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July 2, 2013
NC State coach Mark Gottfried essentially has a brand new team next year and emphasized outside expectations will be considerably lower.
Gottfried said Duke will be the team to beat thanks to freshman forward Jabari Parker and Mississippi State transfer Rodney Hood, a redshirt sophomore, along with two other returning starters.
The Wolfpack are still a mystery, but the goal of making the NCAA Tournament still remains. The first steps will be taken this summer. Gottfried said fifth-year senior center Jordan Vandenberg has lost 20 pounds and will need to shed another 15 by the start of the season. Incoming freshman center BeeJay Anya is also about to start a weight-loss plan.
T.J. Warren, a sophomore who can also play power forward, LSU transfer Ralston Turner, a redshirt junior, and junior college transfer Desmond Lee - who is already being compared to past or current NBA stars Steve Francis and Dion Waiters by former NCSU star Julius Hodge - will fortify the two wing positions. Incoming freshman Anthony Barber could also end up playing both guard spots.
Freshman post players Kyle Washington and Lennard Freeman also could play either power forward or center, but that largely depends on how Vandenberg and Anya do.
Finding new leaders will be another offseason chore. The Wolfpack have struggled in having a defined team captain since Engin Atsur graduated in 2006. Sophomore point guard Tyler Lewis and Turner have been self starters this spring, along with Warren and Vandenberg, as the only scholarship players on campus.
Click below to listen to Gottfried's press conference:
N.C. State NEWS