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NC State vs Syracuse

ryebreadryebread Posts: 1,616PFN Referee
The theme for NC State this year has been to "get healthy so we can go on a run."  With fewer than 10 games left in the regular season and coming off of almost a week's rest, it feels like this is the time if it is going to happen.  The Wolfpack likely aren't going to be any more healthy than they are entering Tuesday night's game.

As of today, NC State is on the outside looking in of a NCAA tournament bid.  The Pack has played (and struggled against) a very light ACC schedule thus far (as VaWolf has detailed).  The only upside to that is that there are chances for resume enhancing wins left on the calendar.  To have any shot at getting in (barring some ACC tournament run), it feels like the Pack needs to get 2 or 3 out of 5 between Syracuse, two against Duke, FSU and UNC while not having another bad loss.  It's a tall order, and it starts Tuesday night.

When you play Syracuse under Boeheim, you know you are going to be facing a 2-3 zone defense.  In most years, it is a tall line up with lanky players, and they're only going about 7 deep.  Pace is normally plodding. Syrcause normally starts out slowly and improves through the year.  This year is no different in those aspects. 

The Orangemen lost some ugly early games to Oklahoma State, Penn State, Iowa, Georgetown and Virginia all by 10+ points.  At one point they were 8-7 (1-3) in the ACC.  Since then, they've been on a tear winning 7 out of their last 9 games.  They're seemingly a team building some momentum.

Syracuse has 6 players that have played in all of their games, and no one beyond that has gotten more than 6 minutes.  They are led by the trio of freshman PG Joseph Girard, junior SF Elijah Hughes and sophomore SG Buddy Boeheim.  The three have averaged over 36 minutes per game over the Cuse's last five games. Syrcause is also the nation's 10th tallest team.

What's different about Syracuse this year is that they can score. That used to be the case when they were in the Big East and first joined the ACC, but it's been dormant a while.  This year Syracuse sports the 21rst ranked offense nationally in efficiency, and are fairly solid in almost every category.  If something stands out, it is that the Orange don't turn the ball over, and assist on an unusually high percentage of their shots.  Syracuse is working the ball around, getting good shots, and not turning it over.

NC State has played well against Syracuse in recent years, but those were normally against offensively challenged team.  This feels like a "trap" game stylistically for the Pack.  The Pack's zone offense has looked pretty ugly, and "open" looks on offense will be from three.  It makes me worried when the game plan is to win with the 3 ball.  On defense, does the Pack have the discipline to play solid defense against a team with good guards without fouling?

While the Pack has shown little defensive pressure in most ACC games this year, it might be time to break out the press.  Syracuse only goes 6 deep, so slowing it down and letting them set up their zone plays into what they want.  The Pack will probably be better off getting out on the break and getting some easy baskets.  Some pressure might slow the Syracuse offense down some.

KenPom likes the Cuse by 5 and gives Syracuse a 65% chance of winning.  
Poll time
  1. Win walks out of the non-air conditioned Carrier Dome with a win?20 votes
    1. NC State Wolfpack
    2. Syracuse Orange
  2. Will the Pack's core players all be able to play? (MJ, Bryce, DD, DJ, Beverley, Bates, Hellems)20 votes
    1. Yes
    2. No


  • KingHippo_fka_BJD95KingHippo_fka_BJD95 Posts: 3,315PFN Referee
    Hoping for the best, fearing the worst.
  • ryebreadryebread Posts: 1,616PFN Referee
    BJD: You and me both. Normally this match up is favorable for KK led squads.  This year it feels like the tables are turned, and it is on the road.  

    It's not excuse mongering, but the optics for shooters are also a bit different when playing in the Dome.  When you go on the road and face the 2-3, then the shots are going to be on the perimeter.  If the building makes things different for shooters, it is just that twinge of difficulty harder.
  • KingHippo_fka_BJD95KingHippo_fka_BJD95 Posts: 3,315PFN Referee
    To win, we MUST be able to use cuts and precise passing to create some mid-range jumpers for Bryce.  Or to get Markell to the rim.

    Settling for threes = near-certain loss.
  • KingHippo_fka_BJD95KingHippo_fka_BJD95 Posts: 3,315PFN Referee
    But if we had wins at UVA and SillyCuse - I'd start to find us interesting again.

    Still think we'd need one against Duke.
  • ryebreadryebread Posts: 1,616PFN Referee
    BJD: I agree. 

    We have to work the space between the front two defenders and the back three.  We have the perfect weapon in Bryce to flash in there, but the entry pass needs to be quick and crisp.  We have to be okay with him having 8-10 of those 15 foot jumpers, and the rest of the gang needs to be coming to crash the boards when he shoots (because otherwise he is trying to rebound 1 on 3).

    Settling for the "open" 3 will be a loss.  Our tendency though is to be all too willing to do that.  I'd make a rule that any half court set 3 pointer has to be on a possession where we've brought it through CJ in the middle.

