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Inside the box score: UNC 96, FSU 83

FSU’s 12-game winning streak was snapped

NCAA Basketball: Florida State at North Carolina Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
  1. Jonathan Isaac, who sat down with TN’s Andrew Miller after the game, played his third straight excellent game in ACC play. UNC, for the most part, controlled the boards, but that certainly can’t be pinned on Isaac. He pulled down a career best 11 defensive rebounds, and has now grabbed 23.5% of the available defensive boards when he’s on the floor. The DR% record at FSU is 23.8% (Alexander Johnson in 2006, with advanced data becoming available in 2002). In ACC play, he’s been even better, grabbing 29.3% of the available boards, which is No. 1 in the conference.
  2. FSU made just 12-26 FTs, becoming the 44th team this season to attempt at least 25, and make less than half. West Virginia is the other top 10 team to do this. Seton Hall has somehow managed to do it twice already (and they won both), and Northwestern State has done it three times (winning all three). Which brings up an interesting point: The rate at which you shoot free throws is far more important that your FT%. While FT% varies widely from game to game, a team’s ability to get to the line is an identifiable skill. The benefits are obvious: points and foul trouble. While fans understandably obsess about every missed 1-and-1 and every late-game brick from the line, what is often overlooked is the effect of the tremendous pressure that constantly attacking downhill puts on the opponent. Florida State, for the record, leads the ACC in free throw rate.
  3. Perusing my social media mentions from angry people on the internet I see that quite a few fans had takes regarding FSU’s defensive rebounding. But I received zero comments about a far more alarming stat, which was Florida State’s inability to clean up its own misses. FSU only grabbed 20% of their own missed shots, which was easily their worst game of the season. North Carolina was completely dominant on their own defensive glass.
  4. For just the fourth time in the past four years, North Carolina failed to block a single shot. FSU has had fewer than 7% of their 2s blocked this year, which is 39th nationally (351 D1 teams).
  5. The ‘Noles lost 96-83 in an 85 possession game. The 85 possessions eclipsed the Iona game (83 possessions) as FSU’s most uptempo game of the season. UNC was the 2nd ACC team to score at least a point per possession vs FSU, and their defense held FSU below a point per possession for the first time in the past 10 games (George Washington).