Gameday: NC State vs. Boston College

NC State (4-4, 2-4) faces Boston College (6-3, 3-3) in a huge game for the Wolfpack. Gametime is set for 7:15, and the contest will be televised on ESPN2.

GameTracker I Premium Chat

Alumni Stadium

NC State (4-4) vs. Boston College (6-3)
7:15 ESPN2
Saturday, November 12, 2005
Chestnut Hill, Mass.

Boston College Links

Official Site

Football Site

Roster

Schedule/Results


Injury Report

NC STATE

FULL
Jeremy Gray, CB -
foot injury
Dwayne Herndon, OG - stinger

QUESTIONABLE
Kalani Heppe, OG -
shoulder separation

OUT
Geron James, WR -
shoulder surgery
John McCargo, DT - foot surgery

Boston College


NONE REPORTED


NC State Game Notes

SECOND-HALF STONE
The most important statistic about quarterback Marcus Stone is a simple one: 2-0. That's the redshirt sophomore's record as the starting signal caller for the Wolfpack, as he has now notched victories against Southern Miss and ninthranked Florida State.

The Southern Miss game was definitely won in the second half (the Wolfpack was down 14-0 in the third quarter) and NC State went into the halftime break in Tallahassee with the score tied, 10-10. One reason for those second-half wins has been the performance of Stone. In the last two games combined, Stone has completed 14% of his first half throws. In the second half, that number goes up to 59%.

BROWN GETS DOWN
True freshman tailback Andre Brown was named the Walter Camp IA National Offensive Player of the Week after the Florida State game - not too shabby for his first career start. Brown rushed for 179 yards on 26 carries against the ninthranked Seminoles, scoring on a 65-yard romp on his first carry of the game.

That performance followed his 248 yards rushing on Oct. 29 in the win over Southern Miss. Brown entered that game with just 42 yards rushing in five games. He now has 469 yards rushing in seven games, the seventh-best mark in the ACC.

Entering the 2005 season, there was much talk about NC State's talented bevy of running backs. Two other tailbacks had started before Brown had his breakout game against Southern Miss. In the last two week's Brown has posted the second-best (248) and 14th-best (179) rushing games in Wolfpack history, with the mark against USM being the best ever by an NC State freshman. Against Southern Miss, Brown also had two receptions for 31 yards, giving him 279 yards of all-purpose yardage. That mark was also the second-best in school history, trailing only Torry Holt's 296 yards versus Baylor in 1998.

THE FIRST TIME'S THE CHARM
The first time Andre Brown touched the ball in the win over Southern Miss, he ran 41 yards and set up a Wolfpack field goal. The first time the freshman tailback touched the ball against Florida State, he ran for 65 yards and a touchdown.

WOLFPACK WINS TWO OF THREE AGAINST RANKED TEAMS
The Florida State game marked the Wolfpack's third against a ranked team this season, as the team lost to eighth-ranked Virginia Tech (16-20) in the season opener, defeated No. 24 Georgia Tech (17-14) and No. 9 Florida State (20-15).

Those three games against ranked teams marks the most in a season for the Wolfpack since 2001, when the team faced four ranked squads. The two victories over ranked teams marks the most for a Wolfpack squad in the regular season since 1998.

DEFENSE BUCKLES DOWN
In the last three games, two of which have been Wolfpack wins, NC State's defense has been back to its 2004 form, when it led the nation in total defense. The opposition has averaged just 232.7 yards of total offense in the last three games and just 65.7 rushing yards.

Florida State was leading the league in total offense heading into last week's contest, averaging a whopping 444.1 yards per game. The Seminoles managed just over half that in the game: 227 yards.

Southern Miss entered the Oct. 29 contest averaging 34.7 points per game, but managed just 17 points and two touchdowns against the Wolfpack. (One of those touchdowns came after the Eagles got the ball at the State 22 following a fumble and the second came after a roughing the kicker call that gave USM a second try after being stopped). In the loss to Wake Forest on Oct. 22, the defense gave up just 13 points (two of the Deacons touchdowns were on interception returns) and scoring two points of its own with a safety. Wake Forest, which has averaged 231 rushing yards in its other seven outings, ran for just 85 yards against the Wolfpack. The defense has tallied 14 sacks and 35 tackles for loss in the last two games.

