NC State junior center Tracy Smith is making a strong case for All-ACC honors in his first full year in the starting lineup.
The 6-foot-8, 247-pounder from Detroit, Mich., is sixth in the ACC in scoring (17.4 ppg) and rebounding (8.5 rpg), and second in field-goal percentage (56.0), while averaging 31.9 minutes per contest. Smith and Wolfpack will get the chance to improve upon their statistics with a 2 p.m. game today against North Carolina Central (4-18) at the RBC Center.
Smith has six double-doubles this season for points and rebounds and was named the MVP of the Glenn Wilkes Classic in Daytona Beach, Fla.
Smith's statistics have held steady through seven ACC games, averaging 16.1 points and 8.1 rebounds, and shooting 53.8 percent from the field and 69.0 from the free-throw line.
Smith went 10 of 12 from the field for 23 points -tying his season high - in a dominating effort in the Wolfpack's 88-74 win over Duke on Jan. 20. He also had 20 points on 9 of 15 shooting in the 77-63 loss to North Carolina on Jan. 26.
Smith's achievements stack up with all the other ACC post players, such as Wake Forest sophomore Al-Farouq Aminu, and Clemson senior Trevor Booker.
Aminu is averaging 16.8 points, 11.3 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game for the Demon Deacons. Booker leads the Tigers with 16.0 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game while shooting 55.6 percent from the field.
Here is a look at the statistical leaders of the ACC and how Smith's season stacks up.
North Carolina Central preview
North Carolina Central (4-18 overall) at NC State (13-8, 2-5 ACC)
Game time: Today, Jan. 30, 2 p.m. - RBC Center, Raleigh, N.C.
Television: None, Pack Pass on GoPack.com
PG - 10 Javi Gonzalez (5-11, Jr., 10.8 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 4.3 apg, 1.1 spg)
SG - 12 Farnold Degand (6-3, R-Sr., 6.4 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 3.0 apg)
SF - 15 Scott Wood (6-7, Fr., 8.7 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 1.6 apg)
PF - 31 Dennis Horner (6-9, Sr.,12.1 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 1.5 apg, 1.0 spg, 1.2 bpg)
C - 23 Tracy Smith (6-8, Jr., 17.4 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 1.0 apg, 1.2 bpg)
North Carolina Central
PG - 1 Michael Glasker (5-7, Jr., 7.1 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 5.1 apg, 1.5 spg)
SG - 12 C.J. Wilkerson (6-3, Jr., 15.6 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 2.6 apg, 1.1 spg)
SF - 22 Dwayne Sims (6-6, Jr., 4.0 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 0.5 apg)
PF - 35 Nick Chasten (6-7, Soph., 9.7 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 1.0 apg, 1.7 spg)
C - 42 Dijon Manns (6-8, Fr., 3.6 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 0.8 bpg)
Scouting North Carolina Central
Location: Durham, N.C.
2008-09 record: 4-27 overall
2009 postseason: None
Coach: LeVelle Moton, first year at NCCU and overall (4-18)
The all-time series with NC State: NC State leads 2-0
Last meeting: NC State won 87-59 on Feb. 3, 2009, in Raleigh
North Carolina Central: The Eagles are in the middle of a five-year transition period in their jump from Division II to Division I. NCCU will join the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference next year, and the Eagles will become eligible to compete for an NCAA Tournament berth in 2012 … Head coach LeVelle Moton ranks third in scoring and first in three-point shooting all time at North Carolina Central … The Eagles have won just as many games this year as they did during the 2008-09 (4-27) and 2007-08 (4-26) seasons … NCCU has played 15 road games this season - going 0-15 with losses to North Carolina, Miami, Iowa, Air Force, Indiana, Ball State, East Carolina, SMU and Virginia Tech … Wilkerson has scored in double digits in every game but four, including a season-high 30 points against The Apprentice School and 26 against Florida Gulf Coast and Youngstown State. He also had 22 at Indiana and 16 against UNC … Manns attended nearby Knightdale High, and Chasten went to both Raleigh Leesville Road and Wilson Charis Prep … Freshman guard Ryan Fleming is a former teammate of NCSU signee Lorenzo Brown at Roswell (Ga.) Centennial High, and the two also played together on the Lou Will Elite traveling team.
NC State: The Wolfpack has won 22 straight game against in-state non-conference opponents at the RBC Center … NC State has committed 11 turnovers or less in four straight games, the longest streak for the Wolfpack since the end of the 2004-2005 season … Brandon Costner scored 25 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, and Ben McCauley had 17 points and 12 boards in last year's 87-59 victory over North Carolina Central. The Wolfpack held a 52-14 rebound advantage and shot 57.9 from the field … NCSU has been known as a second-half team throughout the season, but have struggled after halftime the last two games. NC State has shot 19 of 67 in the second half the last two games against Maryland and North Carolina, leading to defeats … Gonzalez has averaged 15.7 points per game over the last three games after going through a mini-slump. He is shooting 8 of 14 (57.1 percent) from three-point range over the last three contests … Former NC State great Dereck Whittenburg will be honored when NC State hosts Virginia Tech on Feb. 10, as part of the Wolfpack's celebration of 100 years of basketball.