Tag Archives: Duke

Quick Hitters – UNC @ Elon

Quick Hitters from North Carolina’s 116-67 road win on Friday night over Elon.

Highlights:

  • Let’s not bury the lead: rebounding was the story of the game. 60 rebounds for Carolina. First time to haul in 60 boards since grabbing 64 against Duke on March 5, 2016. Additionally, the Heels had more offensive boards (24) than Elon had defensive boards (21). And those offensive rebounds led to:

  • A point of concern has been turnovers. That number continued to shrink tonight, with Carolina only surrendering 11. Most importantly, the point guards combined for only one of those 11.
  • Garrison Brooks did not have the same numbers as he did against Wofford, but was solid. Seven points on 3-for-5 shooting, six rebounds, and three steals in 16 minutes. Sterling Manley had a much more productive night: 11 points and eight boards in 15 minutes. A combined 18 points & 14 boards in 31 minutes is great production from the center position.
  • Remember last year when Cam Johnson only shot 34% from deep? Two games is an admittedly small sample size, but he is 7-for-10 so far this year. Additionally he hasn’t missed a free throw yet and is leading the team in scoring. Impressively, as well as Johnson is shooting, he’s still looking for his teammates. Against Wofford, a lob in the lane to Garrison Brooks. Against Elon, a kick out to Coby White for a three in transition. In both instances, Johnson could have taken the shot and no one would have batted an eye. But in both instances he found a better shot. Here’s Johnson talking about his shot:
  • Last year, Carolina had to rely heavily on the starters for consistent offensive production. While tonight’s game was admittedly against Elon, the bench contributed 65 points.
  • Stop me if you’ve heard this before: the Tar Heel guards will need to do better at stopping dribble penetration (which leads to wide open threes) going forward. After allowing the Phoenix to shoot 57% from the field in the first half, Carolina buckled down in the last 20 minutes and allowed a paltry 16% field goal percentage.
  • Leaky Black is the type of guy that might wind up with a triple-double on his résumé before he leaves Chapel Hill. The rangy freshman finished tonight with eight points, six boards, five assists, zero turnovers and a steal in just 15 minutes.
  • 10 different Tar Heels scored…in the FIRST HALF. All 15 available players scored a point in the game (Walker Miller was out with an injury).

  • Poor Kenny Williams can’t buy a basket right now. He still hasn’t made a field goal and his only point in the first two games is one made free throw. As has been documented, Williams is impacting the games in multiple other ways. His shot will come around (unless his shoulder injury from the other night is worse than we know).
  • More on the point guards: Coby White (14 points, three boards, two assists, a turnover and a steal), traditionally a score-first point guard, is still learning how to balance when to hunt his shot and when to distribute. He is young, relentlessly fast, can light it up and will have a long leash. Be patient with him Tar Heel fans. Remember than playing point guard for Roy Williams is one of the most difficult things in college basketball. Seventh Woods (three points, three boards, five assists, one block and zero turnovers) looked the most comfortable I’ve ever seen him. He is in control, setting others up and making good play for himself. Here’s White talking about adjusting to the point guard role:
  • Having more offensive firepower this year is allowing Luke Maye to somehow fly under the radar. He scored 24 points against Wofford and it was an afterthought. He had a near double-double tonight (eight points, 10 boards) and it’s just business as usual. He’s a career below 60% free throw shooter who is shooting 91% so far this year. The lack of attention will hopefully allow Maye to be more fresh as the season wears on.
  • Is it time to talk about Nassir Little now? This guy can do a little bit of everything. Hit threes. Block shots. Dunk ferociously. Play defense. Despite an authoritative tip-dunk at the end of first half, Little’s first huge highlight reel dunk came with just under 14:00 left in the game after stealing an Elon pass and finding himself alone on the break. Little is beautifully not forcing anything at this point, just playing within the flow of the team. He is very “North Carolina”.

Roy Williams post-game press conference:

Remember to check in for Quick Hitters after every North Carolina basketball game. Next up is Carolina’s home opener against Stanford on Monday, November 12. Tip is at 7:00ET on ESPN2.

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ACC Home Stretch

Here we go. The penultimate Saturday of the ACC college basketball regular season. The top 6 teams are all ranked. The top 6 teams all have 3 conference games remaining. The top 6 teams are separated by only 2 games. This is fun.

Here’s the pecking order heading into the weekend action:

  1. UNC (12-3)
  2. Miami (11-4)
  3. Louisville (11-4)
  4. Virginia (10-5)
  5. Duke (10-5)
  6. Notre Dame (10-5)

Each team has a game this weekend (Duke plays Sunday while the other 5 teams play Saturday), and 4 of the 6 play each other. UNC travels to Virginia while Louisville heads to Miami.

Each of the top 6 then has a game at some point during the week.

Finally, on the last Saturday of the regular season, all 6 top ACC teams are back in action with (once again) 4 of the top 6 playing each other. UNC makes the short trip to Cameron Indoor while Louisville and their self-imposed ban will play their final game of the season at Virginia.

Did I mention that this is fun?

Here’s the kicker: there are 5 remaining games between these top 6 teams, which means there are 5 guaranteed remaining losses amongst them. The head-to-head games are:

  1. Louisville @ Miami (2.27)
  2. UNC @ Virginia (2.27)
  3. Miami @ Notre Dame (3.2)
  4. Louisville @ Virginia (3.5)
  5. UNC @ Duke (3.5)

Suffice it to say, there is much to be decided in the final week of ACC regular season action. The regular season championship is on the line (which, along with pride, is the only thing on the line for Louisville). Conference tournament seeding is on the line (remember, the top 4 teams all get a double bye). NCAA tournament seeding is on the line. It should be a great last week of conference games.

Oh, by the way, this is fun.

For reference sake, here are the remaining schedules of the current top 6 ACC schools:

UNC (12-3)

  1. @ Virginia (2.27)
  2. Syracuse (2.29)
  3. @ Duke (3.5)

Miami (11-4)

  1. Louisville (2.27)
  2. @ Notre Dame (3.2)
  3. @ VT (3.5)

Louisville (11-4)

  1. @ Miami (2.27)
  2. GT (3.1)
  3. @ Virginia (3.5)

Virginia (10-5)

  1. UNC (2.27)
  2. @ Clemson (3.1)
  3. Louisville (3.5)

Duke (10-5)

  1. @ Pitt (2.28)
  2. Wake (3.1)
  3. UNC (3.5)

Notre Dame (10-5)

  1. @ FSU (2.27)
  2. Miami (3.2)
  3. NC St. (3.5)