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February 1, 2013

NC State preparing for various PG scenarios




NC State coach Mark Gottfried isn't going to rush star junior point guard Lorenzo Brown back if he's not healed from his ankle injury, which was suffered during Tuesday's 58-55 loss at Virginia.

Gottfried said Brown underwent treatment throughout Thursday and into Friday morning and is wearing a walking boot. The versatile 6-foot-5, 186-pound playmaker has started 59 straight games at NC State (16-5 overall, 5-3 ACC), but that streak could come to an end Saturday against first-place Miami at PNC Arena. The Hurricanes are a perfect 7-0 in the ACC and 16-3 overall.

Gottfried didn't completely rule out Brown for the Miami game because he simply doesn't know how his ankle will respond to continued treatment. He did add that Brown underwent an X-Ray, which ruled out anything serious to it. Only time will tell if Brown plays against Miami or at Duke on Feb. 7.

Brown is averaging 12.7 points, 6.9 assists and 4.3 rebounds per game this season. If Brown can't go, the onus falls on to freshmen Rodney Purvis and Tyler Lewis to run the offense.

When Purvis is at point guard, senior Scott Wood slides down to shooting guard and freshman T.J. Warren takes over at small forward. Purvis and Wood would handle the shooting guard minutes if Lewis is running the point.

Purvis went 2 of 7 from the field for six points, plus one assists in 33 minutes against Cavaliers, where he played both guard positions. Lewis added three points and two assists off the bench in 15 minutes.

The Purvis/Lewis combo will have their hands full defending Miami sophomore point guard Shane Larkin, who is the son of MLB Hall of Famer Barry Larkin. The 5-11, 176-pound Shane Larkin is averaging 12.9 points and 4.0 assists per game, and is shooting 41.0 percent from three-point land during his breakout season.

Larkin is arguably coming off one of his best games when he drained 5 of 10 on three-pointers en route to 25 points in a 73-64 win at Virginia Tech on Wednesday. Larkin also had 18 points, 10 rebounds and five assists during the Hurricanes' 90-63 win over Duke on Jan. 23.

Click here to listen to Gottfried's press conference:

Mark Gottfried audio press conference (18:58)



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