North Carolina State Basketball Predictions
Overall: 15-16 (11-5 H, 2-9 A, 2-2 N)
ACC: 5-11 (4-4 H, 1-7 A)
Conference Tournament: 0-1, lost in first round
The Wolfpack did not have much of the success that its head coach/alum Sidney Lowe had as a player, winning just 31 percent of its ACC games and 52 percent of all games during Lowe’s five-year tenure. He resigned at the end of the campaign, which saw N.C. State started 3-0 but finished 4-12 down the stretch after a five-game win streak. With an established head coach in place for 2011-12 and a decent return group, the Wolfpack at least should be a contender for first-division status this year.
Other Returning Players
Thomas de Thaey
Mark Gottfried, first year
Two of the top four scorers are gone from last year are gone, which makes for some significant holes to fill. Tracy Smith played in just 21 games but he was the team’s leading scorer (14 ppg) and No. 3 rebounder (5.7 pg). Ryan Harrow was fourth in scoring (9 ppg) and was second on the team in assists (3.3 pg). Javier Gonzalez averaged 5.5 ppg but was third in assists (2.3 pg) and was second in 3-pointers made (23) and attempted (79).
|Date||Opponent / Event|
|11/5/2011||vs. Red-White Scrimmage ^|
|11/7/2011||vs. Flagler (Exh.) – Canned Food Drive ^|
|11/11/2011||vs. UNC Asheville|
|11/13/2011||vs. Morehead State|
|12/11/2011||vs. North Carolina Central|
|12/20/2011||at St. Bonaventure|
|12/31/2011||vs. Western Carolina|
|1/4/2012||vs. Delaware State|
|1/8/2012||vs. Maryland *|
|1/11/2012||vs. Georgia Tech *|
|1/14/2012||at Wake Forest *|
|1/19/2012||vs. Boston College *|
|1/22/2012||at Miami *|
|1/26/2012||at North Carolina *|
|1/28/2012||vs. Virginia *|
|2/1/2012||at Boston College *|
|2/4/2012||vs. Wake Forest *|
|2/9/2012||at Georgia Tech *|
|2/16/2012||at Duke *|
|2/18/2012||vs. Florida State *|
|2/21/2012||vs. North Carolina *|
|2/25/2012||at Clemson *|
|2/29/2012||vs. Miami *|
|3/4/2012||at Virginia Tech *|
|3/11/2012||ACC Tournament Championship|
Mark Gottfried, who had a successful run at Alabama (210 wins in 11 years), was hired as the new Wolfpack head coach with the same charge he had in Tuscaloosa – rebuild a program with a rich history of success in one of the nation’s toughest conferences. There are some questions out of the program that finished 10th in the ACC last year, but there is a modest-sized returning group with not many key losses in that Gottfried should have something to work with as he looks to get N.C. State back among the elite in the ACC and nationally.
There is a lack of experience in the backcourt, with just one starter and one key reserve returning. That means there will be plenty of competition for playing time among the less-experienced newcomers.
Sophomore Lorenzo Brown led the team in assists (116, 3.8 pg) and steals (40) while listing fourth in rebounding (3.7 pg) and fifth in scoring (9.3 ppg).
Senior C.J. Williams played in all 31 games, averaging just shy of 18 minutes per contest, and tallied 4.7 ppg and 2.4 rebounds per contest.
The frontline is likely to be the strength for the Wolfpack, as five key contributors from last year return giving the team some valuable experience and depth.
Sophomore C.J. Leslie is the top returner in this group, averaging 11 points (second on the team) and 7 rebounds per game (first) while leading the team in blocked shots (39) as a freshman.
Junior Scott Wood was third on the team in scoring (9.7 ppg), second in steals (28), third in assists (44) and led the team in the three 3-point categories (72 made, 172 attempts, 42 percent).
Junior Richard Howell, despite playing just 18 minutes per game, was the team’s No. 2 rebounder (6.5 pg) and shot 52 percent from the floor while posting 7.4 ppg.
Junior DeShawn Painter played 14 minutes per game and averaged 4.6 ppg but tied for second on the team with 17 blocked shots.
Junior Jordan Vandenberg averaged 1.6 ppg and 1.7 rpg in about 10 minutes per game over 23 contests, but tied for second on the team in blocks (17) and shot a team-best 65 percent from the floor.
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