Previewing Albany

After a lackluster showing Monday, and some tough practices on Tuesday, the Tar Heels are back in action Wednesday against Albany. Tip-off at the Smith is set for 7 p.m. and will be televised by ESPNU.

North Carolina (10-3) vs. Albany (4-9)
Chapel Hill, N.C. -- Dean E. Smith Center
7:00 p.m., ESPNU (Dan McLaughlin, Paul Biancardi)


"Their depth is ridiculous because they just bring McDonald's All-American after McDonald's All-American into the game." -- Albany head coach Will Brown

"It's really, really bright in there. Baby blue is a really bright color ... it's hard to see as soon as you walk in there." -- Albany senior (and former Virginia player) Will Harris


Season to Date: Albany enters Wednesday contest with a 4-9 record. The Great Danes did themselves no favors in setting up this early season schedule as North Carolina represents the sixth team who earned a 2009 NCAA Tournament berth. To make matters worse, Albany is playing its final opponent in a string of eight consecutive road dates, breaking the previous mark of five straight away games to start the 2004-05 season. The Great Danes have not played a home game at SEFCU Arena since Nov. 22.

Proficiency From Deep: Forward Will Harris leads Albany in scoring with a 15.4-points-per-game average, thanks to his ability to drain 3-pointers on a consistent basis. The former Virginia Cavalier is knocking down 46.0 percent of his long-range bombs (23-50), giving the Great Danes their lone outside threat. The 6-foot-5, 230-pounder is connecting on 52.0 percent of his total field goal attempts (77-of-148) while pulling down 4.5 rebounds per contest.

A Multifaceted Guard: 6-foot, 220-pound guard Tim Ambrose is described as "an explosive leaper with a solid build," which helps to explain how someone of his stature is able to make his presence felt all over the court. The Brentwood, N.Y. native is averaging 15.1 points per game on 44.2 percent shooting (72-of-163), while leading the team in rebounding (5.1) and dishing out a second-best 3.4 assists per contest. Unfortunately, he has also committed a team-high 44 turnovers.

Accustomed to Small Houses: On Wednesday night, the Great Danes will play before a crowd of more than 10,000 for just the 20th time in the program's history. Two of those occurrences happened this season in losses at Syracuse (15,707) and Siena (12,960). The biggest crowd Albany has ever played before took place against Connecticut at the Wachovia Center when 19,990 were present to watch the Huskies' victory on Mar. 17, 2006.

Turnovers, Turnovers: The Great Danes rank 319th nationally in turnovers committed per contest (17.3). They have coughed up 20 turnovers or more in six games this season.

Series History: Wednesday's game will mark the first meeting between the Tar Heels and Great Danes in men's basketball.

Projected Starters:
23 Tim Ambrose (6-0, 220, Jr.) – 15.1 ppg, 3.4 apg
11 Mike Johnson (6-1, 190, Sr.) – 8.0 ppg, 3.6 apg
3 Will Harris (6-5, 230, Sr.) – 15.4 ppg, 4.5 rpg
12 Scotty McRae (6-8, 220, Sr.) – 4.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg
54 Brett Gifford (6-11, 265, Sr.) – 2.5 ppg, 3.8 rpg

Top Reserves:
4 Fran Urli (6-8, 225, Jr.) – 4.5 ppg, 2.0 rpg
24 Jake Lindfors (6-10, 235, Fr.) – 3.2 ppg, 2.9 rpg
21 Blake Metcalf (6-9, 250, Fr.) – 2.1 ppg, 2.8 rpg

Location: Albany, N.Y.
Enrollment: 13,246
Conference: America East
Nickname: Great Danes
Colors: Purple & Gold
Head Coach: Will Brown
Record at UA: 110-133

UA Info
Roster & Bios

Inside Carolina Top Stories