There are a couple of interesting articles from the local paper today. Coincidentally, one of yesterday’s discussions centered around the shrinking local media and specifically the CharlotteObserver/Raleigh News and Observer and NC State beat writer Ken Tysiac. Tysiac delivered a must read article on Russell Wilson and his family:
Russell’s father often told him that “there is a king in every crowd.”
As explained to Russell, the quote means that there’s always somebody — God, and perhaps a coach or pro scout — watching you.
That is constant incentive to do things right.
That philosophy helped Russell earn the right to line up behind center on Thursday night, a game that will be nationally televised on ESPN.
His mother and brother will be there. So will his 11-year-old sister, Anna, and two uncles. His father won’t be able to attend, but will be in Russell’s thoughts on the bus ride to Columbia, S.C., and before the game.
When the game starts, though, Russell will be ready to do his job.
“I’ll be thinking about him, but I’ll be focused on winning the game,” Russell said. “That’s what my dad would want.”
First of all, we would like to wish Russell’s father the best in his recovery and hope that he is able to experience his son starting at Carter Finley stadium this year. Does this information better explain some of Russell’s struggles in scrimmages during Fall camp?
It is literally impossible to know how Russell Wilson will perform in Columbia on Thursday, but he is quite an impressive kid and excels at everything he does. What do we know about Russell? We know that he was a high academic achiever in high school and he was the senior class president. Additionally, his success academically has continued at NC State posting a 3.6 GPA while playing both baseball and football. So he is obviously intelligent, mature beyond his years, hardworking, and a strong leader. He has handled adversity in the past well (see today’s article) and continues to face difficult circumstances with his father’s health. We also know that he is a very good athlete as he was drafted out of high school by the Baltimore Orioles (check this link for an interview back in high school about being drafted).
In terms of how that translated at the ACC level in baseball, he made a major impact in the Pack’s only victory in the Super Regional against Georgia. He had multiple hits and multiple RBIs in clutch situations to lead the Pack to a win in Game 2 of the series. That game was also on the road against an SEC team that was heavily favored. The similarities end there as the responsibility of handling the ball on every offensive snap in front of 80,000 people as a quarterback dwarfs the responsibilities of a designated hitter in a college baseball game. But if anyone can handle this situation, then it just might be Russell Wilson.
Tysiac also spoke with former NC State and USC head coach Lou Holtz:
Holtz said the schools in Carolinas capital cities are similar in a lot of ways.
“The fans at N.C. State were really tremendous. They sold the stadium out, sat on that hill back there and were enthusiastic. The fans at South Carolina, even when you lose, there were 80,000 there. … They’re very good schools, but they’re city schools also. They have a campus but they have a city. There’s a lot to do. It’s a great place to live. … There really are a lot more similarities than there are things that are dissimilar.”
Holtz predicts South Carolina will win.
“They have great talent. They have potentially four or five first-round draft picks on defense.”
“Tom O’Brien will get [N.C. State] back and straight. But with their quarterbacks, offensive line, running backs, it seems to be the overall caliber is down. You can get surprised, but looking at it as an analyst, evaluating the two football teams, it’s not close.”