clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

#1 UNC vs Boston College

Where: Dean Smith Center, Chapel Hill, NC
When: Sunday, January 4th, 5:30 PM
TV: Fox Sports
Records: UNC 13-0, 0-0 ACC; BC 11-2, 0-0 ACC

UNC opens up defense of it's ACC crown.

The storyline you will hear over and over heading into this one is how Tyrese Rice put on a show during the first half of the game in Chestnut Hill last February.  And yes, it was quite impressive up until the point where the BC players went into the locker room acting like they won the game. After the intermission UNC reasserted it's dominance and surprisingly, Ty Lawson, fresh off his ankle injury did a great job of containing Rice in the 2nd half as the Heels outscored BC 50-26 to turn a 14 point halftime deficit into a ten point win.

I hardly expect Rice to come anywhere close to repeating that performance, mainly because this game is being played in Chapel Hill, but also because Ty Lawson is fully healthy and playing a fair amount of good defense this season.  Rice on the other hand is still a scoring PG but also has been distributing the basketball more this season involving others in the offense.  The Eagles biggest problem is after Rice, Joe Tripani, Corey Raji and Rakim Sanders there is not much in the way of real offensive threats.  If the Heels push the pace BC will have a difficult time keeping up given the dropoff in quality once you get past the starting five.

Since the talk all week concerning the Heels has been about the defense, there will be plenty of focus on how well the Heels play on that end of the floor.  Moving into conference play creates a discernible shift in the way the players approach the game because you move from playing non-conference opponents where winning and losing does not technically matter to games where wins and losses matter in the standings.  The level of competition also picks up a notch and regardless of the records, there are no easy marks in the ACC.  With that in mind, UNC will inevitably be evaluated on the way they play the game as much as the result should they win.  That is how it goes when you are at the top of the pile.  For my part I would love to see a thrashing along the lines of what the Heels did in Detroit or what the Heels did against BC last year in Chapel Hill.

UNC 96 BC 68