DAVIS PICKS OFF 'NOLES
Cornerback A.J. Davis likes playing football in the state of Florida. The Durham native played a huge role in the Wolfpack's win at No. 9 Florida State, as he intercepted two passes, both in the second half in NC State territory. The first came in the third quarter, with FSU driving while down 13-10. Davis stepped in front of a Drew Weatherford throw and ran it back 43 yards to set up the Pack's final touchdown. In the fourth quarter, with FSU down just a touchdown and driving, he intercepted another pass at the goalline.

Davis, who set a career-high with nine tackles, had his best outing since the last time he had played in the Sunshine State. In the 2003 Tangerine Bowl versus Kansas, he tallied six tackles, had three PBUs and had an interception, which he ran back 48 yards. Davis had not intercepted a pass since that game, a span of 18 games.

TIGHT END TIME
The tight ends are definitely an important cog in the NC State offense, as tight end T.J. Williams led the team in receiving last season and is doing so again in 2005. But in Saturday's win at Florida State, the tight ends may have played a more pivotal role than ever.

Here's a look at the role of the tight ends in that game and this season:

  • The Wolfpack tight ends accounted for four of the nine receptions against FSU. For the season, they account for 31% (45 of 143) of the total catches.
  • The tight ends (Williams and Anthony Hill) caught all four balls on the two scoring drives in the third quarter. TJ Williams caught his first pass on 2nd & 11, converting for a first down with an 11-yard reception (it was the Wolfpack's first drive of the half, that led to the go ahead 22-yard field goal.) John Ritcher had a 16-yard completion on 3rd & 14 from the Seminole 22. Two plays later Anthony Hill scored his first career touchdown, a 4-yarder that made it 20-10.
  • Hill tallied eight knockdown blocks in the win over the Seminoles, the second-highest mark ever for a Wolfpack tight end and a mark that tied for the highest among all players in that contest.

    MARIO IS A MANIAC
    Junior defensive end Mario Williams has been a demon in the Wolfpack's last three outings, one reason that NC State has allowed an average of just 232.7 yards of total offense in those two contests. Williams set two NC State singlegame records in the win over Southern Miss when he had six tackles for a loss of 16 yards and four sacks for 12 yards. Against WFU, he tallied three sacks and 3.5 tackles for loss.

    In the last three games, Williams has tallied 10.5 tackles for loss and eight sacks. He currently ranks second in the ACC in tackles for loss.

    DEJA BROWN
    Freshman tailbacks named Brown who make their marks in the Wolfpack record books are nothing new at NC State. In fact, this mark the 30th anniversary of the debut of Ted Brown, who went on to become the alltime leading rusher in ACC history with 4,602 yards.

    Ted Brown played on the freshman team in the first four games of the 1975 season, then joined the varsity as the starter in the fifth game against Indiana. In that contest, he gained 121 yards on 17 carries and rushed for two touchdowns. Against Clemson that season, he set a freshman record with 227 rushing yards.

    Three decades later, Andre Brown broke out in his sixth game of action, but had only played 28 snaps from scrimmage until that point. He broke Brown's freshman record with 248 yards and was just four yards shy of breaking Brown's single-game Wolfpack record that he set during his junior campaign. Andre did much better than Ted in his first career start, gaining 179 yards on 26 carries and scoring a touchdown.


    Boston College Game Notes

    BACKGROUND

    Location: Chestnut Hill, Mass.

    Enrollment: 14,500

    Nickname: Eagles

    School Colors: Maroon & Gold

    Stadium: Alumni (44,500)

    Conference: ACC

     

    TEAM

    Head Coach: Tom O'Brien

    Record at BC: 57-39 (8 years)

    2004 Record: 9-3 (4-2)

    2004 Bowl: Tire vs. UNC (W, 37-24)

    Starters Returning: 15 (7 offense, 8 defense)

    2005 Record: 6-3 (3-3)

    2005 Ranking: No. 25

    Senior Day
    Saturday's game will mark the home farewell for 12 senior starters, including WR Will Blackmon, LS Francois Brochu, LB Ricky Brown, LB Ray Henderson, DE Mathias Kiwanuka, WR Larry Lester, TE Chris Miller, QB Quinton Porter, C Patrick Ross, OT Jeremy Trueblood, DT Al Washington and CB Jazzmen Williams.

