So, UNC has size and rebounds well.
North Carolina leads the ACC in offensive rebounds (15.1 per game), defensive rebounds (27.7 per game) and total rebounds (42.8 per game). North Carolina also is first in rebounding margin (plus-9.7).
It’s no coincidence that the Tar Heels will be one of the tallest teams the Panthers will play this season, featuring six players 6 feet 8 or taller.
Dixon said there is no secret to what he has emphasized in practices leading up to this game. He said if the Panthers don’t rebound well, they will not win.
“We have made it very clear to our players that this is a strength of theirs,” Dixon said. “They are a very good rebounding team, and we are coming off a game in which we got outrebounded. We did a lot of drills at practice that we normally do when we don’t get it done on the glass.
“We have talked about it, and we have made it very clear that we need to match their size and their intensity in going up and getting rebounds.”
Oh, and a top 3-point shooters in the country.
They also have to limit point guard Marcus Paige, North Carolina’s leading scorer.
Paige is one of the top 3-point shooters in the ACC — seventh in 3-point shooting percentage and sixth in made 3-pointers per game — but is streaky. Even when he misses, though, North Carolina’s rebounding ability allows the Tar Heels to turn his missed shots into second-chance scoring opportunities.
What could go wrong?