College basketball season tips off Friday. Here are nine men’s games to watch that include schools from the Carolinas:
NEWBERRY AT CHARLOTTE
Halton Arena, Charlotte, 8 p.m.
The visiting Wolves run and press the entire game, substituting full five-man units. They averaged 31 3-point field goal attempts last season. The 49ers return their leading scorer, guard Braxton Ogbueze, a senior from Charlotte.
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MARIST AT DUKE
Cameron Indoor Stadium, Durham, 7 p.m.
This is a first-round game in the Hall of Fame Tip-Off. Marist was 7-23 last season but retuns four starters. The top-ranked Blue Devils are led by preseason All-America guard Grayson Allen.
NORTH CAROLINA AT TULANE
Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, 9 p.m., ESPNU
The Tar Heels beat Tulane 96-72 in Chapel Hill last November. They’ll face two standout guards with the Green Wave – sophomore Melvin Frazier and senior Malik Morgan, who isn’t afraid to go to the boards.
GEORGIA SOUTHERN AT N.C. STATE
PNC Arena, Raleigh, 7 p.m.
Georgia Southern’s lineup of two freshmen and three sophomores was the youngest in the country last season, and the starters return. This will be the debut of highly-touted Wolfpack freshman Dennis Smith Jr.
RADFORD AT WAKE FOREST
Joel Coliseum, Winston-Salem, 7:30 p.m.
Radford forward Ed Polite Jr. was among the league’s top rebounders as a freshman last season. Leading the Deacons is sophomore guard Bryant Crawford, who averaged 13.8 points as a freshman.
GEORGIA AT CLEMSON
Littlejohn Coliseum, Clemson, S.C., 7 p.m.
It’s the debut of the refurbished Littlejohn Coliseum, and the host Tigers are led by preseason All-America senior forward Jaron Blossongame. Georgia counters with two preseason All-SEC guards, in J.J. Frazer and Yante Maten.
LOUISIANA TECH AT SOUTH CAROLINA
Colonial Life Arena, Columbia, 6:30 p.m.
Gamecock guard Sindarius Thornwell, of Lancaster, S.C., scored 34 points in an exhibition win against Newberry last weekend. Eric McCree, a senior forward with Louisiana Tech, has won a number of Conference USA honors.
GARDNER-WEBB AT SMU
Moody Coliseum, Dallas, 8 p.m.
It’s the head coaching debut at SMU for Tim Jankovich, who replaced Larry Brown. SMU set a season-ticket sales record and returns four regulars from a 25-5 team. Gardner-Webb should be strong in the frontcourt, with 6-7 Tyrell Nelson and 6-10 L’Hassane Niangane.
ARMSTRONG STATE AT QUEENS
Levine Center, Charlotte, 8 p.m.
This is the nightcap of the South Atlantic Conference-Peach Belt Conference Tip-Off, with Anderson and Clayton State playing the opener at 6 p.m. Queens made some national waves last Friday by beating Virginia Commonwealth 75-73 in an exhibition.