NC State 19 Miami 16 (OT)

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NC State FINALLY won a football game with fundamental play on Saturday.

NO TURNOVERS and a strong performance in the kicking game from Steven Hauschka provided the (suddenly) hot Wolfpack its third consecutive victory since the mid-season bye week. Hauschka hit four of five field goals on Saturday, including the 42 yard game winner in overtime. (Link to WRAL-TV’s game entry)

The game also served as Coach Tom O’Brien’s first ever win against Miami…providing his ‘Boston College critics’ a stick in the eye for criticizing O’Brien’s inability to beat Miami while in Chestnut Hill. After today, obviously the issue wasn’t the coach.

The Wolfpack’s gameplan and strategy heading into Saturday was simple – stop the run and make the worst quarterback that we will face this year beat us with the throw.

That was easier said than done as Miami controlled State’s defensive line and the Wolfpack’s linebackers failed to make key tackles throughout the day. Down three points with the ball and less than five minutes to go, Miami refused to pass the ball and hammered FIFTEEN CONSECUTIVE RUNS against a seemingly defenseless Wolfpack before needing to pass to manage the clock. Even on a key 3rd and 6 with less than three minutes to go Miami ran for 8 yards and a first down. Behind the run, Miami was able to tie the game on a field goal with 0:19 seconds remaining.

Mike Archer’s defense was able to partially mitigate the Hurricane’s running attack by intercepting Kirby Freeman three times in only fourteen attempts. Freeman managed to complete only ONE pass in regulation. That one pass was a busted play for the Wolfpack’s pass coverage and went for an 84 yard touchdown. For some inexplicable reason, the ESPNU announcers made NO mention or issue of this phenomenal statistic.

With ^this as a backdrop, the world KNEW that Miami was not going to risk throwing the ball in overtime unless the Wolfpack MADE them. Even with 3rd down and 9 yards to go in the first overtime the Hurricanes chose to run up the middle and attempt a field goal that was missed wide to the left.

The half empty Orange Bowl was relatively quiet most of the day, with the roar of “Wolf / Pack” from NC State’s crowd resonating on television as loud as any Miami cheer of the afternoon.

After two consecutive wins, the NC State of the last two seasons returned for most of the first half of the Wolfpack’s visit to the Orange Bowl today. Untimely penalties. Very poor offensive line play. Allowing inexplicable big plays on defense while otherwise containing the opponent. Even Steven Hauschka missed a 30 yard field goal after nailing 10 straight to open the season.

The Wolfpack’s offense found a little stride in the last six minutes of the second quarter. While using the pass more effectively than earlier in the game, State put together two good drives with one resulting in a touchdown and headed to halftime down only 10-7.

In the second half, State managed to keep the Hurricane defense on the field and smartly shifted to a no-huddle offense when Miami showed some fatigue. Additionally, an outbreak of dropped passes and untimely penalties impaired State drives and forced the Wolfpack to resort to kicking. With 6:55 to go in the game, place kicker Steven Hauschka hit a forty-seven yard field goal to give the Wolfpack a 16-13 lead. Hauschka has hit 3 of 4 field goals today and has consistently boomed his kickoffs deep into the end zone.

D’Andre Morgan came up large for the Wolfpack with two big pass break-ups in the end zone in the last 35 seconds of the game.

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'07 Football

79 Responses to NC State 19 Miami 16 (OT)

  1. redfred2 11/03/2007 at 8:12 PM #


  2. Sw0rdf1sh 11/03/2007 at 8:12 PM #

    What a game. No Turnovers can’t be said enough.

    But the butter on the hands of the receivers really pissed me off today. Evans can’t be a great QB without help.

    Spencers catch was a TD too.

  3. sf59 11/03/2007 at 8:19 PM #

    ^^DB was hearing Kenny Phillips foot steps on both drops and got alligator arms. On similar plays Davis made his grab. Srs like DB need to step up.

  4. redfred2 11/03/2007 at 8:36 PM #

    ^I didn’t see the game but I listened to it at work, and it definitely sounded like a lot of very catchable passes were either dropped or the receivers weren’t ready when the ball arrived. It was definitely great to win a third in a row and pull off a road win in the Orange Bowl but we need to capitalize especially when a much maligned QUARTERBACK is doing his job to get a group of highly touted receivers the football.

