ACC Scouting Report: N.C. State

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Tony Bennett takes his team to Raleigh for the Hoos’ ACC opener.

The Virginia men’s basketball team opens ACC play on Saturday at noon at N.C. State. The Sabre has asked Cvillehoops13 to bring back scouting reports for ACC opponents so that you know the strengths, weaknesses, and potential gameplans for the Cavaliers to beat league teams. He gets things started with a look at the Wolfpack.

N.C. State’s Offense

Most teams playing State this year have collapsed down on Tracy Smith significantly, either using zone techniques or just switching over to a zone. Virginia won’t do that to a significant degree unless Smith forces them to within the structure of the game. Therefore Sidney Lowe will run a very basic NBA style offense through Smith on the left block (always the left).

The Pack will come down and do one of two things immediately. They will use Dennis Horner on the side opposite of Smith to run a two-man screen game with Scott Wood. On the other side, either Farnold Degand or C.J. Williams will set up and prepare to play a two-man entry situation with Smith. This offense spreads the defense and isolates match-ups, allowing Lowe to get the ball inside to Smith more effectively.

If State doesn’t come down with that look, then it will run either Degand or Williams off of Horner and have Wood use Smith, who is already posted up, as a screen and pop out to either shoot or play a two-man game with Smith.

When these looks break down, then State usually brings Horner up for a ball-screen situation going away from Smith and, depending on the outcome, the guard can either drive with an option to dump to Smith, kick it to Horner on either a pop or a roll, or pull the ball out and hit Smith flashing to the middle of the lane.

N.C. State Defense

On defense, N.C. State runs a very typical man to man, which it extends at times and sometimes packs in. If there were a mirror image for Virginia defensively, in terms of execution, it would be NCSU. The Pack struggles with team defensive concepts, communication