Wolfpack Hopes to End Road Woes in Tallahassee

NC State (8-2) travels to Tallahassee to play FSU (12-2) for their second ACC game of the year. Game time is set for 4:00 and will be televised on your local Raycom station.. <P> Premium Subscribers can chat Live in the <a href=http://insiders1.ezboard.com/fnorthcarolinastatefrm17>StateFans.com Premium Chat Room</a> via the "Join Live Chat" Link.

Tallahassee-Leon County Civic Center

NC State (8-2) vs. FSU (12-2)
4:00 pm
Tallahassee, Florida
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Tallahassee-Leon County Civic Center

FSU Links

FSU Official Site

Tallahassee Democrat

FSU News (Student Newspaper)

FSU Scouting Report

FSU's Anthony Richardson
FSU Outlook for 2003-04: FSU returns eight of the Seminoles' top scorers from 2002-03. They also return 87% of its scoring output. The roster is loaded with a great deal of experience, as FSU has five seniors who have played in a combined 239 games.

Head Coach Leonard Hamilton: Leonard Hamilton (226-227) has over 30 years of coaching experience at the highest and most intense levels of basketball. Hamilton is in his second season with FSU and has apparently turned the corner with the Seminole program. Highlights from his first year at FSU, included an upset of #5 Duke and inking the #1 recruiting class in the nation.

Early Season: Florida State, is off to its best 14-game start to a season since winning 13 of its first 14 games to begin the 1988-89 season. After winning their first 10 games of the year to establish a school record for wins at the start of a season, the Seminoles enter Sunday's game against the Wolfpack with a 12-2 mark and victories in two of their last three games. The Seminoles were the first team in the nation to reach double figures in wins as they gained the 10th victory of the season Dec. 20 against Chicago State.

Probable Starting 5: F – #22 G Tim Pickett (Sr 6-4 207), 14.1 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 1.9 apg, 2.4 stp... F – #54 Anthony Richardson (Jr 6-7 189), 10.7 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 1.6 apg... F – #32 Alexander Johnson (FR 6-10 250), 8.8 ppg, 3.7 rpg... G – #23 Von Wafer (Fr 6-5 210), 8.4 ppg, 1.8 rpg... F – #1 Michael Joiner (Sr 6-7 238), 5.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg.

FSU's Top Gun: All-American and All-ACC candidate Tim Pickett has not been a disappointment for the Seminoles in their first 14 games. The senior guard leads FSU with 14.1 ppg and is third in rebounding with 3.2 board per game. Pickett's quickness shows in his eye popping stat of 34 steals for the season. Tim has turned his game up to another level as serious ACC plays begins. Pickett, who averaged 18.5 points, 4.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.5 steals as the Seminoles split two games last week, was named the Atlantic Coast Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Week by the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association.

Stingy Defense: Florida State enters Sunday's game against NC State ranked fourth in the ACC in scoring defense and is one of four conference teams which is allowing less than 60 points per game by its opponents. The Seminoles are surrendering 7.0 fewer points per game this season as compared to last season when they led the ACC and ranked seventh nationally in scoring defense.

FSU's Offense Sizzles: Florida State is shooting .540 (54-of-100) from the field in the last two games. The Seminoles shot .556 (30-of-54) from the field against Stetson and .522 (24-of-46) from the field against Florida. FSU enters Sunday's game against NC State ranked fourth in the ACC with a field goal shooting percentage of .478. The Seminoles have improved their shooting from the field by 4.6 percentage points as compared to last season

Fast Break Points

FSU's All-Time record is 883-655 (.585%)
Florida State is ranked 10th in the nation in 3-point field goal percentage with a .415 mark
A FSU victory over NC State would be the first at home for the Seminoles against the Wolfpack since Jan. 23, 1999 and break a four-game losing streak.
If FSU beats the Pack on Sunday, it will only be the second time since FSU's entry into the ACC that they would start 2-0.
Florida State has a nine-game losing streak going against the Wolfpack.
Breaking the Ranks: Florida State is ranked 28th in this week's ESPN/USA Today coaches' poll and 31st in this week's Associated Press writers' poll. The Seminoles earned their first national ranking of 25th in last week's ESPN/USA Today poll - their first ranking since January of 1998.

Experienced Players: Besides the five seniors on the FSU team, the Seminoles have built their roster with experience. Their roster consist of 11 combined seasons of either junior college or high school preparatory playing season.

Road Woes: NC State road woes are no secret. Look for a frenzied FSU crowd to push he Seminoles to take advantage of this weakness of the Pack. Players like Julius Hodge and Marcus Melvin need to step out and have All-ACC performances to put the slumping road games to an end.

Key Match-Up: Backcourt vs. backcourt: True freshman Engin Atsur and slumping Scooter Sherrill will be challenged against Tim Pickett's and Von Wafer's quickness on the perimeter. Matching both players defensively will be difficult for NC State, as Hodge will more than likely have his hands full with forward Anthony Richardson. When the Pack is on offense, the NCSU guards need to hold their turnovers to single digits. The FSU speed in transition can be a game winner, and the best way to contain them is to keep the turnovers to a respectable number.

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Florida State's Tim Pickett led the Seminoles in scoring with 15 as the Seminoles upset the Blue Devils in 2003, 75-70, for Leonard Hamilton's biggest victory to date as the Seminole coach. (AP Photo/Phil Coale)

No Name Pos Ht Wt Yr City (High School)
1 Michael Joiner F 6-7 238   SR Fayetteville, N.C./Seventy-First
4 Todd Galloway G 5-11 178   SO Baltimore, Md./Notre Dame (Va.) Academy
10 Nate Johnson G 6-3 183   SR Kansas City, Mo./Ruskin
12 Al Thornton F 6-7 208   FR Perry, Ga./Perry
20 Andrew Wilson G 6-6 206   SO Kennesaw, Ga./Harrison
21 Benson Callier G 6-6 204   SO St. Petersburg, Fla./George Junior (Pa.) Republic
22 Tim Pickett G 6-4 207   SR Daytona Beach, Fla./Daytona Beach Mainland
23 Von Wafer G 6-5 210   FR Homer, La./Heritage (Tex.) Christian
25 Romero Diego F 6-10 245   JR Comodoro Rivadavia, Argentina
30 Orenn Fells F 6-6 196   SR Winston-Salem, N.C./Carver
32 Alexander Johnson F 6-10 250 FR Albany, Ga./Dougherty
33 Mike Mathews F/C 6-10 230   SR Blountstown/Florida High School
51 Adam Waleskowski F 6-8 240   JR Kettering, Ohio/Bishop Alter
54 Anthony Richardson F 6-7 189   JR Raleigh, N.C./Leesville Road

*Thanks to Seminole.com for much of the information in this preview.

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