December 20, 2002 - by
Florida State Plays Host To No. 23 North Carolina Sunday In Men’s Basketball

Dec. 20, 2002

Florida State plays host to North Carolina in the ACC opener for the Seminoles and the Tar Heels. The Seminoles enter Sunday’s game with a 6-1 record, which marks its best start since the 1997-98 season when they last played in the NCAA Tournament. That season, the Seminoles improved to 8-1 before losing their second game of the season and finished with an 18-14 record. Florida State, which defeated North Carolina in its first ever ACC game (Dec. 15, 1991; 86-74), is playing its final game of its season-opening eight-game homestand – the longest in school history.

Freshman point guard Todd Galloway, who spearheaded the Seminoles’ come-from-behind 56-47 victory over Birmingham Southern with a strong second-half performance, was named the Atlantic Coast Conference Rookie of the Week in voting conducted by a panel of ACC sportswriters. Galloway is only the eighth player in Florida State history to have earned the award since the 1991-92 season. The eight Florida State players have now earned the honor a total of 11 times. Galloway (Baltimore, Md./Notre Dame (Va.) Academy) scored 12 points on seven of eight made free throws (all in the second half) while handling a great deal of the guard duties during the final 20 minutes of the game. He played a career-high 29 minutes and was not charged with a single turnover (zero turnovers) while scoring 10 second half points including the go-ahead 3-pointer for Florida State in its only game last week.

Florida State was ranked FIRST in the nation in field goal percentage defense in the NCAA statistics dated Dec. 19. With one game since the rankings were released, the Seminoles slipped one notch to second behind Nebraska. Florida State enters Sunday’s game against North Carolina with a field goal percentage defense mark of .335 while Nebraska (who played host to Creighton Dec. 21) had mark of .333.

Seminoles In The National Statistics
Category Statistic Dec. 19 Ranking Statistic After Win Over Stetson

FG% Defense .333 1st .335
Scoring Defense/Game 53.3 3rd 56.6
Steals/Game 11.7 15th 11.9
Blocked Shots/Game 5.8 21st 6.4

In the Atlantic Coast Conference statistics, Florida State ranks FIRST in scoring defense, FIRST in field goal percentage defense, SECOND in 3-point field goal percentage defense, SECOND in blocked shots, SECOND in steals, THIRD in field goal shooting percentage and THIRD in 3-point field goals made per game.

…Improve to 7-1 with a victory over North Carolina. The last time the Seminoles were 7-1 was after the first eight games of the 1997-98 season;
…Defeat North Carolina at the Tallahassee Leon County Civic Center for the second consecutive season for the first time in school history. The Seminoles defeated the Tar Heels, 81-72, at home Jan. 16, 2001;
…Win its first December ACC game since Dec. 1, 1998 when the Seminoles defeated Virginia, 72-69 in Charlottesville;
…Win its ACC season opener for the first time since the 1999-00 season when the Seminoles defeated Wake Forest (Jan. 4, 2000; 66-64) to begin their ACC slate. The Florida State football team defeated Virginia Tech in the Sugar Bowl to win the national collegiate football championship that same day;
…Help Leonard Hamilton to become the second coach in school history (in three attempts) to win the first ACC game of his career. Pat Kennedy defeated North Carolina (Dec. 15, 1991; 86-74) while Steve Robinson was defeated by the Tar Heels (Dec. 20, 2997; 81-73) in their respective ACC first games;
…Beat a ranked opponent for the first time this season and for the third time in the last two seasons at the Tallahassee Leon County Civic Center. The Seminoles defeated then No. 1 Duke (Jan. 6, 2002; 77-76) and then No. 15 Virginia (Feb. 20, 2002; 66-59) at home during the 2001-02 season.

…Made 48 baskets more than its opponents — an average of 6.9 more made baskets per game through the first seven games of the season;
…Made six more 3-point shots than its opponents – an average of nearly one more made 3-point shot per game through the first seven games of the season;
…Made 22 more free throws than its opponents – an average of more than three free throws more made per game through the first seven games of the season;
…Blocked more then 2.5 times more shots (45) than its opponents (18) through the first seven games of the season. The Seminoles have blocked 10 or more shots in two different games this season;
…Been credited with 32 more steals (83) than its opponents (51) for an average of nearly five extra possessions per game.

Florida State defeated Stetson Wednesday night to claim its sixth victory of the season. It marks the earliest the Seminoles have reached the six-victory plateau since the 1997-98 season when they won their sixth game on Dec. 6 in their seventh game.

Reaching Win No. 6
Season Date Game No. Notes

2002-03 Dec. 18 Game 7 FSU plays host to UNC Dec. 22 in search of win No. 7
2001-02 Dec. 29 Game 9 Win No. 6 came during a four-game winning streak
2000-01 Jan. 31 Game 21 Win No. 6 was also first ACC win – against Clemson
1999-00 Jan. 4 Game 11 Win No. 6 came at Wake Forest as Hale scores 37
1998-99 Dec. 29 Game 11 Win No. 6 came against Miss. State in Rainbow Classic
1997-98 Dec. 6 Game 7 Win No. 7 came in game No. 8

Florida State enters Sunday’s game against North Carolina among the most improved teams in the ACC during the early part of the 2002-03 season. In addition to its 6-1 record, the Seminoles have shown a dramatic improvement in just about every statistic across the board.

Category   2002-03   2001-02   Improvement   Notes
FG Pct. .466% .430% +.036% FSU shot 68 percent against Stetson

3FGM/G 7.3 5.8 +1.5 FSU made at least 6 3-pt FG in all games
Assists/Game 15.6 13.2 +2.4 FSU with season high 24 asts vs. Stetson
Turnovers/Game 15.4 16.4 -1.0 Season low 8 TO vs. Birmingham Southern
Blocks/Game 6.4 3.5 +2.9 Seminoles among ACC and NCAA Leaders
Steals/Game 11.9 7.6 +4.3 Double figure steals in 5 of 7 games

Florida State enters Sunday night’s game as the ACC leader and is ranked second among the national leader in field goal percentage defense as it is holding its opponents to a .334 field goal shooting percentage. The Seminoles have held six of its seven opponents below .350 percent shooting from the field. The last time a Florida State team held its opponents to 40 percent (or lower) shooting from the field for a single year was during the 1996-97 season. The Seminoles’ 32 opponents were held to a cumulative .400 shooting (758-1,896) from the field. Florida State’s school record for field goal shooting percentage defense is .362 during the 1952-53 season.

Seminole head coach Leonard Hamilton is the first person to be a head coach in the Big 12, the Big East and now the ACC – Oklahoma State, Miami and now Florida State.

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