Here is how the Tar Heels match up statistically vs Davidson.
|Points per game||78.5||75.1|
|Points per possession||1.08||1.06|
|Field Goal %||46.8%||42.9%|
|Offensive Reb Rate||36.7%||29.2%|
|Defensive Reb Rate||67.9%||66.7%|
|KenPom win probability||UNC 95%|
Here is the early leader for worst stat combination of the season so far. UNC is 26th in the nation in free throw rate at 52.7% that means the Tar Heels go to the line...a lot. After all with the new rules and UNC being aggressive the offense is getting what it wants which is shots or getting fouled. Unfortunately UNC is 345th in free throw shooting and is now below 60% as a team. That makes for too many empty possessions. Fouls on UNC players are like turnovers.
The frustrating aspect of this stat is the free throw line could be a great path to putting points on the board for a team that might have issues hitting shots from the floor. This is certainly true of James Michael McAdoo who has trouble finish around the rim but is capable of drawing fouls because of his quickness.
One other odd aspect of the free throw shooting is North Carolina is 11% worse at home than they are on the road. UNC has shot 55% from the line in the Dean Dome but in four games away from the Smith Center they are at 66%. Conventional wisdom says those numbers should be reversed. For the record, UNC has lost three games by ten points and missed 56 free throws in those contests.
Looking at Davidson, the Wildcats rate out poorly across the board. This is clearly a rare down season for Davidson which usually dominates the Southern Conference and is a mid-major no one really wants to play. Davidson struggles on the defensive end and up until this game is only making 28% of their threes. They is mostly carried by one player, Tyler Kalinoski, who is 13-32 so far this season.
Davidson does do a great job of taking care of the basketball giving up only 14.2% of possessions via turnover. That puts a greater premium on controlling the defensive glass since forcing turnovers could be difficult.
Random fact: UNC is 0-2 at home when I am not at the game so feel free to blame me for Belmont and Texas.