#32 North Carolina State Men's Basketball 2018-2019 Preview

North Carolina State Wolfpack
2018-2019 Overall Rank: #32
Conference Rank: #8 ACC
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Coach Kevin Keatts had a successful debut season with North Carolina State, winning 21 games and reaching the NCAA Tournament. The trip to the tournament was brief though and getting back will be difficult thanks in part to the loaded ACC. And the Wolfpack lose five of their eight regular contributors from a season ago. The good news is that Torin Dorn, Braxton Beverly and Markell Johnson all started last season and will form the nucleus of this team. Dorn averaged 13.9 points and 63 rebounds and the 6-5 wing could be an All-ACC caliber player if his outside shot falls more consistently. Beverly will knock down plenty of three-pointers and is a good passer too. Johnson is one of the best passers in the country and dished out 7.3 assists per game while adding 8.9 points. He is an efficient shooter and overall scorer and could look for his shot more often this year.
2017-18 Record: 21-12, 11-7
2017-18 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Kevin Keatts
Coach Record: 21-12 at NC State, 93-40 overall
Key Departed Players:
Allerik Freeman, Guard, 16.1 ppg
Omar Yurtseven, Center, 13.5 ppg
Lennard Freeman, Forward, 7.9 ppg
Sam Hunt, Guard, 5.5 ppg
Abdul-Malik Abu, Forward, 5.2 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Torin Dorn, Senior, Guard, 13.9 ppg
Braxton Beverly, Sophomore, Guard, 9.5 ppg
Markell Johnson, Junior, Guard, 8.9 ppg
Key New Players:
Manny Bates, Freshman, Forward
C.J. Bryce, Junior Guard, Transfer from UNC Wilmington
Devin Daniels, Sophomore, Guard, Transfer from Utah
Blake Harris, Sophomore, Guard, Transfer from Missouri
DJ Funderburk, Sophomore, Forward, JC Transfer
Jericole Hellems, Freshman, Forward
Eric Lockett, Senior, Guard, Grad Transfer from Florida International
Ian Steere, Freshman, Forward
Wyatt Walker, Senior, Forward, Grad Transfer from Samford
Sacha Killeya-Jones, Junior, Forward, Transfer from Kentucky, not eligible
Besides the three returning players, NC State will have to rely entirely on their large group of newcomers. In all there are five Division I transfers, one junior college transfer and three freshmen. Missouri transfer Blake Harris will provide depth at the point guard spot, while UNC Wilmington transfer C.J. Bryce can do a lot of everything. Two years ago he averaged 17.4 points per game and was a first-team All-CAA selection. Devin Daniels from Utah and Eric Lockett from Florida International will add even more options on the perimeter. The frontcourt brings in some much needed experience with junior college transfer DJ Funderburk, who also spent a little time at Ohio State, and Samford transfer Wyatt Walker. All three of the top 150 ranked recruits are also forwards. At 6-11 and 221 pounds, Manny Bates is the tallest player on the roster and he is expected to at least make an impact on the defensive end of the floor. If the frontcourt can find a consistent offensive threat, this is a group that should be in good shape to get back to the NCAA Tournament and potentially do some serious damage once they get there.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 81.3 (32nd in nation, 3rd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 75.1 (248, 15)
Field-Goal Percentage: 47.0 (56, 3)
Field-Goal Defense: 46.5 (296, 15)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 8.0 (140, 8)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 37.2 (70, 4)
Free-Throw Percentage: 69.6 (251, 12)
Rebound Margin: 0.4 (181, 11)
Assists Per Game: 16.1 (32, 4)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.1 (106, 8)
Madness 2018 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#114 Immanuel Bates
#135 Ian Steere
#139 Jericole Hellems