Previewing North Carolina

Marcus Paige and the Tar Heels will be looking to knock off the Wolfpack tonight in PNC Arena. Here is a quick preview of the Tar Heels.

  • ROSTER
  • SCHEDULE
  • STATS

    PROJECTED STARTERS
    G 05 Marcus Paige (13.3 ppg, 2.2 rpg)
    G 13 J.P. Tokoto (9.2 ppg, 5.2 rpg)
    F 44 Justin Jackson (9.5 ppg, 3.3 rpg)
    F 11 Brice Johnson (11.3 ppg, 7.3 rpg)
    C 03 Kennedy Meeks (12.8 ppg, 8.6 rpg)

    STAR WATCH
    Marcus Paige - The Preseason ACC Player of the Year, Paige hasn't had the season most has expected, but he just hit a game-winner against Louisville is a dangerous threat from the perimeter.

    He is currently leading the team in scoring but is shooting just 36.6% from the field.


    North Carolina Game Notes

    AT A GLANCE
    No. 15/16 North Carolina (124, 21 ACC) and North Carolina State (125, 31) will meet for the 227th time on Wednesday night when they play in the PNC Arena in Raleigh. The Tar Heels are aiming for their seventh win in their last eight games, and the Wolfpack is coming off an 87-75 home win over Duke on Sunday.

  • Tipoff is set for just after 7 p.m., and Bob Wischusen (play-by-play) and LaPhonso Ellis (analyst) will have the call for ESPN2’s national television audience.

    COMING UP...
    After the North Carolina State game, Carolina will host Virginia Tech on Sunday, then visit Wake Forest on Wednesday Jan. 21 and host Florida State and Syracuse in a three-day span on Jan. 24 and 26, respectively.

  • Every Tar Heel game in the month of January will be televised nationally on one of the ESPN family of networks (ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU).

    A CAROLINA WIN WOULD...
    Improve Carolina to 134 this season and 31 in ACC play...Give the Tar Heels their seventh victory in the last eight games...Improve the Tar Heels to 151-76 all-time against North Carolina State, including four wins in a row, 17 in the last 18 meetings and 23 of the last 25...Give Roy Williams his 737th career victory (ranking 17th all time) and his 1,011th combined win as a college coach (head and assistant)...Improve Williams to 28-2 against NCSU, including 23-2 at Carolina.

    A CAROLINA LOSS WOULD...
    Drop the Tar Heels to 12-5, 2-2 ACC...Improve the Wolfpack to 3-27 against Roy Williams as a head coach, including 3-22 as the Carolina coach...Mark UNC’s second loss in its last three games.

    TAR HEEL TRENDS
    North Carolina is in its 105th season as a varsity basketball program and is third in NCAA history in wins with 2,126 (trailing Kentucky and Kansas).

  • Carolina has played back-to-back one-point games (losing to Notre Dame by a point and beating Louisville by one). This is the first time UNC has played consecutive one-point games since the 1981 ACC Tournament. Notre Dame beat UNC, 71-70, on January 5th. In 1981, the Tar Heels beat Wake Forest, 58-57, in the semifinals and Maryland, 61-60, in the ACC championship game (March 67, 1981, in Landover, Md., and the Capital Center).

  • The Louisville win on Saturday was Carolina’s first one-point win since beating N.C. State, 85-84, in Raleigh on Feb. 26, 2014.

    Marcus Paige hit the game-winning shot vs. Louisville with 8.5 seconds today. Last year in Raleigh, he beat the Wolfpack with a shot with 0.9 seconds to play in overtime.

  • Kennedy Meeks is 11 for 12 from the free throw line in the last two games.

  • J.P. Tokoto leads the Tar Heels in assists this season. He had five assists and zero turnovers vs. Louisville. It was the 10th time this year he has led UNC in assists, the fifth time this year he had five or more assists and the first time since the win over UCLA on Nov. 27th that he did not have a turnover. Tokoto also leads UNC in steals with 20.

  • The Tar Heels have held 13 of their first 16 opponents under 40 percent field goal shooting.

  • Carolina leads the ACC in offensive rebounding percentage at .449 (ranking first nationally) but is 14th of 15 ACC teams in defensive rebounding percentage at .679 (213th nationally).

