But again, it didn’t. We have not had good luck, when it comes to our former athletes becoming our coaches. Just like Amato. So that should be something we remember for future hires.

  23. Greywolf 11/19/2011 at 8:57 AM #

    Good to see Lowe’s recruits coming through.


  24. the_phisherman 11/19/2011 at 9:20 AM #

    The only way we can measure this team right now is by comparing them to last years team. Contrasting the performance of these guys year over year is not meant to be a personal attack on Sid. It’s meant to show how excited we are for the future and put our performances into context. We truly won’t know how good this team can be until we see some of the upcoming performances and probably some of league play.

  25. logarithm 11/19/2011 at 9:25 AM #

    I like that we have so many matchup problems for opposing defenses. Painter can hit long, if not 3-point shots as a big, so his defender has to be mobile and get out there. Scott Wood is a shooting guard with great length to shoot over smaller guys and demands a SF’s attention. CJ Leslie can’t shoot great for a SF but his leaping ability and athleticism demand a defender who can quickly follow a cut to the basket AND be strong/springy enough to win the rebound. Thomas de Thaey can shoot from distance as a big too. It’s all going to open up the half court and create more scoring opportunities.

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