- UNC is back to its old rebounding ways. Notre Dame out-rebounded UNC 40-35, only the second time this season UNC has lost the rebounding battle. (The first time was against Michigan State). One of the questions going into the GT game was whether or not UNC would be able to crash the boards as per usual. The answer is a resounding yes. GT got out-rebounded 46-25, tied for the fourth biggest victory on the boards this year for the Heels. They rebounded half of their misses on offense—19 offensive rebounds to 19 defensive rebounds for them!
- UNC can definitely win on poor shooting nights. In shooting 42.4% from the floor against the Yellow Jackets, UNC posted its sixth-worst shooting performance of the season. The five performances worse than this night include all four of UNC’s losses so far this season, as well as the Wake Forest game. But the Heels won in spite of that, in a game that was never a one-possession game in the second half. The rebounding helped with that, but the Heels also got to the line early and often, going 19-24 (9-10 from Joel Berry II!). On a night when players like Berry went 3-17 from the floor, the Heels needed every one of those points from the charity stripe.
- Sterling Manley has a short memory. After the Notre Dame game, it seemed like Manley’s role was set to grow. (Or maybe that was just me?) Instead, his five minutes played against Clemson were a career-low and he only contributed 3 points, 1 rebound, and 2 personal fouls. As a young freshman who’s still feeling out his game at this level, his response in the game immediately after was something to watch for. Well, he led the bench in minutes with 12, made all four of his field goal attempts, and added 3 rebounds, with no turnovers! He might not make a start this year, but he can be extremely good at making the most out of his minutes off of the bench.
Crashing the boards, overcoming poor shooting, and a Manley bounce-back.