The Morning After

Last night, the youthful Pack falls at home to the #25 Mizzou Tigers out of the SEC.

All things considered, that sentence doesn’t sound all that terrible.   In spite of recent successes, I hadn’t (and still haven’t) built up any undue expectations of this team, as I know they are still a work in progress.  Nor did I have any expectations for last night’s contest in particular.  A win was most definitely NOT expected.

Even at home, a loss to a ranked opponent out of a BCS conference, especially by a young and still developing team like NC State, shouldn’t be one that is still sticking in my craw the following morning.

Kyle Washington vs Missouri - December 28, 2013

Kyle Washington vs Missouri – December 28, 2013

So then, why is it?

Our young Wolfpack showed flashes of brilliance last night.   The emergence of Kyle Washington was wonderful to see (10 pts, 2 blks).   TJ Warren was his normal wonderful self (24  pts, 13 rebs), aside from becoming overly enamored with his own 3pt stroke (that’s not your game TJ….please stop that).

They also showed flashes of inexperience, as Vandenberg, Barber, Freeman and Anya all but disappeared on the big stage (though one can easily argue that Vandy and Cat had some help of the striped variety for their disappearing acts).

Bottom line….

The Pack held a 53-43 advantage with 8:56  to play and then were outscored 25-11 the rest of the way.  Missouri executed down the stretch, the Pack, generally speaking, did not.


Wolfpack Falls to No. 25 Missouri 68-64 (

RALEIGH, N.C. – NC State sophomore forward T.J. Warren scored a game-high 24 points and tied his career high with 13 rebounds, but the Wolfpack could not pull off the upset, falling to No. 25 Missouri 68-64 on Saturday night at PNC Arena.

Warren notched his sixth career double-double (his fourth of the season) but the Wolfpack could not overcome a hot-shooting Missouri team that closed the game by connecting on 5-of-6 from beyond the arc and 5-of-6 from the free throw line over the final eight minutes of action.

“Missouri made some big time plays at the right points in the game,” NC State head coach Mark Gottfried said. “That was the difference in the game. They made three big three pointers that really changed the game. I thought we were in a position to win the game, but we have to do a better job. We have to rebound the ball better. Whether it’s getting defensive rebounds, not giving up a three, executing your offense to make sure you get the right shots, or not making foul shots, you put all those things together and right there at the end of the game, Missouri made a couple of big shots and that changed the outcome of the game.”

Late comeback gives No. 25 Missouri a 68-64 win at NC State (

RALEIGH — N.C. State had Missouri and another win, right up until it didn’t.

The Wolfpack controlled the game and the 25th-ranked Tigers for more than 36 minutes on Saturday night.

What the Wolfpack couldn’t do is close out Mizzou. Junior guard Jordan Clarkson wouldn’t let them.

Clarkson’s clutch scoring, 21 points in all, and junior guard Jabari Brown’s 3-pointer with 55.1 seconds left lifted Missouri to a 68-64 win over N.C. State at PNC Arena.

The loss snapped N.C. State’s seven-game winning streak. It was the first loss of the season for the Wolfpack (9-3) in a game it had controlled, and led by as many as 10 points in the second half.

Box Score




But not much time to wallow in this one as the Pack moves on to face a not too shabby UNCG squad on the road (Monday 12/30, 7pm, G’boro Coliseum, ESPN3) while hopefully learning a little something from the one that got away last night.

Then, in less than a week now, the ACC grind begins when State welcomes Pitt to Raleigh (1/4, noon) to kick off conference play, and then makes a quick turnaround for a road game to South Bend to face Notre Dame 3 days later (1/7, 9pm).

About Wufpacker

A 2nd generation alumnus and raised since birth to be irrationally dedicated to all things NC State. Class of '88 and '92.

13-14 Basketball

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    Last night, the youthful Pack falls at home to the #25 Mizzou Tigers out of the SEC. All things considered, that sentence doesn’t sound all that terri
    [See the full post at: The Morning After]


    This one hurts, for sure. Muzzle hit some wild shots during that 7 minute stretch, but not all of them were highlight worthy. We need to play better defense down the stretch. Fatigue should be a non factor with our bench going 9 deep. All in all, losses at home in games where you should have won, will dampen our NCAAT spirits.


    I am sure as the season moves along, with game experience, we will learn how to pull these games out, and not blow it in the end. But other players on the team will have to step it up for this to happen, in each and every game. No hit and miss. Gotta bring the A game every time.


