Wolfpack Wins Rollercoaster Ride in West Raleigh


The N. C. State Fair is a little less than 2 months away, but the rollercoaster in West Raleigh began in earnest this afternoon as Dave Doeren’s Wolfpack wins its first game of the season in dramatic fashion in a 24-23 come-from -behind win over Georgia Southern University.

On a day that saw former defensive All-American Mario Williams have his jersey honored, the Pack, behind the arm of redshirt junior Jacoby Brissett, outlasted an Eagle squad that came to play.   A raucous crowd of 54,273 at Carter-Finley Stadium witnessed two different games. The first half started slowly as Brissett and his Pack teammates knocked the rust off a disappointing 2013 season and an anxious offseason.

After a 61 yard jaunt by GSU running back Matt Breida, the team from Statesboro, Georgia took an early 7-0 lead. Defensively the Wolfpack led by T. Y. McGill, Hakim Jones and Dravious Wright performed well keeping Georgia Southern’s spread offense in check for most of the first half. That is until the second BIG play of the half put the Eagles up 17-3 at the half. On that play GSU’s Kevin Ellison hit wide receiver Kentrellis Showers for a 29 yard touchdown pass.

Things did not look good. Two Niklas Sade missed field goals (52 and 54 yards) appeared to be an ominous sign of things to come..

Defensively it was only 2 big plays that had the Wolfpack behind.

Offensively it was gut check time.

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The second half was a different story as Jacoby Brissett came to the rescue.  With three second-half touchdowns and a 28-40 for 291 yard performance, Brissett helped calm Pack fans of any flashbacks to 2013 QB play.

Aug 30, 2014; Raleigh, NC: North Carolina State Wolfpack quarterback Jacoby Brissett (12) passes during the second half against Georgia Southern at Carter Finley Stadium. North Carolina State won 24-23. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA Today

On this day, both teams came to play. For the most part the teams played equally on both sides of the ball.  Solid defense with a few big offensive plays sprinkled in.

After the Eagles kicked a 31-yard field goal to take a 23-17 lead with 3:35 to play, the Wolfpack had their backs against the wall.  Brissett then proceeded to engineer a 9 play 75 yard drive. The gamewinner came with 1:37 left as Brissett hit Matt Dayes down the right sideline for 35 yards to tie the score at 23.   All that was left was Sade’s extra point and one final stand by a good Wolfpack defense.


They got it done and begin this 2014 football season 1-0.

Next up… Old Dominion.

As for Georgia Southern….not bad for a first Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) game.