Previewing N Carolina (20-6, 11-4)

The regular season's final weekend is highlighted by the best rivalry in college basketball as Duke and North Carolina meet in Cameron Indoor Stadium. Tip off is scheduled for 9:00 on the entire ESPN family of networks.


1/1 Duke (27-2, 14-1) vs. 15/16 North Carolina (20-6, 11-4) Durham, N.C. – Cameron Indoor Stadium
9 p.m., ESPN

Program Vitals
Conference: ACC
Nickname: Tar Heels
Colors: Pastel Blue & White
Head Coach: Roy Williams  (3rd year)
Career Record at North Carolina: 72-21 (490-122 overall)
Last Time: Duke 87, North Carolina 83

Projected Starters:
 4 Bobby Frasor (6-3, 195, Fr.) – 6.5 ppg, 4.6 apg
22 Wes Miller (5-11, 185, Jr.) – 7.2 ppg 44% 3pt
34 David Noel (6-6, 232, Sr.) – 12.9 ppg, 6.6 rpg
 3 Reyshawn Terry (6-8, 228, Jr.) – 14.4 ppg, 5.9 rpg
50 Tyler Hansbrough (6-9, 235, Fr.) – 18.7 ppg, 7.5 rpg

Key Reserves:
14 Danny Green (6-5, 202, Fr.) – 7.7 ppg, 4.0 rpg
41 Byron Sanders (6-9, 238, Sr.) – 2.7 ppg, 2.6 rpg
11 Quentin Thomas (6-3, 190, So.) – 2.3 ppg, 2.5 apg
 1 Marcus Ginyard (6-5, 200, Fr.) – 6.5 ppg, 2.8 rpg


Information courtesy of North Carolina Sports Information

Round II: Prior to the season many expect the Duke-North Carolina match ups to produce a pair of comfortable Blue Devil wins. That myth was quickly squashed in the first match up that saw the Tar Heels rally from as many as 17 down to take a five point lead, before falling by four to Duke, 87-83.

Duke was led by J.J. Redick's 35 point performance. Freshman Josh McRoberts added 17. The Blue Devils were out-rebounded by a huge 45-26 margin, but did force 21 UNC turnovers.

Both teams enter Saturday's regular season finale with high seeds in the NCAA Tournament secured, and while Duke may be favored by the odds-makers, it's the Tar Heels who have been the hotter team of late. Over the past three games North Carolina has dismantled NC State (by 24 in Raleigh), Maryland (by 24), and Virginia (by 45) – all part of a six game win streak. Against Duke the Tar Heels will be looking to win for the 10th time in their last 11 games overall.

Star Watch: North Carolina's Tyler Hansbrough has been named the ACC's Rookie of the Week a staggering nine times this season, just one shy of the ACC's all-time record of 10 selections by Kenny Anderson of Georgia Tech during the 1989-1990 season. Over the past three games, all easy Tar Heel victories, Hansbrough has averaged 17 points and nearly seven rebounds per night.

The Series: The Tar Heels are the only ACC opponent with a winning record against Duke all-time. North Carolina currently holds a 124-96 record against the Blue Devils. Duke leads the series 47-42 in games played in Durham. The Tar Heels have lost eight of their last nine games in Cameron Indoor Stadium since the 1996-97 season (defeating the Blue Devils in 2000-01). Duke leads the series, 38-30, in Cameron Indoor Stadium. Duke has won six of the last eight times in Chapel Hill, and 16 of the previous 19 meetings overall.

Since returning to Chapel Hill from Kansas, head coach Roy Williams has amassed a 1-4 record against the Blue Devils. Williams is just 2-7 overall versus Duke, including a loss in the 1991 National Championship game while at Kansas.

Giant Killers: Thought the Blue Devils will no doubt drop from the nation's top overall ranking on Monday thanks to the loss at Florida State, the Tar Heels will have a chance to do something on Saturday that they have done more often than any team in the nation – beat the nation's top ranked team.

North Carolina has more wins over No.-1 ranked teams in the Associated Press poll than any other school in the nation. Carolina is 6-10 against Duke when the Blue Devils are ranked No. 1 in the AP poll. Roy Williams is 0-1 in his career against Duke teams ranked No. 1, losing to Duke on February 5, 2004.