    This senior class is a combined 32-15 over the past four seasons and could still set the all-time record for victories by a senior class (held by last year's senior class, which went 34-16). They will be honored in pregame ceremonies at Saturday's game.

    First-And-Toal
    Linebacker Brian Toal has served double-duty for the Eagles this season. The true sophomore is third on the team in tackles (29 solos, 18 assists, 6.0 TFL, 2.0 sacks) and has become BC's not-sosecret weapon on offense. Through eight games, Toal has touched the ball 21 times in short-yardage situations. He has scored a touchdown six times to lead the team in that category, including one in overtime that gave BC a 16-13 victory at Clemson and two vs. Virginia, and has picked up a first down on 10 additional occasions. He has been stopped short only five times.

    Tailback Tradition Continues
    Coach Tom O'Brien has made the tailback one of the cornerstones of the BC offense. In each season since 1998, BC has amassed more than 1,000 yards on the ground. Over that span, two Eagles have been consensus All- Americans and BC has had an All-Conference running back in all but one season. This year, L.V. Whitworth (540 yards) and Andre Callender (496 yards) have eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark (1036). From 1998 through 2003, a single running back gained more than 1,000 yards in each season. Last year, Whitworth, Callender and A.J. Brooks combined for 1,648 yards.

    Silva is Golden
    There's a new leader at the top of BC's defensive statistics - free safety Jamie Silva, who now has 65 tackles (47 solos, 18 assists). Silva shot to the top of BC's defensive stats following the best two weeks of his career; he registered a career-best 14 solo tackles vs. Virginia and then had 11 total tackles, including nine solos, in the Eagles' 35-30 win over Wake Forest.

    For his efforts in the Wake Forest game, he was honored as one of the ACC Players of the Week. He had eight tackles against Virginia Tech and 11 this past week at North Carolina. Jamie's older brother, Steve Silva, is an outstanding running back and team captain for Holy Cross.

    Bowled Over
    Under Tom O'Brien, BC has gone to a school-record six consecutive bowl games and has won five in a row; the Eagles are the only team in America to have won bowl games the past five years in a row. They are now bowleligible for the seventh consecutive season. With a 10-6 all-time bowl game record, Boston College is fourth all-time in bowl game winning percentage (.625) among teams with at least 15 bowl appearances.

    Triple Threat
    Senior speedster Will Blackmon, a defensive back and return specialist in each of his first three years, has made the transition from defense to offense for his senior season and passed the test. A preseason All-America secondteam selection and number two kick-return man in the nation according to The Sporting News, Blackmon moved from cornerback to wide receiver during spring drills. In 2004, the All-Big East second-team selection became the first player in Boston College history to return a kickoff and punt for touchdowns in the same season and finished eighth among Division IA players with 28 kickoff returns for 762 yards (27.2 avg.) and one touchdown.

    Veteran Staff At The Helm
    BC's coaching staff is now in its third season completely intact. In the nine-year Tom O'Brien era at The Heights, four coaches – O'Brien, Jerry Petercuskie (recruiting/special teams), Frank Spaziani (defensive coordinator) and Don Horton (offensive line) – are in their ninth season. Dana Bible (offensive coordinator/ quarterbacks/wide receivers) and Jason Swepson (running backs) are each in their seventh year. Bill McGovern (linebackers) is in his sixth season. Keith Willis (defensive line) is in his fifth while two coaches – Kevin Lempa (defensive backs) and Jim Bridge (tight ends) – are each in their third season.

    Captain Ross Is The Anchor
    Co-captain Patrick Ross has upheld the Eagles' tradition of excellence at the center position. Ross, whose predecessors include New England Patriot Dan Koppen and Detroit Lion Damien Woody, has made 32 consecutive starts at center and was an all-conference second-team pick last season. The six-foot, four-inch senior from Cincinnati, Ohio, has helped pave the way for the Eagles' rushing attack to gain more 4,000 yards and, as a reward for his efforts, Ross has been named to the 2005 Dave Rimington Trophy watch list.

