Syracuse will try to move to 25-0 on the season when it hosts NC State on Saturday afternoon at the Carrier Dome. Here is a quick look at the game:
STILL ON THE BUBBLE: After a brutal start to conference play, NC State has fought their way back into the NCAA tournament picture. The Wolfpack stumbled at the start of ACC play, going 1-4. But since then, they’ve won 5 of 6, including a pair of critical games in the past week over Wake Forest and Miami. Those two wins have not only vaulted NC State to sixth in the conference, but have also brightened their NCAA tournament hopes. Aside from a loss against Wake Forest earlier in the year, the Wolfpack don’t have any bad losses (an early season loss to North Carolina Central doesn’t seem as bad in hindsight since they are currently tops in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference). But their NCAA resume also lacks a signature win. Fortunately for the Wolfpack, they have remaining match-ups against UNC, Pitt and Syracuse.
SCOUTING THE WOLFPACK: TJ Warren has done it all for NC State, averaging a team-high 23.1 points and 7.4 rebounds per game. In an 82-67 win over Wake Forest on Tuesday, Warren went off for 34 points and 10 rebounds, including 15 for 26 shooting from the field. Junior guard Ralston Turner has come on lately to become the second option that the Wolfpack has been desperately searching for, averaging 16.5 points in the last two games (he had averaged 9.0 points in the first 18 games).
HISTORICALLY SPEAKING: These two teams last played each other on Dec. 17, 2011 with the Orange winning 88-72. Dion Waiters scored a career-high 22 points, while Kris Joseph chipped in 21. SU leads the all-time series 4-1.
GAME INFORMATION: Saturday, Feb. 15 at 3 p.m. at the Carrier Dome. TV: ESPN3/ACC Network.