Junior Defensive End
Nickname- "Super Mario"
6-7, 285 pounds
Richlands (NC) High School
Although asked to step in as a freshman starter, Williams had plenty of shining moments during the 2003 season. He finished off the year with 56 total tackles including 13 tackles-for-loss and five sacks. Williams also added seven QB hurries, 5 pass breakups and two caused fumbles.
Williams built on an impressive freshman season by tallying 40 tackles, seven sacks and 16 tackles for loss as a sophomore.
- Named a freshman all-american by Scripps/FWAA (first team), College Football News (second team) and The Sporting News (first team).
- Named All-ACC first team as a sophomore
- Named All-American honorable mention by Pro Football Weekly as a sophomore
High School Accolades
- SuperPrep Mid-Atlantic Defensive Player of the Year
- PrepStar All-American
- No. 44 player in the nation regardless of position by Insiders.com
-N o. 90 player in the nation regardless of position by Tom Lemming
- Consensus position rank: No. 6 DE in the nation
- All-State selection
- Shrine Bowl selection
WR coach John "Doc" Holliday
Mario Williams enters the 2005 season with the most preseason hype of any Wolfpack defender in recent memory. The talented defensive end has already been named to the Bednarik, Lombardi and Nagurski watch lists and was Blue Ribbon College Football's selection as the preseason national defensive player of the year. Arguably, one of the most gifted defensive athletes ever to play for NC State, expectations have gone through the roof for this likely NFL first-rounder. His combination of size, strength, speed and athleticism have made him a marked man around the league with opposing offenses gearing around slowing him down. With fellow NFL-bound players Manny Lawson and John McCargo lining up beside him, offenses will face a nightmarish defensive line that many recognize as the nation's best. Double-digit sacks and 20+ tackles for loss in 2005 will likely solidify Williams as an all-american.
-Perhaps no other NC State player has the potential to come away with more postseason honors than Williams. His every tackle and sack will be watched intently in 2005 and, should he build on his production from 2004, he will come away with numerous league and national awards later in the year.