CBB Preview: North Carolina at Clemson

North Carolina at Clemson

North Carolina hopes to continue its dominance over Clemson when the 20th-ranked Tigers host the No. 17 Tar Heels on Tuesday. The Tar Heels have won 10 straight against the Tigers dating to 2010, including an 87-79 home victory on Jan. 16.

Clemson is 11-0 at home but North Carolina has won in its last four trips to Littlejohn Coliseum. The Tigers have split their last six games and are coming off a 72-70 win at Georgia Tech on Sunday. North Carolina is trying to avoid its first three-game losing streak since 2014. The Tar Heels followed last Monday’s 80-69 loss at Virginia Tech with a 95-91 overtime loss to North Carolina State on Saturday.

TV: 7 p.m. ET, ESPN

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ABOUT NORTH CAROLINA (16-6, 5-4 ACC): The Tar Heels aren’t the most efficient team at the offensive end, but they can push the pace and have several proven scorers with forward Luke Maye (18.6 points, 10.5 rebounds) and guard Joel Berry II (17 points) leading the way. Forward Kenny Williams (11.2 points) has struggled to get involved on offense recently, scoring in double figures in only one of the past five games. The Tar Heels have struggled a bit at the defensive end, especially on the perimeter – allowing 10.2 3-pointers per game, which is on pace for the most in program history.

ABOUT CLEMSON (17-4, 6-3): The Tigers have taken on a different dynamic since losing forward Donte Grantham (14.2 points, 6.9 rebounds) for the season, taking on a more guard-oriented approach built around Marcquise Reed (15.4 points), Gabe DeVoe (12.3 points) and Shelton Mitchell (12 points, 4.1 assists). DeVoe scored a career-high 25 points against Georgia Tech, and Reed dished out 11 assists and had three steals. The Tigers still have a strong big man in Elijah Thomas (10.5 points, 7.4 rebounds), but he was limited to 19 minutes before fouling out against the Yellow Jackets and could be in for more of the same without Grantham to help in the post.

TIP-INS

1. North Carolina has won 16 of 18 meetings when both teams are ranked in the Top 25.

2. Clemson is 5-1 in games decided by five points or fewer or in overtime.

3. The Tar Heels lead the nation in rebounds per game (43.4) and are second in rebound margin (11.7).

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