    On the bright side (hard to find the morning after) this team DID withstand furious comebacks from Detroit & @Tennessee – though not top 25 caliber teams. I think Wuf pretty much nailed it: a tough, close loss to a top 25 team; I think the future is bright if they continue to come together as a team & tamp down some of the sloppy errors.


    Good article, WufPacker.

    After 12 hours to consider, it was probably a combination of several things.

    1. Vandy did not have his A game nor did Beejay. We did not get points from Vandy nor defense.
    2. TJ was superman during the first half. Then he was at least a Level B super hero. But, Haith finally found the Kryptonite and he got TIRED. Even though we have bench strength and endurance, he must NOT have to be our only game. At one time I looked at the Jumbotron and he had 15 our of our 27 and the half was almost over. He had 13 rebounds, but half or 4 of our TO’s. Vandy did little on the defensive or offensive end. We need points and rebounds.
    3. Cat did not get into any rhythm. He seemed frustrated and then got pushy on defense. Not saying the refs get an A+ for consistency, but he gambled a few times and lost. He did not put points on the board and he was only 2 X 6 from the FT and the ones at the end were critical. Chalk it up to being a freshman, but he did not pull his load.
    4. Rest of team was inconsistent. Washington & Lee had 10 & 12 pts. But Freeman and Tyler “were there” Tyler was not sharp, but the MO’s guarded Vandy differently and he was not allowed to Alley Op like at ECU. He did not throw away the ball but once….and that one was really off, so he probably did what Gott wanted him to do, but he has to score. 0 X 3 from the floor.

    As UGLY as they looked, Turner’s last 2 treys saved our behinds. Cat and the whole team should have hit more FT’s. In addition, this was one our lowest FG% for the year.

    We are young and still inconsistent. When Cat and Vandy are in foul trouble and Gott is experimenting with line-up’s some combo’s do not work.

    We need a more consistent effort and production from Cat and Vandy and fewer fouls.

    Fouls last night surprised me. They were 34. It did not seem that many. Their average is 37 FPG, so they were down a little. This crew is calling about 10% MORE fouls this year. They are not in the league with our favorites who are in the low 40’s. WAIT until we get a real whistle happy crew.

    Decided to go to Greensboro on Monday. Need some RED there. UNCG site takes you to ticketmaster. Seats are available.


    Hey! First time able to post in over a week in this new format..

    Shhweeet 😀


    Was I disappointed? Sure. Can I tick off a list of reasons for the loss? Yes. The real question is how the team responds. With a very young team I expected some off nights and maybe there were some here. I also think Missouri is a pretty decent team. My optimism as to what this team can be has not wavered.


    We let this one get away. Looking back we did it to ourselves in large part. We got little from Cat and Tyler, missed too man FTs, failed to get TJ enough touches down the stretch, and forgot how to rebound, just to name a few. Mizzou is a good team and if they are that good, we aren’t too shabby when we put our minds to it.


    Great takes on the ebb and flow of the game. Knowledgeable, one might say.

    Speaking of knowledgeable, someone found it necessary to point out that I attacked a few people’s intelligence, last night. No…I questioned their knowledge.

    Big diff, especially if one quotes out of context, and uses said quote to personalize a criticism of one’s own.

    Trust me. If I were to attack someone’s intelligence, you’d recognize it immediately.

    I try to post as if we were watching events at the same Sports Bar. My takes would be no different pint to pint, face to face.

    Now, you may enjoy my company, and I yours, or not. The difference is only in whether or not I’d care to buy you a beer, or you one for me. It works both ways. Just like opinions on refs 😉

    I truly apologize for placing a response in a new thread.


    Plan B pill this morning? Yes, please!!

    The key to me is getting off to a 2-0 start in league play. Not easy, but eminently doable.


    Who’d ya piss off, Dog?

    This game was revealing. It showed what role determination and passion play in the game’s outcome. The winning team had it, the losing team did not. Mettle.

    I don’t expect this very young team to have all the poise in the world, but I do expect an equal amount of grit as ECU, Central, and JUCO-laden Missouri. How long has that team been together?

    I commend Kyle Washington for the fire he brings onto the court. The rest of the team looked flatter than a double-mastectomy.


    This may be the rebuilding year we managed to put off with Howell, Brown, Leslie and Wood plus help from transfers in Gott’s first year and Painter.

    We did not do the little things, like keep Mizzou off the offensive glass in the second half that really hurt us down the stretch.

    Anya and Vandy are not guys, who will do well against smaller line-ups. They are not quick enough. Vandy will never be. Anya maybe, if he can get his weight down.

