As with most teams at this time of the year, NC State's defense showed signs of being ahead of the offense, as the Wolfpack's outstanding defensive line stayed in the backfield all day long.
With a sack coming by simply touching the quarterback, the Wolfpack defense totaled 12 sacks on the day and 15 tackles for loss. Leading the way was senior defensive end Reynaldo Moses (two sacks, four tackles for loss), freshman end Willie Young (two sacks, two tackles for loss), senior end Manny Lawson (2.5 sacks, two tackles for loss), sophomore tackle Demario Pressley (two sacks, three tackles for loss), and junior tackle John McCargo (two sacks, two tackles for loss).
The defense also scored the first touchdown of the day, as sophomore cornerback Phillip Holloman intercepted a Daniel Evans pass and returned it 35 yards for the touchdown.
"Defensively, we just have to wait and see how good we are," head coach Chuck Amato said afterwards. "I think we can be pretty good on defense."
The star on the other side of the ball was sophomore running back Bobby Washington. The Miami, Florida standout had several impressive runs and looked even more explosive than during his freshman campaign. Washington rushed for 129 yards on 17 carries, including a 10-yard touchdown run.
"Bobby Washington's a fair running back," Amato said. "He's impressive, there's no doubt about that. If he gets a little bit of room... he's got juice. He can make people miss and he's got speed on top of that. He's a real good one."
"I came out a little slow today, everybody saw that," said Washington. "I came out and started to run hard and hold the ball a little more. I knew I had to run hard because the offensive line was doing good and the wide receivers were blocking."
Junior Reggie Davis, who started with the first unit, added 72 yards on 12 carries and had an 11-yard touchdown run against the starting unit.
Both quarterbacks, senior Jay Davis and sophomore Marcus Stone, struggled at times but each improved throughout the day. Stone completed 10-of-18 passes for 148 yards and led the Wolfpack on three scoring drives while Davis, who will enter the fall as the starter, connected on 7-of-15 passes for 112 yards. Freshman Daniel Evans was 1-of-5 for seven yards and one interception.
"I thought at times both of them did good," Amato said. "At times they both did some really good things. I think their decision making has got better, but at times they couldn't make a decision. You can't fault them for that stuff. They have improved though."
Senior wide receiver Brian Clark also had a big day, as he finished with seven receptions for 131 yards. Freshman tight end Octavious Darby had three catches for 50 yards and senior tight end T.J. Williams had two catches for 41 yards. Sophomore tight end Anthony Hill added two catches for 24 yards.
"I thought the offense picked it up in the second part of the scrimmage and moved the ball a lot better," Amato said. "Offensively, we've got to sew up the offensive line. Leroy [Harris] has been hurt a little bit, and we've had some guys banged up.
"That's why we signed so many linemen this past year. If we can get help from somebody, maybe one of those youngsters that have a little bit of maturity, that can help us there."
Placekicker John Deraney was solid for the Wolfpack, as he drilled 3-of-4 field goal attempts with his lone miss coming up short from 48-yards out.
During "goalline," junior defensive end Mario Williams wowed the crowd as he had a three-yard touchdown reception from the tight end position. Lining up at tight end, Williams made an acrobatic reception over Manny Lawson in the corner of the endzone. The play ignited the goalline drills and inspired the defense which was dominant all day.