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Tale of the Tape: UNC vs NC State

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Heels vs Wolfpack.

North Carolina NC State
Record 12-4 12-5
ACC Record 2-1 3-1
KenPom Rank 9th 47th
Points per game 79.6 64.8
Adj. Off. Efficiency(Rank) 113.1(14th) 110.8(26th)
Ad. Def. Efficiency(Rank) 90.5(17th) 97.4(101st)
Tempo(Rank) 70.2(17th) 66.5(128th)
Offensive eFG% 48.9% 52.2%
Defensive eFG% 41.5% 43.4%
Field Goal % 45.2% 46.4%
3P FG% 31.0% 38.1%
FT% 70.3% 67.3%
Offensive Reb Rate 44.9% 33.4%
Defensive Reb Rate 67.9% 71.3%
TO Rate 18.1% 17.4%
FT Rate 38.2% 42.4%

There are two things to about NC State's numbers. The first is they pretty much line up with a team that is essentially above average. NC State is a decent team that has some very good moments but also some suspect ones which make the numbers a bit even keel. The Wolfpack is 47th in KenPom and have numbers that sit above the national average for the most part.

The other thing is it might not matter because it certainly didn't matter on Sunday versus Duke. NC State played well above the numbers against Duke, particularly on the defensive end. The Wolfpack held a Blue Devil team which enter the game on Sunday leading the nation in offensive efficiency to an OE of 107.2. On the flip side, NC State posted an OE of 124.2 against a team that had been good on the defensive end.

The point here is conference play has really been playing havoc with the numbers. That's the nature of conference play, especially in the ACC. The emotional element of these games impact the games in a way the numbers can't account for. UNC vs NC State could be a similar situation with the rivalry trumping the numbers.

That being said, this sets up as another case where UNC's defense, which has struggled a bit in the past two games, will yet again be tested. NC State has three point shooters in Trevor Lacey and Ralston Turner. NCSU is hitting 38.1% of its threes with Lacey at 46.3% and Turner at 41.7%. In some respect this could be a repeat of the Notre Dame game with a quick point guard able to penetrate the lane and create open looks.

The Wolfpack are 99th in offensive rebounding rate a full 11% less than UNC's nation leading 44.9% however NCSU is better on the defensive glass. UNC's DRB% continues to trend in the right direction after a poor showing on that end during the non-conference slate. UNC has not permitted a team to rebound better than 30% on the offensive glass in the last four games and has held six of the last seven opponents under 30% with UAB being the one exception. Continuing that trend is crucial for UNC to have success going forward.