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Recap & Analysis: UNC 78 Florida State 74

"It was a weird game." That has become Roy Williams' go-to phrase to describe UNC of late and it certainly fits. The Tar Heels played well enough offensively but had to survive an onslaught from FSU's Xavier Rathan-Mayes to squeeze out a 78-74 win. Rathan-Mayes' 35 points were the most by an opposing player in the Dean Smith Center since J.J. Redick scored 35 in 2006.

Video: Roy Williams Post-FSU Press Conference

North Carolina head coach Roy Williams addresses the media following the Tar Heels' 78-74 win over Florida State on January 24, 2015.

Video: UNC-Florida State Game Highlights

View complete game highlights from North Carolina's 78-74 ACC win over Florida State Saturday in Chapel Hill.

No. 15 North Carolina holds off Florida State 78-74 in ACC

Brice Johnson had 18 points and 14 rebounds to help No. 15 North Carolina beat Florida State 78-74 on Saturday. Marcus Paige scored 19 points to lead the Tar Heels, who won their fifth straight league game. The Tar Heels led nearly all day, though they struggled to put the game away and ended up doing enough to hang on down the stretch against freshman Xavier Rathan-Mayes and the Seminoles.

Lucas: Rapid Reactions - Florida State

That's one of the least close-feeling games that was actually close that you'll ever see. Florida State made it a one possession game with under a minute to play, but you never got the feeling in the Smith Center that it was that close a game. The Tar Heels didn't make it especially attractive, but they at least got the win facing plenty of adversity.

Video: J.P. Tokoto's Chase-Down Block vs FSU

UNC junior J.P. Tokoto shows off his athleticism as he hustles back on the break for the big chase-down block against Florida State on January 24, 2015.

Box Score: North Carolina 78, Florida State 74

View the complete box score from North Carolina's 78-74 win over Florida State Saturday in Chapel Hill:

Williams wants better rebounding when UNC faces FSU

The reason North Carolina was playing zone defense during the Tar Heels' win at Wake Forest the other night is because starters Marcus Paige, J.P. Tokoto and Kennedy Meeks were in foul trouble early in the second half. UNC coach Roy Williams was trying to put them in positions to keep their hands to themselves.

UNC Scouting Report: FSU Coach Leonard Hamilton (audio)

In his tenure, Florida State men’s basketball head coach Leonard Hamilton has transformed the Seminoles, who won the 2012 ACC Tournament title, from an afterthought into a formidable force in college basketball. WCHL’s Blake Hodge had a chance to chat with Coach Hamilton as his FSU squad aims for an upset in Chapel Hill Saturday afternoon.

Short-handed Heels look to stay hot against Seminoles

The 15th-ranked North Carolina Tar Heels put a four-game win streak on the line on Saturday as they play host to the Florida State Seminoles in ACC action from the Dean E. Smith Center. Roy Williams' Tar Heels are streaking right now with four straight victories and nine in their last 10 outings. The lone loss over that span was a narrow 71-70 defeat at the hands of Notre Dame on Jan. 5.

Tar Heels look to push right buttons with Brice Johnson

Given Roy Williams’ constant and often loud demands for Brice Johnson to maintain an aggressive, hardworking edge in the post, Johnson typically is quite aware of how his contributions are trending, good or bad. “My teammates seemed to love it and Coach was excited for me,” Johnson said of the Wake Forest game, “because that’s what we need out of me and that’s the player he wants me to be.”

Three to know – Florida State at No. 15 North Carolina

Florida State enters the game having just snapped a three-game losing skid. It has one true road win this season and has little in common with the dangerous Seminoles teams coach Leonard Hamilton has put forward in recent seasons. For the Tar Heels, who own a four-game winning streak in the series, playing an inspired 40 minutes would be a welcome sight.

Kennedy Meeks emerging as defensive stalwart for UNC

Despite his scoring prowess, Marcus Paige isn’t UNC’s most valuable player – that would be sophomore big Kennedy Meeks. Entering this season, the 6-foot-9 Meeks was known more for losing roughly 50 pounds during his freshman season than for his on-court contributions, but Meeks has emerged as a defensive anchor for a Tar Heel team that is playing some of its best defense.

Michael Jordan statue moving indoors

Go see the Michael Jordan statue soon, because it's going indoors. Currently, the Jordan statue sits on the east side of the United Center. The 12-foot statue, which shows Jordan soaring for a one-handed dunk, was unveiled in 1994 after Jordan's first retirement. It is a consistent tourist attraction with fans from around the world making a pilgrimage to the West Side to take pictures in front of it.

Preview & Prediction: #15 UNC vs Florida State

Thanks to injuries to Joel Berry, Stilman White, Luke Davis, Theo Pinson and Nate Britt possibly missing the game due to 15 stitches in his mouth, the Heels are suddenly very thin on the perimeter. How thin? If Nate Britt is unable to play, walk-on Justin Coleman might see sport minutes and J.P. Tokoto run the point to ensure Marcus Paige can get a breather. Prediction: UNC 88, FSU 64

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Last Game:
North Carolina: 74
Villanova: 77
Mon, Apr 4 Box Score

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ACC Basketball Standings
(3) North Carolina14-433-7
(4) Virginia13-529-8
(10) Miami13-527-8
(16) Louisville12-623-8
Notre Dame11-724-11
(19) Duke11-725-11
Virginia Tech10-820-15
Georgia Tech8-1021-15
Florida State8-1020-14
NC State5-1316-17
Wake Forest2-1611-20
Boston College0-187-25

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