Constant Convocation Center (8,650)
1 p.m., Fox Sports Net
While North Carolina has the youngest team in the nation, Old Dominion is not too far behind. The Monarchs will likely start two freshmen and a sophomore against the Heels
Freshman forward Alex Loughton will anchor the middle. The 6-9, 235-pound Australian posted 15 points and 11 rebounds in ODU's second exhibition game.
"Alex has a real good nose for the ball," head coach Blaine Taylor said. "He has nice perimeter skills, excellent passing instincts and shooting touch for a youngster his size."
The other likely starter in the freshman class is Isaiah Hunter, a 6-2 point from Charlotte considered one of the CAA's top incoming talents.
But the two star leaders on the Monarchs are seniors Ricardo Marsh and Rasheed Wright.
"Marsh is a kid who is 6-8, 240 - a cut up 240 ... he doesn't look like he has much body fat on him," UNC head coach Matt Doherty said. "He can really post up strong, face up from mid range and shoot the three. So, he's a real tough matchup for us.
"And then Wright is similar, just smaller - 6-5, 210. He can post up, take it outside, shoot the three, can drive it. Those two guys are really big time players and ACC caliber players."
Both players are also from North Carolina, Marsh from Mebane and Wright from Greensboro.
"I'm sure those kids will be highly motivated against us on Sunday," Doherty said.
The game is the season opener for ODU and opens its new facility, the Constant Convocation Center, which quickly sold out Sunday's tickets.
With a matchup against Kansas on Wednesday in New York City, Carolina could look past the Monarchs, but Doherty has several reasons why the Heels can't afford to do that.
"We're opening up their new building, they have a great coach, and two of their players are from North Carolina," Doherty said, "so I know they are going to be fired up to play us."
Background Location: Norfolk, Va. Enrollment: 19,500 Conference: Colonial (CAA) Nickname: Monarchs Colors: Slate Blue, Silver, & Light Blue Head Coach: Blaine Taylor Record at ODU: 13-16 Last year Record: 13-16 Conference record: 7-11, 6th Postseason: NONE Key personnel losses: Pierre Greene (6-2, G) – 9.9 ppg, 3.0 apg Clay McGowen (6-11, C) – 5.3 ppg, 5.2 rpg Probable Starting Lineup: Isaiah Hunter (6-2, G, Fr.) – First season Kiah Thomas (6-4, G, So.) – 5.3 ppg, 2.6 rpg Rasheed Wright (6-6, F, Sr.) – 14.1 ppg, 5.4 rpg Ricardo Marsh (6-7, F, Sr.) – 15.3 ppg, 7.2 rpg, 2.7 bpg Alex Loughton (6-9, F, Fr.) – First season Key Reserves: Troy Nance (5-9, G, Jr.) – 5.9 ppg, 4.2 apg John Waller (6-4, G, Jr.) – 7.9 ppg, 3.2 rpg Janko Mrksic (6-10, C, Fr.) – First season Joe Principe (6-10, C, So.) – 0.8 ppg, 1.3 T.J. Waldon (6-4, F, Fr.) – First seasonPhoto Gallery
(Photos by Allsport.)