Georgia Tech-N.C. State wrap

Greetings

Three thoughts from Thursday night’s Georgia Tech loss to N.C. State at Philips Arena.

1. Tech gave a good account of itself in the loss and gave a particularly noteworthy display in the first nine minutes. The Jackets had more energy and tenacity, attacking the offensive glass and opening up leads of 17-9 and 19-11. Tech hadn’t led by eight points at any point of any game since beating the Wolfpack Jan. 11. The Jackets moved the ball quickly and ran a couple of successful pick-and-rolls, which I haven’t seen a lot of.

It says something, though, that the Jackets had shot 6-for-16 when center Daniel Miller put down a dunk for the 17-9 lead, kind of a good news/bad news situation. The Jackets were playing with so much force that they took that large a lead despite not being able to shoot very well. By the end of the half, N.C. State had taken the game back and led 26-24. The Jackets had 13 offensive rebounds in the first half and had managed to turn that into six second-chance points.

“Imagine if we would have scored the extra points (off offensive rebounds),” forward Kammeon Holsey said. “We would have been up by five.”

2. Tech shot 1-for-17 from 3-point range. N.C. State took 10 fewer shots in the game, 49 to 59, but made 6 of 17 3-pointers and won by 11 points. That wasn’t the only difference in the game, but a big part of it.

The Jackets have shown themselves to be more than capable of shooting from distance – they were 17-for-38 in back-to-back games North Carolina and Florida State – but this is by and large not a very good shooting team, and it’s hard to see that changing in the final four weeks of the season.

But even just becoming a slightly below average jump-shooting team will help.

“Those are all good shots,” Brian Gregory said of Mfon Udofia’s shot selection. “You’ve just got to live with that. He’s a tough enough kid. He’ll get in the gym [Friday] and get some more shots up.”

3. The loss of backup center Nate Hicks will be an obstacle. Hicks, who missed Thursday’s game with mononucleosis and will be about probably for two weeks, had been averaging 7.2 minutes in ACC games. He’s not an impact player, but can bang in the middle and give Miller a rest. Without Hicks, Miller’s backup is essentially Holsey, who played 31 minutes Thursday, his most since the Georgia game.

Miller played 34 minutes, his most in an ACC game this season. Forward Julian Royal was limited as he had been away from the team due to a death in the family and only returned Thursday afternoon.

“He was understandably not as efficient as he has been and I give him credit,” Gregory said. “He kept fighting and trying to do it. He was drained and I appreciate his sacrifice for the team as well as his family’s.”

4. This isn’t entirely relevant, but three Wolfpack signees were named McDonald’s All-Americans Thursday. Pretty good day for N.C. State. I think this conference is going to be considerably better in two or three years than it is now.

Thanks for reading.

Ken Sugiura, Georgia Tech blog

22 comments Add your comment

juvenal

February 10th, 2012
9:47 am

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juvenal

February 10th, 2012
9:47 am

long season…screen is bouncy today…

ToeMeetsLeather

February 10th, 2012
10:30 am

Team showing progress – check
New Arena on schedule – check
Recruiting the state of Georgia strong – check
One year off the Hewitt motgage paid – check
Free throw shooting improved – check
We can get the ball in bounds this year without blowing most of our timeouts – check
Things are looking up guys!

ToeMeetsLeather

February 10th, 2012
10:34 am

need spellcheck “Hewitt mortgage/buy out”

swarmi

February 10th, 2012
12:02 pm

Poor shooting cannot win games. Try to imagine Duke shooting 1/17 against UNC…too extreme to even imagine, isn’t it! Then, try to imagine Tech shooting the three like Duke did Tuesday night….equally too extreme to imagine. If Coach G can get a point (and a couple of shooters), maybe…

Ken Stallings

February 10th, 2012
12:30 pm

We owed Tech for the upset in Raleigh. But, I think that Glenn Rice kid is going to take Tech to a good place before his career is over.

LG

February 10th, 2012
12:37 pm

Without a doubt the worst shooting Basketball Team I have ever watched! Nobody on this team can hit a 3 point shot!

wreckbone

February 10th, 2012
12:58 pm

Like the D
Like the effort
A little lacking in experience and talent. Glen Rice has been good but I hope he and Udofia and Holsey and Miller will be much bigger impact players next year. Add in some Poole and a blue chip and a half and we won’t hear about how the other team is so much more talented than ours (kind of sick of hearing that)…We may hear the opposite. Good to see us getting some love from the commentators that are not named Barry. I agree the defense will help down the road. That’s how Duke wins a lot of times, others its shooting lights out.

