Previewing Georgia Tech

Lawal

North Carolina has won two of its last nine ACC games, and both wins came against cellar dweller N.C. State. Georgia Tech will be a far tougher task for the hobbled Heels. Tip-off at Alexander Memorial Coliseum is set for 9 p.m. and will be televised by Raycom.

North Carolina (14-11, 3-7) vs. Georgia Tech (17-8, 5-6)
Atlanta, Ga. -- Alexander Memorial Coliseum
9:00 p.m. Raycome (Bob Rathbun, Mike Gminski)

Quotables

"I think having that information will help Larry [Drew]. I think the biggest thing that will help Larry is if we don't turn it over so many times in the first half. I think that was crucial for how poorly we played in the first half." – UNC head coach Roy Williams on his point guard having already faced Iman Shumpert (30 points) this season

"You've got to make adjustments. Iman has just got to get himself back going, that's all. We know he's good enough. He played a great game against N.C. State Just the last two games he hasn't been himself." – Georgia Tech head coach Paul Hewitt on playing Moe Miller more minutes at guard after Shumpert's recent struggles (six points on 2-of-14 shooting in last two outings)

PREGAME NOTES

Since the Last Time We Met… Georgia Tech enters Tuesday night's contest with a 17-8 (5-6 ACC). The Yellow Jackets have lost four of their last seven ACC games since defeating North Carolina, 73-71, on Jan. 16. Five of the program's conference outings have been decided by two points or less.

A Trio of Bigs: The Yellow Jackets' strength in nonconference play was their triumvirate of post players in Gani Lawal, Derrick Favors and Zachery Peacock, and things have stayed the same in league play. Lawal is averaging 12.1 points on 47.2 percent shooting and 9.4 rebounds per game, while Favors is contributing 9.7 points on 61.3 percent shooting and 8.3 rebounds per contest. Add in 6-foot-8 senior Zachery Peacock (10.3 ppg, 3.5 rpg) off the bench and that trio is accounting for 46.4 percent of the program's scoring and 54.4 percent of its rebounds.

Three's Company: The Yellow Jackets rank third in conference play in both field goal percentage (43.1) and field goal percentage defense (39.7). Georgia Tech also holds down the No. 3 spot in both steals (7.4) and offensive rebounds (14.3).

RPI Update: Despite a losing record in league play, the Yellow Jackets are in solid position to earn a NCAA Tournament bid provided they win a couple of more games down the stretch. The NCAA currently ranks Georgia Tech 29th in its most recent RPI standings, good for third in the ACC. Paul Hewitt's club has played 15 games against top-100 programs, winning seven of those contests.

Home and Away: Georgia Tech starts two sophomores and two freshmen, and that youth is glaring when looking at the conference schedule. The Yellow Jackets are 4-1 in Atlanta, but own a 1-5 record away from home. The program's one road victory occurred at Chapel Hill one month ago.

Not Taking Advantage of Charity: Georgia Tech ranks dead last in ACC play in free throw shooting percentage, knocking down just 61.0 percent (133-of-218) of its freebies.

Random Stat of the Day: Mfon Udofia is the fifth freshman point guard to start during Hewitt's 10-year run in Atlanta. The Yellow Jackets have started five different points over the last four seasons and have not had a senior running the point since Tony Akins in 2002.

Last Meeting: Georgia Tech defeated the Tar Heels, 73-71, at the Smith Center on Jan. 16. Zachery Peacock scored in the post with 25.7 seconds remaining to secure the victory after the Yellow Jackets blew a 20-point first-half lead. Iman Shumpert paced Tech with 30 points on 10-of-17 shooting, while Will Graves led UNC with 24 points.

Series History: North Carolina leads the all-time series with the Yellow Jackets, 60-21. The Tar Heels have won 19 of the last 27 meetings.

Projected Starters:
00 Mfon Udofia (6-2, 187, Fr.) – 7.6 ppg, 2.4 apg
1 Iman Shumpert (6-5, 209, So.) – 9.3 ppg, 4.1 apg
13 D'Andre Bell (6-6, 222, Sr.) – 6.3 ppg, 2.4 rpg
31 Gani Lawal (6-9, 234, Jr.) – 14.2 ppg, 9.4 rpg
14 Derrick Favors (6-10, 246, Fr.) – 11.0 ppg, 8.1 rpg

Top Reserves:
35 Zach Peacock (6-8, 235, Sr.) – 9.6 ppg, 4.0 rpg
11 Brian Oliver (6-6, 220, Fr.) – 7.9 ppg, 2.0 rpg 41 Glen Rice, Jr. (6-5, 195, Fr.) – 4.5 ppg, 2.3 rpg
3 Moe Miller (6-2, 189, Jr.) – 3.3 ppg, 2.2 apg

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