Duke (26-4, 13-4 ACC) at North Carolina (22-8, 12-5 ACC)
In his last four games, Reggie Bullock is averaging 18.3 points, 11.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals with only three turnovers.
Date: Saturday, March 9, 2013
Tipoff: 9 p.m.
North Carolina (22-8, 12-5 Atlantic Coast Conference) will try to tie for second place in the ACC standings and win its 13th conference game of the season when it hosts Duke (26-4, 13-4 ACC) on Saturday night in the Smith Center. The game will tip off just after 9 p.m.
Carolina is 12-5 in ACC play this season, third in the conference behind Miami (14-3) and Duke (13-4) entering this weekend’s action. NC State is fourth at 11-6.
The Tar Heels have won six consecutive games, most recently winning at Maryland on Wednesday night. UNC has gone 12-3 since starting ACC play 0-2 in early January.
Carolina is 6-1 in the seven games started by sophomore P.J. Hairston since the Tar Heels went to a smaller starting lineup of Hairston, Dexter Strickland, Marcus Paige, Reggie Bullock and James Michael McAdoo on Feb. 13 at Duke.
The Blue Devils are coming off an 85-57 win over Virginia Tech on Tuesday night in Durham. Duke has won four of its last five outings.
The last time an unranked Carolina team beat a ranked Duke team was exactly 10 years ago, on March 9, 2003, in Chapel Hill.
Tar Heels tidbits
Carolina has won three consecutive ACC road games and five straight games overall, all by nine or more points. UNC is the only team in the ACC this season to accomplish either feat.
In his last four games, Reggie Bullock is averaging 18.3 points, 11.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals with only three turnovers. In that span, he's shot 26 for 41 (.634) overall and 14 for 27 from three-point range (.519).
Carolina has won 40 of its last 49 regular season ACC games (since the start of the 2010-11 season). Carolina has won six games in a row, its longest win streak of the season.
Dexter Strickland leads the ACC in assist/turnover ratio in all games (3.4) and in ACC games only (4.2). Strickland had six assists and zero turnovers in the win at Maryland, playing for the third time in five games without a miscue. Strickland has 31 assists and
just three turnovers in the last six games, all Carolina wins.
The Tar Heels have committed only 58 turnovers in the last six games, an average
of 9.7 per game.
After Saturday’s game, Carolina will begin play in the ACC Tournament on Friday in Greensboro. Carolina (12-5) will be either the No. 3 or No. 4 seed and has a bye to Friday’s quarterfinal round. N.C. State (11-6 prior to its 2 p.m. game on Saturday at Florida State) also could be the No. 3 or No. 4 seed.
If Carolina wins on Saturday night, it will tie Duke for second place in the conference and be the No. 3 seed. The Blue Devils would take the No. 2 seed based on a tiebreaker (Duke split with top seed Miami this season and Carolina went 0-2 against the Hurricanes). UNC would play at approximately 9:30 p.m. on Friday against the winner of Thursday’s 6-11 game.
If NC State loses at Florida State on Saturday afternoon, then Carolina is the No. 3 seed no matter what happens on Saturday night.
If Carolina loses and NC State wins on Saturday, then the two teams would tie for third place and NCSU would be the No. 3 seed (based on its win over Duke). Carolina would be the No. 4 seed and play at approximately 2:30 p.m. on Friday against the winner of Thursday’s 5-12 game.
The Duke series
Carolina leads the all-time series with Duke, 132-103. Duke won the last meeting, a 73-68 decision in Durham on Feb. 13 of this season.
Duke has won six of the last eight meetings in the series after UNC previously had won six of seven.
The Tar Heels are 7-2 under Roy Williams in all second meetings of a season with the Blue Devils. Carolina has won six of the last seven meetings in the traditional regular season finale between the two schools.
UNC is 60-33 against Duke in Chapel Hill and 15-12 in the Smith Center. The Blue Devils have won nine of the last 14 in the series in Chapel Hill. The Tar Heel wins in that span were in 2002-03, 2004-05, 2006-07, 2008-09 and 2010-11.
Head coach Roy Williams is 4-5 against Duke in games played in the Smith Center.
Duke has shot 50 percent from the floor against UNC just once in 20 games against Carolina in the Roy Williams era (shooting exactly 50.0 percent in the 2011 ACC final). Carolina is 39-38 against Duke since Mike Krzyzewski became the Blue Devil head coach.
Carolina and Duke have accounted for 36 of the ACC’s 59 Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament championships, including 19 by Duke and 17 by UNC.