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FSU basketball: NC State preview

It's the men's basketball reunion, with Dave Cowens, Ron King, Hugh Durham and more than 50 other other Noles basketball alumni in attendance

Amber Searls-USA TODAY Sports

A week ago NC State was the most disappointing team in the ACC. A roster loaded with seven consensus top 100 recruits put them among the rare company of about a dozen other college basketball programs. Yet they were just 11-5 with losses to Wofford and Purdue, and no wins over a Pomeroy top 50 team. Then they beat Duke. It's amazing how fast a season can turn.

The Wolfpack (12-6, 3-2) lost a close game a few days ago against North Carolina. So now, to keep their momentum going, they need to go on the road and beat a struggling Florida State (9-8, 1-3) team.

NC State is led by guard Trevor Lacey, an Alabama transfer. The 6-4 junior is averaging 17.1 per game. He makes 44% of his 3s, and is stingy with the ball, turning it over on less than 15% of his possessions. Another SEC transfer - Ralston Turner from LSU - is a 3-point specialist (65% of his attempts are from beyond the arc), making 41% of his 3s on his way to 13.7 points per game. Cat Barber completes their talented 3-guard attack. The lighting quick 6-2 sophomore scores 11.1 per game and leads the team with 3.6 assists.

All told, this adds up to one of the better offenses FSU will face this season. They're not exceptional in any one category, but they're solid across the board. They can shoot. They rebound their own misses. They get to the line, and they're careful with the ball.

In the middle, BeeJay Anya is an intriguing player. He's not exactly the most svelte 6-9 center, but his extremely long arms and great timing allow him to have the 4th best block rate in the nation. NC State is 15th in the nation in blocks, and 30th in 2-pt% defense. But the knock against Mark Gottfried teams remains the same - they're soft on defense. He's coached one top 50 defense in his career, and this one is 111th.

Of course, they don't have the market cornered on bad defenses. Florida State is currently rated 140th, and is just the second Leonard Hamilton defense ever to be north of 100.

To turn the season around like NC State did against Duke, FSU needs to figure out how to get some stops.

The game tips at 1:30 and will be broadcast on Fox Sports Florida and ESPN3. NC State is a 1.5 point favorite. Pomeroy has NC State -3. Malik Beasley, FSU's 4* wing commit, will be in attendance.