At 10-5, Florida State currently sits at 5th place in the ACC with three games left to play. Today’s matchup with NC State gives the Seminoles an opportunity to move into a tie with Virginia Tech for 4th place before hosting the Hokies on Tuesday night at the Tucker Center. Standing in the way of that is a Wolfpack team that has gone 20-8 overall, 8-7 in the ACC, and looking to improve their NCAA resume with a big road win in Tallahassee. Florida State opened as a 7-point favorite, and KenPom projects the ’Noles by 6. The noon tip will be broadcast on ESPN2.
NC State is not far behind No. 24 FSU in the NET Rankings, coming in at No. 31. The Wolfpack are projected as a 10-seed in the NCAA Tournament by Bracket Matrix. Torin Dorn is leading the team in both scoring (13.9ppg) and rebounding (6.9rpg) in his senior year. Starting point guard Markell Johnson leads the team with 4.2 assists per game and adds 11.4ppg while shooting 41.8% from beyond the arc. Johnson dropped 25 points, going 6 of 9 from three, against Wake Forest in NC State’s last outing. Guard Braxton Beverly (10.3ppg) has made 66 threes on the year, shooting 38.4% from deep. For perspective, FSU’s leader in made three-pointers is PJ Savoy at 41.
With a 22.3 defensive turnover percentage, NC State is the 24th best team in the nation at forcing opponents to turn the ball over. This could present a problem as Florida State is 231st in the country with a turnover rate of 19.4%. The ’Noles will need to secure the ball and use their height advantage to control the glass. The Wolfpack are the 14th best offensive rebounding team in the nation but 220th on the defensive end. FSU will be facing one of the best three-point defenses in the nation as the Wolfpack have held opponents to just 30.1% shooting from deep. Getting the ball inside and exploiting NC State’s poor two-point defense (51.15; 215th) will be crucial for the Seminoles. (KenPom)
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