Live from Charlotte, Belk Bowl Update


  • 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.

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20 Responses to Live from Charlotte, Belk Bowl Update

  1. LRM 12/27/2011 at 1:59 PM #

    This may be the first time this bowl has custom end zones; looks sharp.

  2. eas 12/27/2011 at 2:29 PM #

    Is the game sold out? We’re going but I was curious about the crowd size

  3. LKNpackfan 12/27/2011 at 3:14 PM #

    It isn’t a sell out but more than 58k tickets have been sold, as of last week.

  4. JohnGalt78 12/27/2011 at 3:34 PM #

    Should have a few more than UNCheat had yesterday….they could count them on one hand, assuming they could count.

  5. BJD95 12/27/2011 at 4:00 PM #

    Having grown up in Charlotte…let’s just say I was more than familiar with a supermajority of classmates who loved the Holes, but “didn’t really care for college football” – especially during the Sheridan years. I taunted them anyway, usually as a Wolfpack of One!

    A nice win tonight would twist the knife sticking out of Hole Nation’s collective belly after 2011’s follies. I think we get the job done.

  6. tractor57 12/27/2011 at 4:27 PM #

    Cautiously optimistic here.

  7. wufpup76 12/27/2011 at 4:36 PM #

    I like us tonight.

    Hope we come out solid, sharp and focused.

  8. BJD95 12/27/2011 at 5:33 PM #

    Primarily, I hope Purdue/Western Michigan doesn’t overshoot its alloted timeslot. Purdue really looks like shit, fyi.

  9. BladenWolf 12/27/2011 at 5:34 PM #

    Drove towards Charlotte this morning in a driving rain. Was thinking the outcome would depend on our ground game – or theirs. Once in town the clouds have parted and it looks like it may be good football weather for Glennon to operate…if the wind stays down. I’m hoping our defense comes out aggressive and we have at least three turnovers, where we are unbeaten. Fewer than three turnovers… and we are winless. All the predictions have it a close game. They have a freshman QB so I think if we can rattle him then we win tonight. GO PACK!

  10. wufpup76 12/27/2011 at 6:56 PM #

    At the rate Purdue – Western Michigan is going we’ll be lucky to be on tv by 9 pm.


  11. BJD95 12/27/2011 at 7:17 PM #

    In my view, bad field conditions (as long as the ball is reasonably dry) favor the passing game. Very difficult to make “reaction” cuts as a defensive back. I expect a shootout.

  12. BJD95 12/27/2011 at 7:28 PM #

    Hopefully we get the feed on ESPN-U or -NEWS. Though they may just switch us since we are the “home” market.

  13. wufpup76 12/27/2011 at 7:29 PM #

    ^I hope so.

    Twenty minutes ago there was 11:00 left in the third quarter. There are now 9:00 left in the third quarter.

  14. Wufpacker 12/27/2011 at 7:53 PM #

    ^ I find myself repeatedly yelling “keep it on the ground and stay inbounds you $%#@&’s”.

  15. Wufpacker 12/27/2011 at 7:55 PM #

    You gonna live blog this one BJD? Or just go free for all?

  16. bill.onthebeach 12/27/2011 at 8:01 PM #

    Wolfpack in “RED from HEAD to TOE” !!!

  17. vtpackfan 12/27/2011 at 8:10 PM #

    Got to imagine a NFL pitch can take a soak in the am and be set to go prime-time.

  18. vtpackfan 12/27/2011 at 8:18 PM #

    The Cards W’s on the road got me some nervous. Their coach knows how to get their focus early on. If we can escape the first quarter decently then I like our chances.

  19. TheCOWDOG 12/27/2011 at 9:46 PM #

    This game will rest on Glennon. No escaping it, ’cause Bible is letting it all hang out.

    Bubble screens wouldn’t look so bad right now.

  20. tractor57 12/28/2011 at 12:07 AM #

    Fitting that the play that sealed the game was an Amerson int.

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