Where: Dean Smith Center, Chapel Hill, NC
When: Wednesday, January 9th, 7:00 PM
Records: UNC 15-0, UNCA 11-3

UNC Asheville should not be taken lightly.

The Bulldogs and Heels both are coming off wins over the two major universities in South Carolina with UNCA surprising SCAR.  And, no Dave Odom always looks like his eyes are going to pop out of his head.  Anyway, UNCA also boasts the biggest man in college basketball, one Kenny George who is 7-7 and 360 pounds.  I was at the game against UNCA last season and George was not very good.  He was often two seconds slow reacting to everything around him and had trouble making it up and down the court more than twice in succession.  Everything I am reading says he is vastly improved and the stat sheet verifies it with a 16 point, 13 rebound performance versus SCAR.

UNC is coming off the huge emotionally draining win over Clemson which could bring the Heels out a little flat.  It will also be interesting to note how well Tyler Hansbrough plays considering he was visibly frustrated by the Clemson defense on Sunday and he now faces a player significantly bigger than him.  Hansbrough has not traditionally performed as well versus taller players.  Alex Stepheson is back in Chapel Hill and Roy was non-committal about his playing time citing concerns about his conditioning from being away from the team a week.  Stepheson could be a necessary cog to help Hansbrough deal with the behemoth in the lane.

I expect UNC to own the other matchups on the floor, especially at point guard.  This will be the last out of conference affair before UNC hosts NC State on Saturday to begin the rest of the ACC schedule in earnest.

UNC 90 UNCA 66


6 Responses to UNC vs UNCA

  1. Josh Bowling says:

    24 point differential. I hope that is the case THF. It would surpise me for us to hit 90, even at home. We have to be physically/mentally worn out from last game. My wife ate at Breadman’s yesterday, I believe, and Hansbrough was in there eating lunch with his girlfriend. She said he look beat and exhausted. But you know how game-time adrenaline gets going, maybe we can push ourselves beyond the dog-fight at little john. It will be interesting to see the improvements of that 8 footer, or roughly. I have always loved to see big-men play the game, dating back to Ralph Sampson and Moses Malone.

  2. Wayne says:

    I have always loved seeing big men play the game dating back to Wilt.

  3. Josh Bowling says:

    Sampson and Malone. Wilson, I guess I am putting my youth on display. I should have said I love big-men dating back to George Mikan.

  4. Howard says:

    One thing I noticed – the amateur that I am, I’m sure it isn’t anything new, but … – was that Clemson had a great defense against Hansbrough. Normally, it seems that when Tyler bumps into a big man facing him under the basket, he tends to turn to his right so he can make a move there, either going up or twisting around or waving some other magic wand. Clemson, however, was ready for this. They posted a second player against Tyler at the basket, waiting on Tyler’s right. So, when he did his normal turn to the right, it was right into the waiting hands of the second player.
    To me, that was the key. That’s what frustrated Tyler.
    I haven’t noticed other teams taking this approach against Tyler. Now that they have seen how effective it can be, perhaps they will adopt it. To our detriment, perhaps.
    The one thing about it is that by doing this, it frees up a Carolina player somewhere. Maybe we can figure out how to get that specific info to Tyler (surely he has time while struggling under the basket with big hands fighting for the ball and the crowd screaming, to pause and figure out where the free player is ….) Will be interesting to see how UNCA handles the big man.

  5. Tar Heel Fan says:

    The blueprint to handling Tyler was first written by Gonzaga last season when the fronted him and denied him the ball. Clemson had the athletes on the inside to stop UNC from making clean entry passes which limited him to only seven shots all night. On the times he did get the ball down there he either got fouled(which is one of the intents) or as you said they did a great job of disrupting his move to the basket. The issue with most teams in stopping Hansbrough is not knowing how to do it. At this point there is not a coach out there without at least some idea of how to stop Hansbrough. The issue for them is personnel needed to execute such a plan and also being able to coach or get the players to execute. There is also the fact UNC has other weapons on the floor you have to worry about as well.

  6. william says:

    The refs were allowing a lot of contact the other night. It looked like bumper pool down under.

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