    Regarding the larger stakes, if we win tomorrow night, then I think we are likely in with 2 out of 4 against UNC, FSU and the two Duke games.  That's a tall order though.  We first need that tomorrow night game.  It starts there.  We have to go on the road and have a W against another ACC team trying to make a late push to play their way in.  They will be equally motivated, so expect the Orange's best effort.
  • TexpackTexpack Posts: 2,101
    Just win this one and sweep Duke and we should get in. 😉
  • KingHippo_fka_BJD95KingHippo_fka_BJD95 Posts: 3,315PFN Referee
    I agree, Rye.  One step at a time.  Fortunately, the way they defend is so unique that you can't help but focus on the immediate task ahead.  Good to have the weekend off first, too.
  • Vawolf82Vawolf82 Posts: 457PFN Referee
    edited February 10
    A win against UNC likely won't be worth anything beyond the joy of beating them.
  • 44rules44rules Posts: 376
    That's joy enough, VA.
  • KingHippo_fka_BJD95KingHippo_fka_BJD95 Posts: 3,315PFN Referee
    "2 of 4" means 1 against Duke/FSU PLUS that "Q2 win" in the Hole.

    2 Q1 wins would be even better for the resume (but worse spiritually)
  • KingHippo_fka_BJD95KingHippo_fka_BJD95 Posts: 3,315PFN Referee
    I mean we could keep those jackinapes out of the NIT!
  • SamIamSamIam Posts: 455
    We couldn't beat UNC at home when they had one player scoring and were without Anthony.  Friends...Charlie Brown will not kick the football, not gonna happen.  Lucy pulls it away every time.
  • WulfpackWulfpack Posts: 1,870
    I mean we could keep those jackinapes out of the NIT!
    UNC is no where close to being NIT material. In the past few hears, the NIT has only taken two or three ACC teams. 
  • KingHippo_fka_BJD95KingHippo_fka_BJD95 Posts: 3,315PFN Referee
    I don't believe the NCAAT committee will even look at them...but if they are .500 overall, NIT will.
  • ryebreadryebread Posts: 1,616PFN Referee
    "2 of 4" means 1 against Duke/FSU PLUS that "Q2 win" in the Hole.

    2 Q1 wins would be even better for the resume (but worse spiritually)
    That's what I think, but you've got to start with Syracuse first.  Tomorrow night is must win.

    Sam: I agree.  We have less of a chance of beating UNC at UNC than we do of beating Duke at home.  We have historically gotten the most neutral whistle against Duke at home (when compared to Duke on the road, UNC home/away).

    Losing to UNC at home minus Anthony will likely go down as our most haunting loss of the year. Yes, the GT losses were "worse" on paper, but the UNC win would have likely helped us more -- both in our resume and spiritually.

  • WulfpackWulfpack Posts: 1,870
    I don't believe the NCAAT committee will even look at them...but if they are .500 overall, NIT will.
    They are currently in 13th place. Right now only three ACC teams are projected to get a bid to the Tournament. So NIT would take UVa, Cuse, State. Even if they get to .500 (which they won’t at 10-13), they still won’t be close. 
  • KingHippo_fka_BJD95KingHippo_fka_BJD95 Posts: 3,315PFN Referee
    Ol' Roy having his FIRST LOSING SEASON IN EVAR would warm my cold, black heart.
  • WolfWiz11WolfWiz11 Posts: 366
    ryebread said:

    Losing to UNC at home minus Anthony will likely go down as our most haunting loss of the year. Yes, the GT losses were "worse" on paper, but the UNC win would have likely helped us more -- both in our resume and spiritually.

    It's one of those moments in life that you never forget. It's like you buy two lottery tickets for you and your buddy and you give him the one that ends up winning. Or missing your right turn and going thru the intersection and you get T-boned by some idiot. The what-ifs will kill you. 
  • As phase 1 of our punishment, the NCAA will put UNC in the first 4 and leave us home. Just kidding of course.....I think. 
  • KingHippo_fka_BJD95KingHippo_fka_BJD95 Posts: 3,315PFN Referee
    Can't decide whether to go back to watching tonight.  The U*NC fixture scars are for real, y'all.
  • freshmanin83freshmanin83 Posts: 1,387PFN Referee
    edited February 12
    Markell late for practice will not start.
  • freshmanin83freshmanin83 Posts: 1,387PFN Referee
    Threes not falling early.
  • oldwolfoldwolf Posts: 115
    2 things - why does espn like that split screen so much and why are they just talking about Syracuse? 🤬
  • freshmanin83freshmanin83 Posts: 1,387PFN Referee
    Pack pushing the pace.
  • freshmanin83freshmanin83 Posts: 1,387PFN Referee
    Markell threads the needle.
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