The walk out of Carter-Finley back to the Trinity Lot is a lot more enjoyable after a win.
Sure, that seems obvious, but with all the pronged “reviews” going on over at The Flagship lately, it’s been easy for us tortured State fans to overlook the fact that TOB has this NC State football team playing well and at 3-0 for the first time since 2002.
And while 14 days ago I was cautiously optimistic, and seven days ago I was even more so, on that walk out last night I decided to just revel in the enjoyment that this team might just be better than the previous ones. Sure, Western was a slouch – certainly no James Madison – and Central Florida only needs to get past Houston or those pesky Pirates to play in the Liberty Bowl, and even last night we didn’t face Brian Kelly’s Bearcats. But that’s not a bad Cincinnati team at all – and they showed that with how quickly they scored their first touchdown.
I’m not saying we’re the class of the ACC – Clemson can sure make a strong case down at Auburn and Maryland can do the same at West Virginia this weekend – but I have been impressed so far with how much improvement we’ve seen in both the intensity and execution on defense, and how quickly our offense finds its rhythm. We kept pressure on Collaros all night long with various blitzes and an overpowering defensive line that led to five sacks and four hurries, and minus the two junk touchdowns late in the game, the defense was as stingy as it’s ever been under TOB. Our offense has rarely been the problem with Wilson at the helm, but now it looks like we’ve found a running back in Mustafa Greene to not only help balance out the slicing passing attack that utilizes five different threats, but also provide that safety valve for Wilson when he’s forced to unload in a hurry. When that offense is in rhythm, it’s a thing of beauty to watch.
How about we just not talk about the kicking game?
The past six months have been a whirlwind of optimism. We have a new Chancellor that appears fully capable of leading us forward. We replaced a woefully incompetent AD with a wholly capable one. We have the most talent on our basketball team in two decades. And we’re 3-0 in football, with a tough but very winnable game at Georgia Tech next weekend.
I could get used to this.