Tip-Off: 12:10 p.m.
Radio: Airtime begins @ 11:30 AM on the Wolfpack Radio Network
NC State Information
"At any one moment in time you simply are who you are. The key is you do the best with what you have given your circumstances. We've been very fortunate that a number of guys have stepped up and played very well for us. It really reflects the true meaning of team. Our guys have shown a tremendous amout of grit and resiliency through the year." -- NC State head coach Herb Sendek
"We know that they have talented players. As a whole, we just have to put it all together. We have to be good on the boards, and if we stick with our tough defense, we'll put ourselves in a position to win the game." -- NC State guard Julius Hodge
"[He made] an incredibly gutsy, gutsy move to go to a Princeton-type offense, and it's worked out incredibly great for him. I've always had great admiration, the fact that he's stucked with it during not so easy times and now he's got himself back in the tournament." -- UCONN head coach Jim Calhoun
"They are going to be a tough team, but at the same time they are used to losing. I think if we get them down early, it's going to be a hard time for them." -- UCONN swingman Denham Brown
NC State's Probable Starters
G Engin Atsur 9.3 ppg 2.6 apg G Cameron Bennerman 9.2 ppg 2.6 rpg G Julius Hodge 17.0 ppg 6.8 rpg F Ilian Evtimov 9.8 ppg 3.8 rpg F Andrew Brackman 7.3 ppg 3.5 rpgConnecticut's Probable Starters
G Marcus Williams 9.2 ppg 7.9 apg G Denham Brown 10.8 ppg 4.1 rpg C Josh Boone 12.6 ppg 8.5 rpg F Charlie Villanueva 13.5 ppg 8.2 rpg F Rudy Gay 12.1 ppg 5.5 rpgPlayers to Watch
Julius Hodge -- Hodge was outstanding in NC State's opening round win against Charlotte and the Wolfpack will need the same performance to advance past UCONN. He's a matchup nightmare, but look for Rudy Gay and Denham Brown to rotate onto Hodge.
Marcus Williams -- Williams is the nation's leading assist man, and he's had a terrific season for UCONN. However, he's the only true guard on the Huskies' roster, and if he gets into foul trouble or aggravates his ankle sprain, UCONN could be in trouble.
NC State Game Notes
NC State is one of just 21 teams who have earned NCAA bids each of the past four seasons. This marks just the second time in school history that the Wolfpack has gone to four straight tournaments. NC State earned five straight bids from 1985-89 before the current streak.
The last time the Pack had won four of its last six regular season games when the opposition was ranked in at least three of those games was in 1979-80, when Norm Sloan's team finished the teason 9-1 and faced four ranked teams in its last six games (three top 10 teams).
Ö This is the first time the Wolfpack has earned a No. 10 seed. This is the second lowest seed for NC State entering the NCAA Tournament. The only time NC State entered with a lower seed was in 1987 when the Pack was seeded 11th for a first round game with Florida. Florida won that game, 82-70.
Ö The Wolfpack has played two games against the No. 7 seed in its NCAA Tournament history, winning both. NC State defeated Iowa State in the Regional semifinals in 1986 and seventhseeded Alabama in the regional semifinals in 1985.
Ö This will be the second time in the last four years that NC State and UCONN could meet in the second round of the tournament. The Huskies eliminated the Pack, 77-74, in the second round of 2002 at the MCI Center in Washington, DC.
Ö NC State's 1983 team won the National Championship as a No. 6 seed. That ties as the second-worst seed in the history of the tournament to win the N C A A Championship. Kansas won the 1988 National Championship as a No. 6 seed. The worst seed for an NCAA Champion was a No. 8 by Villanova in 1985.
Ö Three NC State athletic directors have served on the NCAATournament Committee. Willis Casey served from 1975- 80, Les Robinson in 2000 while he was the A D at NC State and Lee Fowler, the Pack's current AD, served from 2001- 02. Fowler was the committee chair in 2002.
Ö NC State has won two National Championships, but only one Wolfpack player has been named the MVP of the Final Four. David Thompson won the award in 1974 when NC State defeated Marquette and Al McGuire for the championship. In 1983, Houston's Akeem Olajuwon won the award even though NC State won the championship. That is the last time a player on a losing team won the MVP of the Final Four.
Ö An NC State player has led the NCAA Tournament in scoring (total points basis) twice, both seasons the Pack won the National Championship. David Thompson led the tournament in 1974 with 97 points, while Dereck Whittenburg (now head coach at Fordham), led the tournament in scoring with 120 points in 1983.
Connecticut Game Notes
Josh Boone, Charlie Villanueva
Rudy Gay, Denham Brown