North Carolina State (10-9, 6-8) vs. No. 15 Virginia (15-5, 11-3)
John Paul Jones Arena, Charlottesville, Virginia; Wednesday, 6:30 p.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: No. 15 Virginia presents a tough challenge for North Carolina State. North Carolina State has won one of its three games against ranked teams this season. Virginia has dropped to No. 15 in the latest AP rankings following losses to Florida State and Duke last week.
SAVVY VETERANS: Senior leadership has been on display for both teams this year. Sam Hauser, Jay Huff and Kihei Clark have combined to account for 56 percent of Virginia’s scoring this season and 63 percent of the team’s points over its last five games. For North Carolina State, Jericole Hellems, Manny Bates, Devon Daniels and D.J. Funderburk have collectively accounted for 57 percent of all North Carolina State scoring, including 68 percent of the team’s points over its last five games.JUMPING FOR JERICOLE: Hellems has connected on 41.5 percent of the 53 3-pointers he’s attempted and has made 4 of 8 over the last three games. He’s also converted 80.7 percent of his free throws this season.
TWO STREAKS: North Carolina State has won its last three road games, scoring 78.3 points and allowing 66.7 points during those contests. Virginia has won its last nine home games, scoring an average of 72.3 points while giving up 57.6.
ASSIST RATIOS: The Cavs have recently converted buckets via assists more often than the Wolfpack. Virginia has 41 assists on 67 field goals (61.2 percent) over its past three matchups while North Carolina State has assists on 38 of 81 field goals (46.9 percent) during its past three games.
DID YOU KNOW: The disruptive North Carolina State defense has forced opponents to turn the ball over on 23.2 percent of all possessions, the 26th-best rate in the nation. Virginia has a forced-turnover percentage of only 15.8 percent through 20 games (ranking the Cavaliers 327th among Division I teams).
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