    The ACC's Biggest O-Line
    At a school known for some outstanding offensive lines, the fact that all five starters from a year ago returned is of no small significance. Between them, right tackle Gosder Cherilus, right guard Josh Beekman, center Patrick Ross, left guard James Marten and left tackle Jeremy Trueblood weight 1,586 pounds. Boston College has established a solid reputation for producing NFL talent on the offensive line in recent years. Over the last seven seasons, seven BC offensive linemen have been drafted by the NFL. The list includes Chris Snee, Dan Koppen, Marc Colombo, Paul Zukauskas, Darnell Alford, Doug Brzezinski and Damien Woody.


    Press Conference Quotables

    Head Coach Tom O'Brien
    We will turn our attention now to North Carolina State. It's senior day at BC and we have a lot of kids who are playing in their last home football game. It'll be a night game on ESPN2, so it will be a national audience and I know that our students and our fans will come out and support Mathias [Kiwanuka] and Will Blackmon and all the rest of the seniors who will be playing in their last game. We need to get back on track this week. We need to get back the things that we were successful at earlier in the season. It should be a great night for football Saturday night.

    On the quarterback decision and how it came to be:
    Matt Ryan will start. It wasn't any one thing. It was a compilation of things that happened over the last couple games. I think right now, Matt [Ryan] gives us the best chance to win so he will be the starter.

    On the difficulty of the decision:
    It always is. But, I think it is a decision that has to be made.

    On anything that taken out of the game against North Carolina:
    I think the difference is we have to respect how tough this conference is. I think we got to a point where we were 6-1 and thought we were a pretty good football team. We haven't played for two weeks now like we did with that edge in the first six or seven games. We have to get that edge back and if we can get that edge back -- and that's what we have to concentrate on this week in practice -- then, we're going to give ourselves a chance. This is a very difficult league. It's very difficult to win in this league as a lot of teams are even and there is just a small fraction that separates teams. Right now, we have lost that small fraction and we need to get it back.

    On Matt Ryan's growth in the last year:
    Last year, he never played. That [Syracuse game] was his first game. He came in the second half at Temple. That is one thing. To prepare and start a game is a whole different situation. He has done that. Not only last year, but he has done it at Clemson and done it at Ball State. He came in at the end of Wake Forest and made something happen. He came at the end of North Carolina and made something happen. He is much different in terms of his maturity. He is much different in terms of his confidence. Hopefully, he will be the spark that we need to get the offense going.

    On North Carolina State:
    I think they regained it somewhere in the game against Southern Miss. They have a tremendous back. He looks like William Green, but about 30 pounds heavier. He is that big and that fast. They have huge tight ends. The made a quarterback change a few weeks ago and that proved to be an improvement to their offense. In talking to everyone in the conference, they have the best defensive football team in this conference. Hands down, personnel wise. Their front four to the linebackers and the speed that they play with in the secondary. It will be a big challenge. That's why I think if we get our edge back and come home to a home stadium that is rocking and people are going to send Mathias [Kiwanuka] and the boys out on the right note, those things will come in our favor.


    Boston College Two-Deep Depth Chart

    Offense

    WR 1 Will Blackmon . . . . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . .200 . . . . .Sr.

    82 Jason Lilly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-2 . . . . . .214 . . . . .Jr.

    LT 72 Jeremy Trueblood . . . . . . . . .6-9 . . . . . .321 . . . . .Sr.

    74 Ryan Poles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-4 . . . . . .310 . . . . .So.

    LG 70 James Marten . . . . . . . . . . . .6-8 . . . . . .315 . . . . .Jr.

    63 Shadu Moore . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-2 . . . . . .280 . . . . .Jr.

    C 66 Patrick Ross . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-4 . . . . . .298 . . . . .Sr.

    61 Kevin Sheridan . . . . . . . . . . . .6-3 . . . . . .296 . . . . .So.

    RG 75 Josh Beekman . . . . . . . . . . . .6-2 . . . . . .325 . . . . .Jr.

    67 Tom Anevski . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-4 . . . . . .301 . . . . .So.

    RT 77 Gosder Cherilus . . . . . . . . . .6-7 . . . . . .320 . . . . .So.

    78 Ty Hall . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-5 . . . . . .296 . . . . .So.

    TE 88 Chris Miller . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-5 . . . . . .269 . . . . .Sr.

    85 Ryan Thompson . . . . . . . . . . .6-4 . . . . . .254 . . . . .So.

    WR 6 Larry Lester . . . . . . . . . . . . .5-8 . . . . . .180 . . . . .Sr.