  • Sophomore Kennedy Meeks had five double-digit rebounding games as a freshman but has eight this season. He leads the team with 8.8 rebounds per game and 22 blocked shots and is second in scoring at 12.7 ppg. He is fifth in the ACC in rebounding, fifth in field goal percentage, fifth in offensive rebounding and is eighth in blocked shots.

  • Meeks is tied with Louisville’s Montrezl Harrell for the ACC lead with six double-doubles this season (after Meeks had two all of last year).

  • The win over Louisville was the 736th of Roy Williams’s head coaching career. He is in 17th place in NCAA career coaching victories. John Chaney is 16th with 741.

  • Freshman Justin Jackson has started every game this season, making him the only Tar Heel other than Marcus Paige to do so.

  • Isaiah Hicks has been Carolina’s defensive player of the game a team-high six times this season. The award is determined when the UNC coaches grade film after the game.

  • UNC has scored 100 or more points 49 times in Williams’ 12 seasons as head coach. The Tar Heels are 481 in those games.

  • Carolina has won each of its last six overtime games and nine of its last 11. The Tar Heels are 59-51 overall in overtime games, including 97 under Roy Williams.

  • Roy Williams has 147 career wins in ACC regular season and ACC Tournament games, ranking sixth in conference history (Bobby Cremins of Georgia Tech is fifth with 149). Williams’ 318 overall wins as an ACC coach are seventh in league history (Terry Holland of Virginia is sixth with 326).

    ON THE ROAD IN ACC PLAY
    Roy Williams’ Tar Tar Heel teams have been one of the nation’s top road teams over the years.

  • The Tar Heels are 10 on the road in the ACC this season after their win at Clemson.

  • Williams’ ACC road winning percentage of .649 is second-best in ACC history behind Vic Bubas of Duke (.667 from 196069). Frank McGuire of UNC and South Carolina is third at .618.

  • Williams’s teams are 59-32 on the road in ACC play in 12 seasons, including a 5-4 mark in 201314 (for UNC’s eighth above.500 road record in 11 years under Williams).

  • UNC has 3-7 winning road records in 6-1 ACC seasons.

  • Under Williams, UNC has gone 6-2 on the road in the ACC in 2004-05, 7-1 in 2005-06, 8-0 in 2007-08, 6-2 in 2008-09, 6-2 in 2010-11, 7-1 in 2011-12, 5-4 in 2012-13 and 5-4 in 2013-14.

    PREVIEWING THE WOLFPACK
    North Carolina State is coming off its biggest win of the season so far, an 87-75 win over second-ranked Duke. In the process, the Wolfpack shot 55.0 percent from the floor, including 58.1 percent in the second half, while holding Duke to 34.3 percent in the second half and 36.9 percent overall. NCSU hit 10-of-16 three-pointers as a team while holding Duke to 7-of-27 (25.9 percent).

  • The Wolfpack is 3-1 in ACC play with home wins against Wake Forest, Pitt and Duke and a road loss at Virginia.

    THE SERIES VS. NCSU
    The Tar Heels lead the all-time series with North Carolina State, 150-76, and have won three in a row against NCSU.

  • Last year, Carolina beat the Wolfpack in both Chapel Hill and Raleigh. The teams split a pair of meetings in 2012-13 with each squad winning at home.

  • Carolina has won 16 of the last 17, 22 of the last 24 and 39 of its last 48 games against NC State.

  • Carolina is 59-45 alltime against NC State in Raleigh, including an 11-4 mark in PNC Arena (formerly known as the Raleigh Entertainment and Sports Arena and the RBC Center).

  • Carolina has won 14 of its last 18 games against the Wolfpack in Raleigh, losing in 2013, 2007, 2003 and 2002 since 1996.

  • Roy Williams is 27-2 as a head coach against North Carolina State, including a 5-0 record at Kansas and a 22-2 mark at Carolina. Under Williams, UNC swept the season series from the Wolfpack in 2003-04, 2004-05, 2005-06, 2007-08, 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2013-14 took two of three meetings in 2006-07 (splitting in the regular season and beating the Wolfpack in the ACC Tournament title game).

  • UNC had a 13game winning streak over NCSU that ended with a loss in Raleigh on Jan. 26, 2013, was its longest in the series and its longest in the ACC era against a Big Four opponent. The Tar Heels had a 12-game streak against Wake Forest from 1982-87.


    UNC athletics contributed to this report.


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