STANFORD CARDINAL (7-3)
at NORTH CAROLINA STATE WOLFPACK (7-2)
PNC Arena – Raleigh, NC
Tip-off: Tuesday, 9:00 p.m. ET
Line: NC State -6.5, Total: 143
Stanford will be tested flying across the country to take on a talented, but underperforming, No. 25 NC State squad in Raleigh on Tuesday night.
The Wolfpack’s problem has not been the offense, which is shooting 52.7% from the field, the best rate in the nation. Freshman TJ Warren has led that effort with an incredible 69.1% FG, including 64% from deep, the best rate of any freshman in the nation. The Cardinal, on the other hand, have been terrible from the field (39.8% FG) with key players such as Chasson Randle (35.8% FG, 21.6% 3-pt FG) struggling to make buckets.
Can the Wolfpack win convincingly on Tuesday night? For the answer, connect to College Basketball Best Bets for all the Expert picks throughout the entire 2012-13 season. The StatFox experts have been sizzling in the past four days, going a collective 21-7 ATS (75%) from Friday through Monday. StatFox Dave is 8-1 ATS and StatFox Scott is 6-1 ATS over this stretch. The experts now have a collective 53.4% ATS mark (135-118-6) in college basketball Best Bets for the season, led by StatFox Gary, who is 57.4% ATS (27-20) for the season, while Dave is at 56% ATS (50-40-2) on the year. StatFox Brian's 4-1 ATS run put him at 51% ATS (30-29-2) for the season.
Six-foot-10 PF Dwight Powell (14.8 PPG, 6.9 RPG) is Stanford’s top scorer, though he is a better shooter than he is a rebounder, where he will have to step up against C.J. Leslie and Richard Howell who combined for 17.3 RPG for NC State. Powell has drastically improved in his junior season however, making 56.3% of his field goals, up more than 10% from last season. Josh Huestis (8.5 PPG, 8.2 RPG) joins him in the post and he is a strong rebounder despite being just 6-foot-7. Chasson Randle (14.4 PPG) is truly the X-factor of this team, putting points on the board despite his inefficiency from the field. He is coming off a 4-of-13 shooting performance against UC Davis, and things won’t get easier for him against this athletic NC State squad.
Warren has been the biggest surprise for the Wolfpack, but the team is also led by three seniors in Howell, Leslie and Lorenzo Brown. Howell (14.1 PPG, 9.6 RPG) is averaging nearly a double-double, while Leslie (12.9 PPG, 7.7 RPG) has also been good offensively, despite his 3.0 TOPG. He's averaging 15.2 PPG and 9.0 RPG over his past five games. Brown (11.7 PPG, 6.0 APG) is a strong, pass-first point guard but has also struggled with sloppy ball handling with 3.8 TOPG. Scott Wood (9.3 PPG) adds a sharp-shooting presence from the perimeter. Even though he’s shooting just 39.7% from the field this season, he’s hitting 40.4% of his shots from deep, averaging 2.1 threes per game. And as Rodney Purvis (9.8 PPG on 44% FG) continues to improve—he’s coming off back-to-back double-digit scoring performances—this team should only get better throughout the season.