DATE & TIME: Wednesday, December 4, 7:30 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: PNC Arena (19,700) -- Raleigh, North Carolina.
Television: ESPNU. Home Record: NU 3-1, NCST 4-1. Away Record: NU 1-1,
NCST 0-1. Neutral Record: NU 0-2, NCST 0-0. Conference Record: NU 0-0, NCST
0-0. Series Record: NCST leads, 3-1.
GAME NOTES: The NC State Wolfpack welcomes the Wildcats of Northwestern to PNC
Arena as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on Wednesday night.
Northwestern enters the tilt looking to snap a two-game slide. The most recent
of those setbacks came on Friday against nationally-ranked UCLA in the
Continental Tire Las Vegas Invitational. Following this tilt, the Wildcats
will return to Evanston for a five-game homestand leading into the New Year.
For NC State, this will be the fifth leg of a six-game homestand. The Wolfpack
improved to 4-1 at PNC Arena this season with Saturday's 75-56 rout over
NC State leads the all-time series, 3-1. This is the first meeting between
these two teams since 2009-10.
Northwestern's JerShon Cobb (15.1 ppg) has scored 22 points in each of his
last two games and was named to the Las Vegas Invitational all-tournament
team. Teammate Kale Abrahamson chipped in with a career-high 19 points, but
the Wildcats dug themselves an early 14-1 hole and never led. The defense was
virtually nonexistent, as UCLA knocked down an impressive 13-of-17 3-pointers
(.765) and shot 63.6 percent from the floor for the game. Tre Demps and Alex
Olah rounded out NU's double-digit scorers with 15 and 11 points,
respectively. Top scorer and rebounder Drew Crawford (14.3 ppg, 6.9 rpg)
missed the game with back spasms but said he expects to play on Wednesday
With or without Crawford, the 'Cats will no doubt have their hands full with
NC State's T.J. Warren, a 54-percent shooter from the floor who is averaging
22.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and nearly two steals per contest. However, he is
far from the Wolfpack's only scoring option, as Anthony Barber (13.0 ppg),
Desmond Lee (11.8 ppg, 5.2 rpg) and Jordan Vandenberg (10.5 ppg, 9.0 rpg) are
all averaging double figures. Warren led all scorers with 30 points in the win
over EKU, marking his second straight game with 30 points. He also pulled down
a season-high 11 rebounds, while Vandenberg tallied 14 points and eight
boards, and Barber finished with 12 points and five assists. NC State shot 50
percent from the floor and held EKU to 37.9-percent shooting.
Crawford's availability will certainly factor into the outcome in this one,
but even a healthy Crawford might not be enough to contain Warren and company
on the Wolfpack's home floor.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: NC State 79, Northwestern 68