  5. tractor57 11/03/2007 at 9:19 PM #

    Wasn’t a pretty game but the ‘Pack survived.
    Now to the tar babies!

  6. VaWolf82 11/03/2007 at 9:19 PM #

    There is absolutely no excuse for letting a horrible QB throw the ball when your RB’s are pounding out 300+ yds on the ground. Special thanks to the Miami coaching staff from Wolfpack fans everywhere.

  7. Sw0rdf1sh 11/03/2007 at 9:30 PM #

    I hear ya VaWolf. 1/14 is a great thing. Too bad the 1 was a 84 yd TD.

  8. VaWolf82 11/03/2007 at 9:33 PM #

    Did anyone watch the UNC game? Why did UMD throw the ball so much?

  9. Clarksa 11/03/2007 at 9:33 PM #

    ^absolutely…Miami had several WTF play calls in the second half that allowed us to remain in the game. They should have trashed all the passing play calls in the second half.

  10. Mr O 11/03/2007 at 10:20 PM #

    +7 in TO margin our last three games. We gave up three big plays that were mostly luck to setup the first 13 pts. UM only had one legitimate drive (at the end of the game to send it to OT). We won field position, played smart on offense, and caught a big break with the Miami receiver being called out of bounds in the end zone. When we got down, nobody panicked and it was almost as if the team knew that it was only a matter of time before they were going to win the game.

    This is the exact type of football most people expected when TOB was hired. Unfortunately it took half the season(although I think it can be argued we started seeing some signs in the L’vill and FSU games), but the staff is delivering exactly as expected. Really, it is an amazing turnaround.

    Up until the ECU win, I was afraid we were going to be really, really bad for a several years before a turnaround was even possible. Now all of sudden a bowl game is a possibility. We should be slight favorites in two of our last three games and not much of an underdog against Wake. Next week is obviously a huge game and a game UNC usually takes from us right when we start feeling good about ourselves. The Heels looked good today also.

    Hauschka(sp) was huge. I can’t remember a kicker having a game like that in an NC State uniform in a long time. Amazing find by TOB just wish he had another year left of eligibility.

  11. WolftownVA81 11/03/2007 at 10:31 PM #

    If anyone is watching the BC game, another stick in the eye to TOB critics was Brent Mussberger’s comment that the BC being ranked #2 was only page 8 news in the Boston Globe.
    I felt bad for Spencer too. That would have been a great memory for him. In spite of the win, I hope we can get our heads back in the game for next week. This one didn’t have to be this close. Eugene did a great job today. He and the kicker get my vote for the most valuable players. Great job Pack – keep it up.

  12. packgrad2000 11/03/2007 at 10:52 PM #

    Great win all around, and what a kicker we have! He is clutch. However, was anyone else frustrated by the fact that even though every person in the stadium knew they were going to run on that last drive (or just about the entire 4th quarter for that matter), we still couldn’t stop them? I know it was the 4th quarter and we were tired, but we were being manhandled for the most part. I guess you have to give them credit for taking away the pass though…we did get burned on that ONE pass play but it didn’t happen again, so maybe we were staying as balanced as we could be defensively…

  13. highstick 11/03/2007 at 11:15 PM #

    Musberger’s just a “has been” liberal idiot that never should have been allowed to get on any sports telecast. I think he might be the “Daddy of the Drive-By Sports Idiots” and Tom Sorenson’s illegitimate Daddy. Two “greasebags”!

  14. noah 11/03/2007 at 11:15 PM #

    Excellent win today.

    I think we understand now why Miguel Scott wasn’t playing much. While he did come up with an interception, he blew the coverage that led to the ONE completion that Kirby Freeman managed to have.

    I’m not too worried that our defense couldn’t stop their run. Miami has a pretty good OL and three very good running backs. They ought to be able to run on a team like us.

    Personnel-wise, Miami should have beaten us by 17 points. I’m awfully pleased with how this season has progressed.

  15. Mr O 11/03/2007 at 11:24 PM #

    Noah: It may have been Scott, but I thought I read a post-game quote from Dajuan Morgan saying he blew the coverage. Said he was supposed to be deep, but bit on the play fake.

    Our defense held Miami to 16 points. In this game, that is all that mattered. Earlier this season and the last several years, our offense would have turned the ballover several times and given the other team 10+ pts off of TOs and field position. Not making critical mistakes gave us a chance to win this game.

