NC State will to travel New York's Madison Square Garden on Dec. 4 for a contest against Connecticut in the 18th-annual Jimmy V Classic, a fundraiser for the V Foundation For Cancer Research, the ESPN-led charity that was started by former Wolfpack coach Jim Valvano.
NC State's only previous appearance in the event, which caps off ESPN's annual "V Week," was on Dec. 17, 2002, when the Herb Sendek-led Wolfpack fell to Gonzaga 69-60 at Continental Arena at the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, N.J.
The previously unbeaten Pack got a career-high 22 points from Scooter Sherrill and 14 from Julius Hodge. State was cold from the field all night, missing 19 straight shots at the end of the first half and hitting just 26.6 percent from the field on the night. Gonzaga turned its 61-35 rebounding advantage into 25 second-chance points on its way to the win.
Pack Wear To Valvano Inspired Jersey At Jimmy V
To celebrate the spirit and passion of former NC State head coach Jim Valvano, the Wolfpack will wear specially designed jerseys when it faces Connecticut at the 18th annual Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday, Dec. 4.
The red road jersey features a net design around the collar and shoulders, reminiscent of Valvano wearing the nets following his "Cardiac Pack's" dramatic run to the 1983 national championship.
On the back of each jersey is Valvano's famous line of "Don't Ever Give Up," first heard during a pre-game speech on Feb. 21, 1993, prior to NC State's game with Duke at Reynolds Coliseum in which he served as the color analyst on the ABC broadcast. Also highlighting the jersey will be the V Foundation's signature V logo.
The Connecticut Series
This is the fifth overall meeting between NC State and Connecticut in the series that dates back to the 1990-91 season.
The Pack won the initial meeting, 60-59, in Storrs. The Huskies then captured the rematch during the 1992-93 season, 81-74, played at Reynolds Coliseum.
The last two contests between the programs have come in the NCAA Tournament with each taking a victory.
UConn won a second-round contest, 77-74, in 2002. The Pack won the last meeting in the 2005 NCAA Tournament, 65-62.
Playing In The Big Apple
NC State's history of playing in special events in New York City dates back to the first season of legendary coach Everett Case. Under his direction, Case guided the Pack to the 1947 NIT, where it posted a 2-1 record with an opening win over St. John's (61-55) followed by a semifinal loss to Kentucky (60-42) and victory over West Virginia (64-52) in the third place game.
In addition to playing in NIT games, NC State has also participated in NCAA Tournament and ECAC Holiday Festival contests in New York City. Overall, NC State's record is 18-13 in special event games in New York City. Add in games played against schools in the Metro area that record improves at 23-16.
This is State's first time playing in New York City since participating in the 2004 ECAC Holiday Festival.
Freshmen Lead The Way
Freshmen T.J. Warren, Rodney Purvis and Tyler Lewis are making significant contributions in their first season at NC State.
Warren is leading the team in scoring, averaging 15.3 points per game in a reserve role. He is shooting .702 (40-for-57) and averaging 3.8 rebounds per contest.
Purvis is averaging 10.0 points per contest, while shooting .488 (20-for-41)from the field. He is shooting .556 (10-of-18) from three-point range.
While Lewis hasn't been scoring at quite the same clip, he has been a solid back-up to Lorenzo Brown at the point guard spot. He averaging 14.5 minutes per game with 12 assists on the year.
Sharing The Wealth
The Pack has evenly shared the scoring load this season with six players averaging double figures. In addition to top scorer, freshman T.J. Warren, senior Richard Howell is averaging 14.2 points per contest.
Junior C.J. Leslie is contributing 11.7 ppg, while senior Scott Wood and junior Lorenzo Brown are both averaging 10.5 a game.
Freshman Rodney Purvis is adding 10.0 per contest.
The Higher, The Better
In the Wolfpack's four wins, it is averaging 86.2 points per game and shooting .561 (125-of-223) from the field.
Twice NC State topped the 90-point barrier, scoring a season-high 97 points in the opener versus Miami of Ohio and posting 94 against UMass in the Puerto Rico Tip-Off.
In its Miami (Ohio) victory, the Pack shot a season best .614 (35-of-57) from the floor. In its two losses, NC State is averaging 64.0 points per game and shooting .458 (54-of-118) from the field.
In five of six contests this season, the Wolfpack has shot .500 or better.
The Pack has outscored its opposition, 254-179, in the paint this season. That's 42 points per game for NC State coming off of shots around the rim, while its opponents are scoring 30 points a contest in the lane, giving the Pack a 12-point advantage.
That equates to .537 of the Wolfpack's scoring production coming from in the post, compared to .421 of the scoring output for its opponents.
A Sign Of Things to Come
Through his first six games in an NC State uniform have been fairly solid for T.J. Warren. He is the first freshman to lead the Pack in scoring (15.3 ppg) through its first six contests since J.J. Hickson did so in the 2007-08 season. Warren also notches 3.8 rebounds per outing. This first six games as a member of the Wolfpack, Hickson averaged 18.5 points per contest and hauled in 8.3 rebounds per game as well.
Hickson's numbers were boosted by him scoring 31 points in his NC State debut. Hickson finished that season as State's leading scorer, averaging 14.8 points a game.
Warren is the highest ranking freshman in scoring average (7th) in the ACC.
Senior Richard Howell and freshman T.J. Warren are one and two in the ACC statistics in field goal percentage. Howell is knocking down shots at a league-best .739 clip, while Warren is second at .702.
Howell's field goal percentage is No.1 nationally with Warren ranked No. 6 among the country's top shooters.
Warren Gets The Nod
Freshman T.J. Warren was rewarded for his hard work in practice with his first career start against Michigan.
The Pack's coaching staff's decision paid off with Warren scoring a team-high 18 points on 8-of-10 (.800) shooting from the field.
Lending A Helping Hand
Twice this season, junior Lorenzo Brown has recorded double digits in assists, versus Michigan and Massachusetts.
All of last season, Brown had two peformances where he accomplished this feat, including a career best 13 in the Pack's loss to Syracuse. Against the Orange, he also registered his first career double-double, adding 10 points.
Against UMass this year, Brown posted his second career double-double by scoring 11 points to go with his assist tally.