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UNC 97 Rutgers 75

Another action packed game which saw UNC run up another double digit lead and cruise home.

The big news in this game was the return of Marcus Ginyard who was visibly rusty(as expected) and a bit deficient in the conditioning department(also expected) as evidenced by an airballed free throw in the 2nd half.  Ginyard also made some good plays in his first action since last season's Final Four.  As he gets back to form it only helps UNC's depth and defense.

In other news, the combination of Ty Lawson and Tyler Hansbrough is now the ultimate power in the universe and the Heels in general played a very good game coming off the eight day layoff which included time at home for the holidays.  Hansbrough put in another day at the office with 26 points and 10 rebounds which lifted the Heels to a 37-25 advantage on the boards. Ty Lawson continues to be the straw that stirs the drink with a mix of jumpers and drives to the basket that threaten the laws of physics in some cases.  Lawson also played mistake free basketball to go along with six assists which is something pretty much no other point guard in the country is probably doing as consistently as Lawson is.

With this team the questions about the defense still crop up.  Rutgers got some open looks and managed a 47% shooting clip.  Roy attributes some of that to gambles being made on defense leading to easy baskets.  The full court press seems to be giving up some baskets as well.  On the flip side of that equation Rutgers had 18 turnovers so the way the Heels were playing defense was not a complete loss.  According to the players, Roy is still preaching defense and Lawson even used the word "slacking" when referring to how Roy referenced their defensive effort.  There may be some truth to that but I am waiting to see if the effort on either end has something to do with this stretch of cupcakes games.  Roy had been adamant for two seasons now that the 2005 team was a decent team defensively for most of the year and became a great defensive team by the NCAA Tournament giving them the necessary edge to win the title.  I imagine that is the general hope for this team though I would argue they are not in bad shape defensively just in need of some adjustments to give them an extra edge.