On the season North Carolina has played six teams ranked in the Associated Press poll this season, going 3-3 in those contests. UNC beat No. 10 Kentucky on Dec. 3, No. 13 NC State on Jan. 7 and No. 15 NC State on Feb. 22. Carolina lost to No. 12 Illinois on Nov. 29, to No. 20 Boston College on Jan. 25 and to No. 2 Duke on Feb. 7.

North Carolina is 5-15 in its last 20 road games against ranked teams (AP poll). The wins came at No. 14 NC State and No. 16 Wake Forest in 2003-04, at No. 19 Connecticut in 2004-05 and at No. 10 Kentucky and No. 15 NC State this season.

No Tar On Their Heels Defensively: UNC has held its opponents to under 34 percent shooting in each of the last four halves of play — 27.0 percent and 29.0 percent against Maryland and 31.2 percent and 33.3 percent against Virginia. For the season, Carolina has held its opponents to 41.1 percent shooting from the floor. The opponents have shot under 50.0 percent 21 times and under 40 percent on 10 occasions.

Who Needs Wine & Cheese?: Not this group, which has posted a better record on the road (6-1) than at home (5-3) in ACC play. The only other seasons UNC has had a better winning percentage on the road in ACC play than at home were 1959-60 (6-1 at home and 5-0 on the road) and 1954-55 (5-3 at home and 4-2 on the road).

Duke Notes:

- Saturday's contest with North Carolina marks the final game in Cameron Indoor Stadium for six Blue Devil seniors (Sean Dockery, Patrick Johnson, Lee Melchionni, Ross Perkins, J.J. Redick and Shelden Williams). Over the past four years, this group has led Duke to an 111-21 record, including a 57-2 mark at home. They are also 57-15 in ACC play, including an 8-1 mark in the conference tournament.

- The Blue Devils' 27 wins thus far in the regular season is tied for third all-time at Duke (the 1998 team also won 27 games in the regular season). Duke's 1986 and 1999 teams share the school record with 29 regular season victories. In 10 of the past 21 seasons the Blue Devils have registered at least 25 wins in the regular season.

- Duke is shooting an ACC-high 50.2 percent (813-of-1,620) from the field. The Blue Devils last shot over 50 percent for the year during the 1998-99 season. Josh McRoberts (61.6 pct.) and Shelden Williams (58.9 pct.) are each shooting over 58.0 percent from the field, while Sean Dockery (49.4 pct.), J.J. Redick (48.9 pct.) and DeMarcus Nelson (48.4 pct.) all are shooting over 48.0 percent from the field this season.

The Blue Devils are shooting an ACC-best 40.3 percent (224-of-556) from three-point range, while holding the opposition to an ACC-low 29.3 percent (108-of-368). On the year, J.J. Redick has more treys (110) than the Duke defense has allowed (108).

Duke also leads the ACC in free throw shooting at 76.5 percent (561-of-733) and has made more free throws (561) than its opponents have attempted (486). Duke has accomplished that feat eight times (1972, 1978, 1990, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1999 & 2000). The Blue Devils are 17-0 this season when making more free throws than an opponent has attempted.

- J.J. Redick (28.1 ppg.) and Shelden Williams (18.8 ppg.) rank one and two in the ACC in scoring (North Carolina's Tyler Hansbrough is third at 18.7 ppg.). No teammates have ever finished in the top two spots of the conference scoring race.

- Freshman Greg Paulus leads the ACC in assists per game (5.17). Only three freshmen — Jeff Jones (Virginia), Kenny Anderson (Georgia Tech) and Ed Cota (North Carolina) — have led the conference in assists per game. Paulus has 150 assists, the fifth most in a season by a Blue Devil freshman (Chris Duhon is immediately ahead with 163 assists).

- Josh McRoberts is averaging 10.4 points, 5.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 2.0 steals per game over the last five games. The Carmel, Ind., native is shooting 73.9 percent (17-of-23) from the field and 72.7 percent (16-of-22) from the foul line in that period.

- Shelden Williams collected ACC Player of the Week accolades on Feb. 27 after registering back-to-back double-doubles in wins over Georgia Tech and Temple. For the week, he averaged 24.5 points and 11.5 rebounds per game while shooting 64.3 percent (18-of-28) from the field.


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