    26 Tony Gonzalez . . . . . . . . . . . .5-11 . . . . .190 . . . . .Jr.

    QB 12 Matthew Ryan . . . . . . . . . . .6-5 . . . . . .221 . . . . .So.

    15 Quinton Porter . . . . . . . . . . . .6-5 . . . . . .232 . . . . .Sr.

    FB 47 Paddy Lynch . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-2 . . . . . .241 . . . . .Jr.

    33 Tom Walls . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . .232 . . . . .R-Fr.

    TB 30 L.V. Whitworth . . . . . . . . . . .6-0 . . . . . .220 . . . . .So.

    32 Andre Callender . . . . . . . . . . .5-11 . . . . .204 . . . . .So.

    Defense

    LE 94 Mathias Kiwanuka . . . . . . . .6-7 . . . . . .262 . . . . .Sr.

    53 Jeff Burns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-4 . . . . . .251 . . . . .Jr.

    LT 56 Alvin Washington . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . .288 . . . . .Sr.

    60 Ron Brace . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-3 . . . . . .343 . . . . .R-Fr.

    RT 90 B.J. Raji . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . .337 . . . . .So.

    93 Keith Willis . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . .266 . . . . .R-Fr.

    RE 57 Nick Larkin . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-4 . . . . . .252 . . . . .So.

    86 Jim Ramella . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-4 . . . . . .244 . . . . .Fr.

    LB 55 Ricky Brown . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-2 . . . . . .235 . . . . .Sr.

    48 Tyronne Pruitt . . . . . . . . . . . . .5-11 . . . . .218 . . . . .So.

    LB 3 Ray Henderson . . . . . . . . . . .6-3 . . . . . .245 . . . . .Sr.

    40 Jolonn Dunbar . . . . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . .224 . . . . .So.

    LB 16 Brian Toal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . .238 . . . . .So.

    35 Robert Francois . . . . . . . . . . .6-2 . . . . . .235 . . . . .R-Fr.

    SS 24 Ryan Glasper . . . . . . . . . . . .6-0 . . . . . .207 . . . . .Jr.

    19 Paul Anderson . . . . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . .207 . . . . .Fr.

    FS 44 Jamie Silva . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5-11 . . . . .205 . . . . .So.

    9 Larry Anam . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-0 . . . . . .192 . . . . .Jr.

    CB 27 DeJuan Tribble . . . . . . . . . . .5-9 . . . . . .189 . . . . .So.

    29 Taji Morris . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5-10 . . . . .184 . . . . .So.

    CB 4 Jazzmen Williams . . . . . . . . .5-8 . . . . . .179 . . . . .Sr.

    7 Kevin Akins . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-2 . . . . . .205 . . . . .R-Fr.

    Specialists

    PK 39 William Troost . . . . . . . . . .5-9 . . . . . . .154 . . . . . .Sr.

    20 Ryan Ohliger . . . . . . . . . . . .5-9 . . . . . . .197 . . . . . .So.

    P 46 Johnny Ayers . . . . . . . . . . .6-0 . . . . . . .186 . . . . . .So.

    LS 81 Francois Brochu . . . . . . . .6-6 . . . . . . .247 . . . . . .Sr.

    H 46 Johnny Ayers . . . . . . . . . . .6-0 . . . . . . .186 . . . . . .So.

    or 12 Matthew Ryan . . . . . . . . . . .6-5 . . . . . . .221 . . . . . .So.

    PR 1 Will Blackmon . . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . . .200 . . . . . .Sr.

    27 DeJuan Tribble . . . . . . . . . .5-9 . . . . . . .189 . . . . . .So.

    KR 1 Will Blackmon . . . . . . . . . .6-1 . . . . . . .200 . . . . . .Sr.

    32 Andre Callender . . . . . . . . . .5-11 . . . . . .204 . . . . . .So.


    Hit up the Premium Chat: Not attending the game? Chat Live in the PackPride.com Premium Chat Room via the "Join Live Chat" Link. This service is available for premium subscribers and follow the game play-by-play with other Wolfpack fans!


    Thanks to NC State and Boston College athletics for much of the information in this preview.


  • Pack Pride Top Stories