NC State and North Carolina to face off in Saturday night rivalry matchup

The conference rivals will tip off at 5 p.m. in Chapel Hill.
NC State's Terquavion Smith (left) and UNC's Armando Bacot (right).
NC State's Terquavion Smith (left) and UNC's Armando Bacot (right).(AP)
Published: Jan. 21, 2023 at 2:08 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WBTV) - Longtime in-state rivals NC State and UNC will face off on Saturday night at the Dean Smith Center, with both teams looking to position themselves near the top of the conference standings as we near March.

The rivalry matchup comes as the Wolfpack seem to be hitting their stride, and as the Tar Heels continue to rebound from what many considered to be a slow start to the season.

NC State has won seven of its past eight games, vaulting itself from outside the projected NCAA Tournament field to the fringes of the AP Top 25 poll. Meanwhile, North Carolina has won 10 of its past 12 after losing four in a row prior to that stretch.

Both teams currently sit at 5-3 in the ACC as they near the midpoint of their conference schedule.

The Wolfpack boast one of the best scoring guards in the country in Terquavion Smith, who is averaging nearly 20 points per game, while the Tar Heels have the fifth-leading rebounder in the country in Armando Bacot.

Prior to Saturday’s matchup, NC State is projected to be a five-seed in the NCAA Tournament, according to ESPN’s Joe Lunardi. UNC is currently projected to be a nine-seed in the 64-team field.

North Carolina has won the past three matchups between the two schools, with NC State’s last victory coming in Raleigh in December 2020. NC State hasn’t won in Chapel Hill since January 2018.

UNC enters the game as 6.5-point favorites.

The rivalry showdown is set for a 5 p.m. tipoff on the ACC Network and streaming on the ESPN app.

Related: ‘Today we’re one’: Charlotte FC supporters hold vigil for Anton Walkes