Previewing Presbyterian

In between two heavyweight road matchups (last week at Kentucky, next week at Texas), the Tar Heels return home for a Saturday tuneup against Presbyterian. Tip-off is 7:30 p.m. at the Smith Center and the game will not be on TV (online PPV only).

North Carolina (7-2) vs. Presbyterian (2-7)
Chapel Hill, N.C. -- Dean E. Smith Center
7:30, No TV (only available for online pay-per-view)


Season to Date: Presbyterian College enters Saturday's contest with a 2-7 (0-2 Big South) record. The Blue Hose lost their first five games of the season before defeating Southern University, 71-69, in the Las Vegas Invitational on Nov. 28. Head coach Gregg Nibert's squad also knocked off Montreat College before losing last week to High Point and Radford. Freshman forward Jake Troyli is leading the Blue Hose with 15.9 points and 5.2 rebounds, while sophomore guard Chase Holmes is contributing 13.2 points and 5.4 rebounds.

The Definition of Youth: Each year, numerous teams claim to have the youngest roster in the country. But Presbyterian College may actually fit that bill this season, with only one upperclassman – junior Walt Allen – seeing action through nine games. The Blue Hose started four freshmen and a sophomore in its most recent loss to Radford.

Oddly enough, there are three juniors that elected to red-shirt this season – Al'Lonzo Coleman, Josh Johnson and Pierre Miller. That trio contributed 54 percent of Presbyterian College's scoring last season. The reason? When that triumvirate was recruited, a red-shirt season was sold as an option in order to be able to play in the program's first potential appearance in the Big South Conference and NCAA Tournaments, as the school is currently in its third year of transitioning to Division I athletics. The group wanted to play as freshmen, so they selected the '09-10 season as their red-shirt year.

PC's Key to Victory: In both of Presbyterian College's victories this season, the Blue Hose connected on 50 percent or more of their field goal attempts.

Ball Handling Concerns: The Blue Hose have turned the ball over 149 times through nine games, while only dishing out 97 assists.

What's in a Nickname? Presbyterian College's Scotsman mascot may conjure up images of Mel Gibson and his merry band of blue face-painted warriors from the movie "Braveheart," but the truth behind the Blue Hose's nickname is slightly less dramatic. According to the school's official site, a letter written by athletic director Walter Johnson in 1935 indicated that he changed the uniform colors to blue twenty years earlier, leading a sportswriter to refer to the college's teams as the Blue Stockings. The nickname was shortened to the Blue Hose in 1954.

Series History: This is the first-ever meeting between these two programs.

Projected Starters:
5 Travis Smith (6-3, 180, Fr.) - 9.0 ppg, 4.0 apg
24 Khalid Mutakabbir (6-4, 190, Fr.) – 8.1 ppg, 3.7 rpg
21 Walt Allen (6-4, 220, Jr.) – 6.7 ppg, 3.7 rpg
31 Chase Holmes (6-4, 205, So.) – 13.2 ppg, 5.4 rpg
30 Jake Troyli (6-9, 185, Fr.) – 15.9 ppg, 5.2 rpg

Top Reserves:
32 Zach Faircloth (6-2, 175, Fr.) – 6.2 ppg, 3.4 rpg
15 Ryan Hargrave (6-6, 215, Fr.) – 2.0 ppg, 1.4 rpg
44 Jay Reynolds (6-10, 245, Fr.) – 1.2 ppg, 2.6 rpg

Location: Clinton, S.C.
Enrollment: 1,200
Conference: Big South
Nickname: Blue Hose
Colors: Garnet & Blue
Head Coach: Gregg Nibert
Record at PC: 346-255

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