We have competed well in most games. That is all I ask. With Hewitt we would get blown out so much, even when we had Favors, we would get 25 hung on us. That is happening much less with less talent.

crackbaby

February 10th, 2012
5:10 pm

I applaud the effort of the players and the spirit of the coaches to keep things positive and keep grinding.

That said, it’s REALLY REALLY hard to watch the games. The extended runs by opponents and Tech’s inability to get a key rebound or basket to stop the bleeding. Just tough.

Keep fighting, Jackets!

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
7:16 pm

Ken, your article on Gregory’s “non-negotiables” is excellent.

Bob Horner

February 10th, 2012
7:43 pm

GT basketball stinks, GT football recruiting, coaching and performance stinks. GT athletics stink.

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
8:15 pm

But the biggest stinker of all is Bob Horner

Full Metal Jacket

February 10th, 2012
8:21 pm

Thanks again for keeping us informed on the Tech beat, Ken. True Tech fans appreciate your diligence and efforts. I am very pleased with Coach Gregory’s leadership this season and I am confident it will pay off in the future. The team likewise has responded well during a challenging transitional season so I give them credit also. No one expected a lot of conference wins, but I think we might pull off another upset or two before season’s end. Hopefully new recruits can bring a little more offense next season.

david

February 10th, 2012
8:54 pm

Lets just be honest TECH sucks ass this year as does UGA…..No short cutting it.they both are very very very bad

Born2Buzz

February 10th, 2012
9:22 pm

We really need some decent guards. Just look at the box score. Our 4 guards shot a combined 2 for 23. Yikes!

BirminghamJacket

February 11th, 2012
7:18 am

Ken.

Stop covering basketball. It doesn’t matter.

I’d rather read off-season reports on the football team and how they’re doing.

Titus

February 11th, 2012
8:57 am

No reason why both the Wolfpack and Jackets can’t be consistent winners in the ACC and perennial top 25 teams. Tech has so much to offer and Atlanta is a great recruiting tool. The fan support and electricity of the by gone “Thriller Dome” era need to return. Hopefully that will come with the improved product on the floor and the new arena.

Go ‘Pack

RamblinGator

February 11th, 2012
9:19 am

Curious on anyone else’s thoughts, but I can’t understand why Derek Craig didn’t get put in during the last minute or so. We were down 6 or 7, and at the point where we were just jacking up threes, despite the whole 6% 3-pt shooting thing, but our best shooter was on the bench because he’s a walk on. Just put him in coach!

yellow britches

February 11th, 2012
10:12 am

I was listening to a local sports talk station this past week and they posed an interesting question: Which teams or sports programs will always be “the other guys”? For instance, The White Sox will always be the other guys in Chicago. Louisville will always be the other guys in Kentucky. Miss. State will always be the second team in Miss. no matter how good. You don’t have to go far to guess the next question: Will Georgia Tech always be the “other guys” in the state of Georgia? Has is always been so? Just wondering what students and bloggers think.

ToeMeetsLeather

February 11th, 2012
3:37 pm

“yellow”, a TECH basketball ticket was a hot item between 1985 and the late 1990’s. Cremins had a few tough years when kids started bolting to the league early(and he lost a couple of key assistants).
We all thought Hewitt could bring us back and he did have a very nice start(hince the stupid contract).
But we all know what happened over the next seven years.

We were not “the other guys” during that previous period. I think with the Thrashers exit and the NBA interest level being what it is in Atlanta, that TECH basketball can be a very hot “winter” item again with the right product. We shall see.

yellow britches

February 11th, 2012
8:29 pm

Thanks for the feedback Toe. I agree with you. Tech could be THE in state basketball program as we were for a while under Bobby. While the ACC is clearly down, seems like there are only two teams that matter anymore, the league will come back as far as basketball is concerned. The SEC is a football conference and clearly the best in the country. I know this dates me, but I do remember when Grant field was one of the larger venues in the south, much larger than Clemson and bigger than Samford stadium. The worm turned when Bobby Dodd retired. We got Bud Carson who was a hell of a defensive mind and UGA bagged Vince Dooley. We have been in a relative decline every since with a few interruptions during the Bobby Ross era. A big part of the change has been the kind of students that can get in and are interesting in going to Tech. It’s a much tougher school now than 30 or 40 years ago. That said, so is Georgia. Georgia has made real strides in upgrading the academic side. They managed not to neglect or handicap the athletic component however.

Ekim

February 12th, 2012
2:30 pm

Thank you for your insightful contributions to the blog, Bob Horner.