Guess my mobile uploads need some work, what a bad picture.
State is young. Friend of mine just said, "Yeah, but they've been young for 5 years". Sure seems true. The last veteran player we had it seems was Atsur. Not really true, but sure feels that way.
Carolina friend I went to the game with said, "Where did the NorthWestern coach come from"? It only took as long as the first back door cut layup to remember his Princeton roots. They run it well. State fans know that offense well, and you couldn't help but just a little bit feel the tug of missing those days of beautiful back door cuts with Marcus Melvin or Ilian Evtimov making a sweet bounce pass to Jules for an easy layup. We hated that offense. We loved that offense.
After initial lapses, NC State 2009 actually defended it pretty well. I won't write a book on this game, but some things did jump out at me.
- Javier Gonzalez is the heart and fire of this team. He isn't there yet, but he's getting better, and he won't back down from any challenge, and he's got the Heart. And man was he tired at the end of the game.
- If Tracy Smith was 2 inches taller, he would be amazing. He's got amazing moves, just needs and inch or two to help him finish. BUT, he gives fantastic effort.
- Scott Wood is a shooter. He looks like a shooter, he moves like a shooter, he spots up and pulls the trigger like a shooter. Everyone says he's a shooter. The only problem is I haven't actually seen him hit a shot. He will, he's going to be great, but I'd sure like for some of them to start falling soon. I think one thing Lowe needs to do is get him more shooting time in the RBC center. I couldn't help but wonder last night whether statistically overall state shoots worse at home from 3 now than when they practiced and played in Reynolds. No way to do a comparison like that because the talent is different, but you'd have to think more practice time in the RBC Center would help our home 3-pt shooting %.
- Julius Mays is driving me crazy. He is quick with the ball. The problem is, he only showed that quickness once all night. The rest of the time, against that 1-3-1 trap, he looked very tentative, like he is afraid to make a turnover. Get over it, start moving, start making quicker passes, even if a few of them are to the other team.
- All of the freshmen we've seen to date have talent. But they aren't yet ready to make plays. They make a great move, or have a great opportunity, and they just spazz out a little. It will come, but they are young. It is different with the Carolina and Duke freshment, who have been playing in all star games for years now. Our guys just aren't ready to play with the cameras on yet.
- UNC and Duke are going to kill us this year.