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Preview: Louisville Cardinals vs. NC State Wolfpack

The Cardinals kick off their ACC Tournament run with a showdown against the Wolfpack.

Louisville Cardinals (8-23, 3-17 ACC) vs. NC State Wolfpack (17-14, 9-11 ACC)

- Tipoff: Tuesday, March 12 at 4:30 p.m. EST
- Location: Capital One Area in Washington, D.C.
- How To Watch: ACC Network
- How To Listen: 93.9 FM
- Betting Favorite: NC State -9.0
- All-Time Series: Louisville leads 14-13
- Last Meeting: NC State won 89-83 on Jan. 13, 2024 (KFC Yum! Center - Louisville, Ky.)

Projected Starting Lineups


  • G Skyy Clark (6-3, 205, So.)
  • G Tre White (6-7, 205, So.)
  • G/F Mike James (6-5, 200, R-So.)
  • F Kaleb Glenn (6-6, 205, Fr.)
  • F Brandon Huntley-Hatfield (6-10, 240, Jr.)

NC State

  • G D.J. Horne (6-2, 180, Gr.)
  • G Michael O'Connell (6-2, 195, Gr.)
  • G Casey Morsell (6-3, 200, Gr.)
  • G Jayden Taylor (6-4, 195, Jr.)
  • F D.J. Burns Jr. (6-9, 275, Gr.)


See how the Cardinals stack up against the Wolfpack, and who the statistical models favor: Tale of The Tape, Predictions: Louisville vs. NC State

Game Notes


  • Last time out: Louisville in their regular season finale, dropping a 67-61 decision to Boston College to extend their losing streak to seven.
  • KEY FIRST HALF RUN: Louisville scored the first four points of the game before Boston College took the lead with a 15-1 run that elapsed 4:38. The Cardinals went on a 9-0 run to get within five with 1:32 to go. The Eagles led 41-31 at halftime.
  • KEY SECOND HALF RUN: Boston College continued to lead throughout the second half, using a 10-0 run to push its lead as high as 16. The Cardinals chipped away at the Eagles’ lead in the final minutes of regulation but wouldn’t come any closer than six points. Louisville outscored Boston College 30-26 in the second half.
  • UofL shot 17 of 51 (33.3%) from the field, 4 of 17 (23.5%) from 3-point range and 23 of 28 (82.1%) from the free-throw line.
  • Of Louisville’s 61 total points, 28 were scored off the bench by Ty-Laur Johnson (9), Kaleb Glenn (9), Danilo Jovanovich (4), Curtis Williams (3) and Tre White (3). The Cardinals’ 28 bench points doubled the Eagles’ 14.
  • Brandon Huntley-Hatfield led the Cardinals in scoring with 14 points on 5 of 9 shooting. He also added nine boards, two steals and one assist.
  • Skyy Clark did it all with five assists, three rebounds and two steals, while adding 11 points in 32 minutes.
  • Coming in off the bench, Kaleb Glenn recorded nine points and five rebounds in 21 minutes.
  • Since joining Conference USA in 1995-96, Louisville is 17-9 in its first conference tournament game across C-USA, the Big East, the American and the ACC. Louisville is 3-7 overall in the ACC Tournament since joining the league.
  • Over the last 10 games, junior forward Brandon Huntley-Hatfield is averaging 17.0 points and 8.2 rebounds while shooting 58.6% from the field (65 of 111). He has eight double-doubles this season after recording just two double-doubles in the first 68 games of his career.
  • Guard Ty-Laur Johnson’s 108 assists are the fourth-most ever by a Louisville freshman. He recently passed current team Video Coordinator Reece Gaines (1999-00) and trails only LaBradford Smith (156, 1987-88), Jason Osborne (141, 1993-94) – the father of senior forward JJ Traynor – and DeJuan Wheat (109, 1993-94). Over the last nine games, he’s averaging 10.9 points, 4.9 assists and 2.0 steals per outing.
  • While the Cardinals have been outscored by 101 points across their last 11 games, they’ve outscored their opponents by 10 with Zan Payne on the court over that span. Payne has scored 10 of his 15 points this season in the last two games, while going 3-for-4 from 3-point range – the first long-range makes of his six-year college career.
  • Brandon Huntley-Hatfield is 1 of 6 Louisville players since 1992 to total at least 396 points and 262 rebounds in a season, joining Raymond Spalding (2017-18), Montrezl Harrell (2013-14, ‘14-15), Earl Clark (2008-09), Terrence Williams (2008-09), and Clifford Rozier (1992-93, ‘93-94).

