Boston College vs. NC State: Preview & Prediction

A look at tonight's game between the Wolfpack and Eagles
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Boston College (2-5) will be looking for their first ACC win of the season on Wednesday as they take on the NC State Wolfpack (5-1). For the Eagles they are going to try and grab their first ACC win of the season, but the Wolfpack are the cream of the crop this year in the ACC. Most recently the NC State defeated their arch rivals UNC in a close 79-76 win. 

Time: 8:00 pm
Where: Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill
TV: ACC Network
Radio: WEEI 850 (TuneIn App)
Current Line: NC State (-9.5)
ESPN Matchup Predictor: NC State has an 85.8% chance of winning this game
Series History: Tonight's matchup is the 26th matchup between the two schools, with NC State holding a narrow 13-12 lead in the series. Last season the Eagles defeated the Wolfpack 71-68. 

Storyline of the Game: Can Boston College hang with a solid team like the Wolfpack or will this be the Syracuse game all over again?

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Player to Watch: Jericole Hellems, Forward

Boston College has struggled when teams have athletic forwards/wings that can shoot from all over the court. Hellems a 6-7 forward can do exactly that. He leads the all starters on the Wolfpack in three point shooting percentage, and is second on the team in points per game. He's a facilitator as well, averaging 2.5 rebounds a game, and could be a matchup problem all game for the Eagles.

Three Keys to the Game:

1. Avoid long droughts: NC State is an excellent defensive team, only allowing 62 points per game, and grabbing 11 steals. This plays right in to one of BC's biggest problems--sloppy play. If BC goes out there and turns the ball over and takes low percentage shots, this game is going to slip away from them quickly. 

2. Get Jay Heath going: It seems like where Heath goes, this team goes as well. Against Syracuse he had a miserable game on both ends of the floor. He is vital to this team, he needs to get good looks and help spread out the offense. If he is chucking poor shots, could be a long game. 

3. Keep up the defensive energy. Against Maine we saw a completely different Boston College team defensively in the first half. They played with a fire, and were challenging every shot. Now, I know, it's Maine, but BC needs that determination against NC State too. Get back to playing inspired basketball, and maybe, just maybe they can pull off the upset. 

AJ's Fearless Prediction: NC State is a solid team on both ends of the floor, but their defense is what I think will be the biggest problem tonight for the Eagles. Expect another long drought where the wheels fall off, and NC State will take advantage of it to build a huge lead. The spread is about ten, but I think the Wolfpack will easily cover that, while Boston College will fall to 0-2 in the conference. NC State 76 Boston College 63