RALEIGH, N.C. – Coming off a 24-win season and an NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 appearance, the NC State men’s basketball team is ranked 20th in the final ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll released Tuesday afternoon.
NC State made the NCAA Tournament for the first time since the 2005-06 season and its 24 victories were the most since 1988 and nine conference wins were the most since 2006. Head coach Mark Gottfried win total was only second to legendary Everett Case (26) for triumphs by a first-year Wolfpack mentor.
The Pack has been ranked in the final polls a total of 17 times in the program’s history. State’s highest final ranking was No. 1 when it captured the 1974 national championship. The last time NC State was ranked in the final polls was at the conclusion of the 2003-04 season, when the Pack finished 15th.
This is the fourth time in Gottfried’s coaching career that he has led a squad to a spot in the final rankings. His Alabama teams finished No. 8 in 2001-02, No. 17 in 2003-04 and No. 21 in 2004-05.