NC State Wolfpack vs. Charleston Southern Buccaneers Pick & Prediction NOVEMBER 17th 2023

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North Carolina State can build upon lots of positives after two games this season.

The Wolfpack will look for more of that when Charleston Southern visits for Friday night’s game in Raleigh, N.C.

“I say we’re coming,” NC State guard Jayden Taylor said. “We are just going to keep working and control what we can control, and hopefully we win.” The Wolfpack (2-0) understand that there’s more that needs to be done, so the goal is to take advantage of these nonconference games.

“In our small sample size, we’re growing and getting better,” coach Kevin Keatts said. “I consider this team having eight different guys that can start on any night. … I think our knowledge of basketball has gotten better. We are completely taking care of the basketball, which I really, really like.”

Charleston Southern (2-1) lost its only game against a Division I opponent, falling to North Florida. This will be the first road game for the Buccaneers, who will their next three away from home as well.

There are more stern tests ahead for coach Barclay Radebaugh’s team.

“We are excited about this group,” Radebaugh said. “Our team made some significant strides this summer. We are much bigger on the perimeter. Our incoming class has meshed very well with our returners. I have been impressed with the competitiveness of our group, their willingness to be coached, their focus on having a team-first attitude and their desire to defend and rebound at a high level.”

RJ Johnson is averaging a team-leading 19.3 points per game for the Buccaneers, who were picked eighth among nine teams in the Big South Conference preseason poll.

Keatts will like having an opponent with established offensive credentials because it should cause his team to be attentive defensively.

“We’re growing defensively as a group, and we are starting to trust each other,” he said.

For the Wolfpack, Taylor, a junior, racked up 22 points on Nov. 10 against Abilene Christian, coming within two points of his career high.

–Field Level Media

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