  16. noah 11/03/2007 at 11:36 PM #

    Was it Morgan? I thought we were in zone and Scott was playing man and never rotated over? Perhaps Scott had it right and Morgan got it wrong.

  17. choppack1 11/03/2007 at 11:43 PM #

    Gutsy win today. Give Evans credit – he wasn’t in the zone today, nor were his receivers. However, he played very smart and didn’t force stuff. Give credit to the D – we’re starting to see the INTS we were hoping to see earlier in the year.

    A couple of brain farts nearly cost us this game. Give our D credit – they came up big the last 2 times they had to. I’ll take a win in Miami any time.

    About the BC game – what the hell happened to FSU in the red zone?? You’re moving it w/ some quick passes to the flat – and you run it twice up the middle against a stout run defense??? What the hell.

  18. Mr O 11/03/2007 at 11:43 PM #

    We need Scott to play well because Walker has the dreaded “knee sprain”. Here was the quote:

    After the ‘Canes jumped on top with five minutes to play in the first half 10-0 following an 84-yard touchdown pass from Kirby Freeman to Darnell Jenkins, the Pack responded with a nine-play, 66-yard drive cutting the margin to 10-7 going into the break following a one-yard touchdown run by Evans.

    “We didn’t read our keys,” safety DaJuan Morgan said of the deep touchdown pass. “I was playing safety in the cover two and I was supposed to be deep. I came and bit on the play-

  19. EverettBeez 11/04/2007 at 12:13 AM #

    Mush-booger is an idiot. I’d almost rather listen to Woody.
    the LSU guys were very good – first time I’d heard them on the radio. What a game that was.

    DE’s passes in the 4th (the only Quarter I got to see) looked frightening. I see now what ya’ll have been saying about how slow they seem to move.

    Miami did run all over our D, but it was mostly for naught, so that is ok. It doesn’t matter much what you can do if you can’t get it in the end zone.

    did that ACC commercial talking about sportsmanship just show Miami? As an example of sportsmanship? Maybe the ACC office should do a “Just say no to drugs” seminar – cause how ever put that ad together was high, and not on life.

  20. brown pelican 11/04/2007 at 12:14 AM #

    congrats to the pack—the hallmark of the o’brien era will be consistency—we are beginning to eliminate the errors that have caused us to lack consistency—earlier this season—and in the recent past—great job kicking game—nice work daniel—managing the game when things weren’t going our way—next up—the heels—spot the ball!—it’s on now bubba!!

  21. Mr O 11/04/2007 at 12:26 AM #

    So much for Mattie “Ice” Ryan’s Heisman Trophy…pick 6 to end the game. Is there a more irrelevant trophy in sports?

  22. Mike 11/04/2007 at 12:36 AM #

    Agreed Mr O. Give the Heisman to the best publicity campaign. No way Rivers should not have won – by definition PR was the best player in college football. This fact should have put the trophy in his hands. Worse, he was not even invited to NY, what a joke.

  23. StateFans 11/04/2007 at 12:43 AM #

    Butch Davis is so good they might give him the Heisman this year

  24. Ismael 11/04/2007 at 1:08 AM #

    I hate to say I told you so, but i was right, this game came down to special teams and we won it big time. If you looked at the stats, Miami and State were pretty well matched up especially if you throw out some of the outliers with the turnovers. We were better passing, they were better running, that showed i think pretty well. And if DE and the WR’s could have been even a flicker of what they were last week from what you guys were saying about dropped balls and bad timing, we probably would have beaten Miami pretty good. The D was on the field ALOT today…if i were TOB i’d give them 2 days off.

    question 1: what is the SFN server…a 266Ghz Gateway?? This site is slammed after a game. Why not just host it on wordpress??

    question 2: i asked if DE could put together 3 games in a row, and while this wasn’t his best outing, he found a way to get us in position to win…and while Harrison Beck is always an injury away…will we see him anymore?

    question 3: as bad as the tireheels are, they were actually expected to beat UMD at home today…supposedly UMD has some serious injury issues as well…so the question is what will the UNC-CH game come down to, what will be the difference?

    Again, great great gutsy performance today by the Pack!! We have one 3 games now in 3 different ways, with 2 come from behinds.

  25. Ismael 11/04/2007 at 1:10 AM #

    ^ should have read 266Mhz Gateway…handsdown one of the worst performing pieces of hardware junk that was ever made.

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