Game Preview: Duke Blue Devils vs North Carolina State Wolfpack

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Duke (13-1, 1-1)


North Carolina State (10-5, 0-2)

When: Jan. 6 | 8:00 PM (ET)
Where: Raleigh, NC - PNC Arena
Watch Live: ESPN

Next up for the Duke Blue Devils is another true road game against an opponent in need of a signature win. Kevin Keatts, the news coach of the Wolfpack has described his team as, "Not that talented". That does not mean the Wolfpack is without weaponry and purpose. A win against Duke would be huge lift for a team suffering through back to back loses. As Boston College showed, nothing in the ACC is given. N.C. State has a veteran core led by grad transfer Allerick Freeman, a name Duke fans should know as there was a brief flirtation with a Duke commitment a few years back but that didn't last very long. Freeman leads the Wolpack in points per game at 15.3, he also averages just under 5 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game. He is joined in the backcourt by Torin Dorn, a redshirt junior, and Braxton Beverly - the only freshman in the starting lineup. Dorn and Beverly are averaging 13.2 and 10.2 points per game respectively with Beverly adding 4.4 assists per contest. The frontcourt duties are held down by senior Lennard Freeman and Omer Yurtseven. Yurtseven is second in rebounding on the team at 6.8 a game while Lennard Freeman comes in at 4rd. The Wolfpack do an excellent job on the offensive glass and are 75th in the nation in that statistic, which bodes well for a team with no double-digit rebounders. Their guards are excellent on the glass with Dorn averaging a team high 7.6 a game.

Coach Keatts does have a deeper team than Duke, utilizing senior Abdul Malik-Abu, who contributes 7 points per game and 5.4 boards off the bench. Lavar Batts Jr and Sam Hunt also average double-figure minutes for the Wolfpack as well.

Coach K and the Duke Blue Devils have won 2 straight including a thriller in Cameron Indoor Stadium against a very impressive Florida State team (100 - 93). Marvin Bagley leads the young Devils with 21.9 points a game coupled with 11.6 rebounds. Bagley is aided by double-figure scorers at each position in the starting lineup. Senior captain Grayson Allen is averaging 17.4 a game and 4.4 assists. The Lineup aside from Allen are made up of freshmen including: Trevon Duval at the point guard spot where he is averaging 12 points and 6 assists a game, Wendell Carter Jr who provides the inside punch next to Bagley, Carter is a averaging 13.7 and 8.9 rebounds a game.

Duke has scored 100 or more points in 2 straight games and will look to offensively dominate the Wolfpack. Keys for Duke will be to shore up defensive weaknesses, especially on the perimeter and keep a good offensive rebounding NC State team off of the boards. If Duke rebounds at its current clip then the game should be theirs to have but as Duke has seen this year already - teams are hungry, especially at home. NC State will look to rebound literally and figuratively against Duke.

Keys for Duke:

-Rebound the basketball at a high level - keep state off of the offensive glass

Create turnovers that lead to easy offense

-Shot selection - take good shots, especially beyond the arc / be aware of time and circumstance

-Defend without fouling - especially Trevon Duval & Wendell Carter Jr. - Duke doesnt have the depth to overcome this easily.

-Defend the perimeter and limit 3 point shots off of open looks

Projected Starting Lineups:


F Marvin Bagley III
F Wendell Carter Jr.
G Gary Trent Jr.
G Grayson Allen
G Trevon Duval


North Carolina State:

C Omer Yurtseven
F Lennard Freeman
G Allerick Freeman
G Torin Dorn
G Braxton Beverly

Duke FG Percentage
North Carolina State FG Percentage
Duke 3pt Percentage
North Carolina State 3pt Percentage
Duke FT Percentage
North Carolina State FT Percentage
Duke Scoring Average
North Carolina State Scoring Average
  • Overall: 247th meeting; Duke leads, 146-100

  • In Durham: Duke leads, 63-28

  • In Raleigh: Duke leads, 48-41

  • At neutral sites: Duke leads, 22-19

  • Current streak: NC State, W1

  • Coach K vs. NC State: 55-23 (55-23 at Duke)

  • Senior Grayson Allen is averaging 16.5 points, 2.3 rebounds and 3.6 assists in six games versus the Wolfpack. Allen had back-to-back 28-point efforts in wins over NC State that were separated by 14 days -- Jan. 23, 2016 (88-78) and Feb. 6, 2016 (88-80).

  • Javin DeLaurier and Marques Bolden are the only other active Blue Devils to have seen time versus NC State.

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