- Live from Charlotte this morning where the weather has been cold and rainy early this morning. Click here for updated weather reports and discussion.
- A little before 9am this morning there was a fire alarm in the Wolfpack’s hotel that lasted for about 25 minutes. We were tweeting during the alarm that wasn’t very disruptive. Thank goodness it didn’t happen in the middle of the night.
- Due to the slant of the local newspaper and the high concentration of Tar heel fans in the area, visiting Charlotte for games always feels akin to invading Chapel Hill. That made it was particularly fun to watch last night’s Independence Bowl game between Carolina and Missouri. BJD had some great comments bidding Everett Withers adieu in this entry.
- Caulton Tudor is putting a little pressure on the Pack writing a piece this morning that says “NC State needs to win this game”. I can’t help but agree with him — a win tonight gives Coach O’Brien two straight bowl victories and 17 wins in the last two seasons (despite an awful injury situation this year). If Terrell Manning and Mike Glennon both return to anchor their respective units, O’Brien’s Wolfpack will actually be well positioned for a ‘peak’ season of at least nine wins in 2012. It can all start tonight.
- College Football News has an overview of the programs and a little bit of a preview available here. They are picking Louisville in a tight one. For the most part, every prediction I have seen has called for a tight one with a slight majority picking NC State over the Cardinals.
Louisville will win if … Bridgewater picks up where he left off in the South Florida game.
The rookie does not have to be the MVP in order for the Cardinals to win their eighth game of 2011. He does, however, have to keep the chains moving, and lead his troops into the end zone at least a couple of times. Louisville has been held to no more than 17 points on six separate occasions this year, and won just one of those games, so the stingy defense will get it only so far. To get over the hump, Bridgewater, with help out of the backfield from Victor Anderson and Dominique Brown, has to prevent the punters from trotting on to the field more than four or five times.
NC State will win if … it continues with its season-long thievery.
The Wolfpack is still playing in December, in large part, because of the big-play ability of the defense. The crew had a knack for shifting the momentum of games this year by stripping balls and taking passes back the other way. In fact, when NC State intercepted more passes than touchdowns passes allowed, it went 7-0. Slowing down an average Louisville attack won’t be enough on this evening.
No, the Pack will need to become an extension of the offense, cutting short drives, and giving Glennon a short field with which to work. The onus is going to fall on Amerson, Manning and Cole to make sure that Bridgewater and his young receivers play with all of the inconsistency of rookies.
- Pack Insider has a deeper look at the numbers for tonight’s game available here. Austin Johnson continued to the theme about turnovers this morning on Twitter when he shared that state is 7-0 in games where we won the turnover battle and 0-5 in games where we did not.
NC State has a 1.17 Turnover Margin, which ranks 5th in the NCAA. Louisville’s -.08 Turnover Margin ranks 68th in the NCAA.
No matter what your preferred method of communication may be, the SFN authors should have you covered today/tonight.
- The blog should have lively conversation throughout the day and night.
- Our message forums really need your participation today in hopes to keep at least all of the topics on the first page of the forums current (within the last 24 hours). Click here for link to message forums.
- I will be Tweeting throughout the day from various vantage points in Charlotte. You can join our 4,125+ Twitter followers here.