Nov 11, 2012 Chapel Hill, NC, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels guard P.J. Hairston (15) shoots over Florida Atlantic Owls guard Greg Gantt (22) in the second half at the Dean E. Smith Center. North Carolina won 80-56. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-US PRESSWiRE

UNC Basketball: Discouraging Signs

The 2012-13 season is just two games old but it’s never too early to start critiquing the team.  While nothing that has happened so far in this young season can be  taken as definitive signs of whats to come, some signs both encouraging and discouraging have emerged for this years version of the North Carolina Tar Heels.  In a two part series I’ll take a look at the good and the bad through two games for UNC.  It’s time for the bad news.

Perimeter Shooting: With the return of Leslie McDonald and increased roles for Reggie Bullock and PJ Hairston as well as the arrival of Marcus Paige this was supposed to be a much better perimeter shooting team, but so far we haven’t seen it.  UNC is struggling from three point range connecting on just 7 of 27 attempts (25%).   Paige is shooting a miserable 23% from the field including 0-6 from three.  McDonald has started just 4-12 and Hairston is just 3-14.  Bullock has shot well at 72% on just 11 field goal attempts, he played a much more aggressive game against Florida Atlantic and needs to stay on the attack.  So far the perimeter group so deep in talent hasn’t produce

Desmond Hubert: Hubert got the starting nod inside over freshman Joel James and Brice Johnson for the first two games of the season.  Coach Roy Williams stated that Hubert outplayed the freshman in practice and earned the spot to start the season, whatever he is doing in practice is not translating to game day.  In both games Hubert has played awful and been replaced by James to start the second half.  Hubert has yet to score and has managed just two field goal attempts in 27 combined minutes.  He has just seven rebounds and hasn’t played well on the defensive side of the court in either game.

Free Throw Shooting: Through two games the team has made just 21 of 46 attempts at the line for a dismal 45.7%.  The teams top shooters aren’t getting to the line and the ones who are, aren’t knocking them down.  This team will not survive against elite competition shooting like this at the charity stripe.  Their struggles at the line are the most concerning development of the season thus far in my eyes.

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