    I do not think we will make the NCAA Tournament this year, unless we pull of some huge upsets against the top 1/3rd of the ACC.

    We are rebuilding.


    We were 3 point favorites…why would fans not expect to win that game?

    Vegas odds are similar to stock prices. They are the “fair market value” if you will. Millions of people are involved in “pricing” the spread, including “smart money” which involves sophisticated companies who develop and utilize complex algorithms that predict game outcomes. Smart money places large bets and dictate the spread, just like hedge funds bet large money and move stock prices.

    Smart money predicted we win the game last night! It takes away all bias you may have as a fan. If you are unsure of whether you should expect to win, a close game or blowout, then by all means check Vegas odds. That way you can anchor your expectation to objectivity.

    Have a nice day.


    I also do not see us as a tourney team. At least not as it stands today. Going to have to play very well in conference to have a shot.


    I like this team and look forward to watching it develop. But I don’t see this team making the NCAA tournament.

    The defense, energy, and attitude is better than last season. But there just simply aren’t enough offensive threats, especially to run good zone offense.

    Maybe the coaching staff can coach them up in season to improve the offense, particularly the zone offense, but I am skeptical. We don’t have enough outside shooting. The team’s 3-point field goal percentage is currently 30.48%, which is 14th in the ACC and well below our team’s average in any season within the past decade. Aside from Turner, the rest of the rotation players collectively shoot just 25.6% on three pointers. Hopefully, Lacey and the Martins will help in this area next season, but it’s hard to see a major improvement this year.

    I hope I’m wrong, but it seems like a glaring weakness that will be hard to overcome against quality ACC opponents.


    Sticking in craw? … I think it SHOULD!
    Let’s not mistake Mizzou for Duke. This was not a game where we were over our heads and “kept up with the big boys.” We were favored by both Kenpom and Vegas. We were supposed to win this game! We were the better team for 90% of the game. How many games will we be favored in this year? We’ve got to win ALL of those games, and some more, to make the NCAAT.

    Low spots – point guard – Vandy and Beejay don’t create shots, that is the PG role. Neither Cat nor TL got the job done scoring or creating. Successful tournament teams have strong guard leadership. We’re going to see a lot of big, strong, talented guards. Gotta figure that out.
    High point – Kyle’s jumpers. What a great zone buster. 10 pts / 3 rb / 2 blk – I think he’s worked his way back into the starting line up in Nard’s slot. Heck of an athlete.

    Let’s not settle for less than high expectations. I like Gott’s comments after the game. Mizzou made plays at the end and we didn’t. Translated, we choked. And I hate it.

    But, as someone said earlier, it is still December and we are improving. But it’s going to be tough to get this one back in the ACC.


    Speaking of knowledgeable, someone found it necessary to point out that I attacked a few people’s intelligence, last night. No…I questioned their knowledge ‘

    Whatever want to call it, it is a jack ass thing to do. Just because you disagree with someone does not mean they know less than you despite how brilliant you seem to think you are.


    People “expecting” the Pack to start the conference 2-0? I guess they haven’t seen Pitt play yet.. similar to Missouri, only w/ DEPTH


    the bad news is state blew a game we needed and were in control. the good news is this yr state is not a finished product. washington will grow as well as barber in 20 games from now. i gotta think lewis will be better at some point as well. last yr, the pack was a finished product from the get go. not this year. we shall see.
    the really bad news is i dont think i have the temperment to stand college officiating anymore. not blaming the loss on them, but not happy.


    Rick…you sit at your end of the bar…I’ll sit on mine.



    Yup, you focus on the players and the game and not other posters and I will do the same.


    I agree with you Rick.

    I give it to you cow dog. You know more about football than I will ever know. Just don’t pretend to know every sport more than anyone else here. You may be just as knowledgable on every other sport just don’t act like pompous know it all on all sports.


    LOL…..You guys are gettin’ me tickled.
    Re: my statement in this entry that a win wasn’t expected, seems that maybe I should clarify myself there.
    I only meant that to mean a win wasn’t expected as being a given, and losing to a ranked team, even at home, shouldn’t be UNexpected necessarily all things considered.


    ^I’m tickled too, wuf… but not really.

    A whole page without a clever pun, double entendre, or anxiety alleviating alliteration? Did the cops raid everyone’s stash? I don’t recognize this place.


    Heh….if I tell ya that my Momz is downstairs right now playing with her balls, does that count for double entendre? (She’s dismantling the Xmas decor fwiw) 😀
    Apparently, allegories are all the rage ’round these parts these days, but I missed that trend before and had to come back for it.

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