Howell: "It's All About Effort"

RALEIGH, N.C. -- NC State senior forward Richard Howell met with the media to discuss Saturday's game with North Carolina.

Richard Howell

Opening Statement:
We're not drawing up anything special. We're just going to come out and we're going to play hard. They're coming off a nice couple of wins. They're rolling now, so we just have to come out and counter that.

Henson and Zeller have bothered you guys the last couple of years:
Length bothers you. Whenever you go against various guys who's 6'11, got seven-foot wing span, it definitely bothers you in the paint. It's definitely a relief they are gone. We definitely can take advantage of that.

Are you confident now after facing them early in your career?
I feel like every year I've been here, the more that we play them the more confidence we get. It's really a big game. It's crazy. People look at this and Duke, North Carolina and State as championship games, but it's a regular ACC game.

Confidence definitely picks up over time.

Can you carry over from the game last year in the ACC Tournament?
We definitely feel like they got away with one. There's a lot of calls that could've went either way. It is how is is. We just have to block that out of our head and get the motivation to win the game from the start.

Talk about the difference in playing at home versus on the road:
It's a huge difference. It's another team when you got the crowd behind you, especially in the ACC with the type of fans that we have and how loud they get and how much they're into it.

I feel like it's another dimension that the opposing team has to go against. But it's even better when you go on the road and win. That's what we need to start doing.

Do you see this as being exciting and a fun game to play in?
It's definitely going to be a track meet. I saw the game yesterday. Even on made baskets they were getting up and down the floor. It's definitely going to be an up-and-down game.

Great atmosphere versus Duke... do you think Saturday will be similar?
I definitely do. Anytime Carolina, Duke or whatever come into PNC Arena this year everyone's been ready to play. That's how we've got to come out. If we don't, it's definitely going to be a long game. We've got to come out with the same firepower.

Do you feel like there is a mental block with Carolina?
No, I don't.

Talk about the defensive issues from the other night.
I think it's all about effort. It's not about the guy that beats you is quicker or better, it's all about effort. How bad to you want to stop the other guy.

We had a meeting today and we talked about it. Hopefully things like that won't happen again.

They are a finesse, athletic team... do you look forward to a matchup like that?
Definitely. I feel like every game is going to be a dog fight in the paint. We're going to take advantage of it.

I'm not sure if you caught Dexter Strickland's comments at the beginning of the year.
Definitely caught it. Best of luck to him.

He said you guys were the least of their worries.
He can talk. If that's what they want to do, that's their game and how they want to approach it, that's fine. We'll go out and we're going to hoop.


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