Previewing Penn

Bernardini

With defending national player of the year Tyler Hansbrough listed as "extremely doubtful," the No. 1-ranked Tar Heels take the floor Saturday for their season-opener against Penn. Tip-off at the Smith Center is set for 4 p.m. and will be televised by Fox Sports South.

North Carolina (0-0) vs. Penn (0-0)
Chapel Hill, N.C. - Dean E. Smith Center
4 p.m., FSNS (Bob Rathbun, Mike Gminski)

Quotables

"[They're] an experienced team. I haven't seen anything about anybody with sprained ankles or anything like that, so maybe it's just happening to North Carolina right now… There was a guy in our lineup that had 29 that's not playing tomorrow. You'd like to have him against anybody, but I think Glen [Miller] has done a really nice job with his team." – UNC head coach Roy Williams

"I think they'll take good shots and I think they'll attack us. The last two years they've tried to attack us back. I don't like the idea of a guy coming back that got 26 against us. Danny [Green] better have his defensive shoes on." – Williams

PREGAME NOTES

A Return of Wealth: Penn returns four starters and 12 letter winners from a team that posted a 13-18 (8-6 Ivy League) record to finish third in its conference standings. Ten Quakers started at least one game last year, and another 10 contributed at least one double-digit scoring game. Penn was picked second in the Ivy League's preseason media poll, behind defending league champion Cornell, who returns all five starters.

Sophomore Sensation: Penn's leading returning scorer is Tyler Bernardini (12.9 ppg), who earned distinction as the Ivy League and Philadelphia Big 5 Rookie of the Year last season. In 2007-08, the Carlsbad, Calif. product scored more points than any other freshman in Penn men's basketball history, including knocking down 26 against the Tar Heels last December.

Far and Away:The Quakers' recruiting base extends far beyond the borders of the Northeast. Penn's roster boasts players from 10 different states, ranging from California to Kentucky to Massachusetts, while also pulling one student-athlete from Freeport, The Bahamas and another from Taby, Sweden.

Little Known Fact: Saturday's contest features the second and eighth most-winningest programs among NCAA Division I members. North Carolina is second with 1,950 wins, while the Quakers own 1,647 victories (one ahead of UCLA and 12 in front of Indiana).

Troubling Stat:: Under Miller's guidance, the Quakers have lost 18 of 19 games when their opponents score 80 or more points. North Carolina averaged 88.6 points per contest last season.

Last Meeting: North Carolina defeated Penn, 106-71, on Dec. 4, 2007 at the Palestra. The Tar heels shot 57.3 percent from the floor, as Tyler Hansbrough (29 points, 10 rebounds) and Deon Thompson (12 points, 10 rebounds) proved too strong in the post for the Quakers..

Series History: North Carolina leads the all-time series with Penn, 5-2. The Tar Heels beat the Quakers in Chapel Hill two seasons ago before last year's victory in Philadelphia.

Background
Location: Philadelphia, Pa.
Enrollment: 10,163
Conference: Ivy League
Nickname: Quakers
Colors: Red & Blue
Head Coach: Glen Miller 
Record at UP: 35-27
Last Year: 13-18 (8-6) 

Projected Starters:
 1 Zack Rosen (6-1, 175, Fr.) – Colonia (N.J.) St. Benedict's Prep
22 Harrison Gaines (6-0, 170, So.) – 6.7 ppg, 3.6 apg
 3 Tyler Bernardini (6-6, 205, Sr.) - 12.9 ppg, 2.5 rpg
24 Jack Eggleston (6-8, 215, So.) – 8.0 ppg, 4.2 rpg
33 Cameron Lewis (6-8, 225, Sr.) - 3.2 ppg, 2.5 rpg

Key Reserves:
13 Andreas Schreiber (6-9, 245, Jr.) – 5.5 ppg, 3.9 rpg
15 Kevin Egee (6-3, 175, Sr.) – 5.1 ppg
41 Justin Reilly (6-8, 230, Jr.) – 5.1 ppg, 2.2 rpg

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