Game Time: 6:00 ET
Why You Need To Care
Facing a soft September schedule, NC State fully expects to be 4-0 by the time Louisville comes to Raleigh on Oct. 3. The Wolfpack outclassed Troy in the opener, 49-21, and can get halfway to a perfect September by being as inhospitable to Eastern Kentucky. The Colonels kicked off their season with a 52-10 blowout of Valparaiso.
Why Eastern Kentucky Will Win
The Colonels are confident after pitching a complete game in the opener. They beefed up their roster with FBS transfers, like former Ohio State pass rusher Noah Spence, and should have some opportunities against an NC State D that showed some cracks in the Troy game.
Why NC State Will Win
Valpo did nothing to prepare the EKU D for what it’ll face this weekend. Even without suspended RB Shadrach Thornton, the Pack will move the chains with balance. QB Jacoby Brissett is versatile, as is backup RB Matt Dayes, who led the team in rushing and receiving in the opener.
Player Who Matters
Facing Spence, who’ll play on Sundays, will be a terrific test for Wolfpack tackles Will Richardson and Joe Thuney, who wouldn’t normally get a workout from an FCS lineman. Spence is going to help a mediocre Pack line become battle-tested before ACC play starts.
What’s Going To Happen?
Eastern Kentucky cannot be taken lightly. And NC State head coach Dave Doeren knows it. He’ll have his Wolfpack ready and focused, particularly the multi-dimensional offensive duo of Brissett and Dayes. Once Brissett and Dayes start putting points on the board, the Colonels won’t have the offensive execution to close the gap.
Prediction: NC State 45, Eastern Kentucky 17