NC State

  • NC State dropped its fourth straight game, falling to Pitt, 81-73, in its regular season finale on Saturday night at Petersen Events Center. NC State led for a majority of the first 12 minutes as Pitt didn’t take its first lead until 7:21 remained in the first half, but a 16-3 Panthers run in the latter part of the opening half allowed Pitt to take a 39-29 lead into halftime. After the Pack opened the second half with a three-pointer, Pitt went on a 10-0 run to take its largest lead of the game, 49-32, with 16:55 to play. The lead stayed in double digits until an 11-0 NC State run brought the Pack within three, 70-67, with 2:26 to go. NC State could get no closer though as Pitt scored the next five points to put the game out of reach.
  • Jayden Taylor scored a career-high 28 points on 9-of-15 shooting, including 5-of-10 from three-point range on Saturday night at Pitt. Taylor has now scored 20 or more points in three of his last four games. He is averaging 19.0 points per game in the last four games and is shooting 59.5 percent (22-of-37) from the field, including 60.9 percent (14-of-23) from three-point range.
  • Junior forward Mohamed Diarra led NC State in rebounding for the fifth straight game. He has now led the Pack in rebounding in seven of the last eight games and 11 of the last 15 overall. In the last eight games, Diarra is averaging just shy of a double-double with averages of 8.8 points and 9.3 rebounds per game. He is shooting 25-of-46 (54.3%) from the field, including 11-of-23 (47.8%) from three-point range. He finished the regular season fifth in conference action, averaging 8.0 rebounds per game in 20 ACC contests.
  • DJ Horne left the Pitt game at the under-8 media timeout on Saturday night. Despite being limited to 12 minutes and just three points, Horne finished with an average of 18.1 points per game in conference action. For the season, Horne has made 88 three-pointers (fourth-most in ACC) and leads all players in the ACC in three-point field goal percentage at 42.9 percent.
  • Mohamed Diarra has made a three-pointer in seven of the last eight games and is 11-of-23 (47.8%) from downtown in the last eight outings. In the first 23 games of the season, Diarra only made five three-pointers and only attempted 21 three-pointers total in that span.
  • NC State has had more turnovers than its opponents in four consecutive games. The Pack has been one of the nation’s best in turnover margin under head coach Kevin Keatts. Last season, NC State ranked 15th in the NCAA in turnover margin and the Pack still ranks 32nd this season in turnover margin, but has a -14 turnover margin in the last four games. This season, NC State is 15-5 when it has fewer turnovers than its opponent, but is 2-9 when it has the same number or more turnovers than its opponent.
  • In the last two games, Duke and Pitt have both only turned it over five times. The five turnovers tie for the fewest for an NC State opponent this season.
  • Hitting the offensive glass: Ben Middlebrooks has grabbed 19 offensive rebounds (3.2 per game) in the last six games. He’s shooting 66.7 percent from the field (10-of-15) and is averaging 6.3 points & 5.5 rebounds per game in an average of 17 minutes per game in the last six games.
  • NC State is on pace this season to break a school record it set last season for fewest turnovers in a season. This season NC State has 298 total turnovers and is averaging 9.6 turnovers per game to rank 14th in the NCAA. The Pack has had single digit turnovers in 17 of 31 games this season. The Pack is 12-5 this season when it has fewer than 10 turnovers in a game.
  • Casey Morsell started his 60th consecutive game on Jan. 3 when the Pack visited Notre Dame. The 60 consecutive starts broke a tie with former teammate Terquavion Smith as Morsell’s starting streak is now the longest of any player in the Kevin Keatts era.
  • Grad guard DJ Horne has made three or more three-pointers in 10 of his last 13 games. The Raleigh native now ranks eighth on the program’s single season three-point chart.

(Photo of Brandon Huntley-Hatfield: Jared Anderson - Louisville Report)

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