Local Super Bowl ties
Posted January 31
North Carolina and NC State both have several players representing their universities in Super Bowl XLVIII. As the Seahawks and Broncos face-off Sunday at 6:30 p.m. on FOX50, check out these local players.
- Nate Irving (LB, NC State) Irving was selected 3rd in the 3rd round, 67th overall, by the Denver Broncos in the 2011 NFL Draft. Irving officially signed with the Broncos on Friday, July 29, 2011. The linebacker played at NC State in 2007, '08 and '10. Missing the 2009 season after suffering a separated shoulder, a collapsed lung, cracked ribs and a compound fracture in his left leg during a car accident on June 28, 2009. During his time with the Wolfpack, Irving earned the NCAA FBS record for tackles for loss in a single game with eight. Irving has 41 tackles and one sack for the Broncos this season.
- Sylvester Williams (DT, UNC) Williams enrolled at Carolina in January, 2011, after two seasons at Coffeyville (Kan.) Community College. As a junior in 2011, he had 43 tackles and 2.5 sacks, Williams earned first team All-ACC honors as a senior. The Denver Broncos selected Williams in the first round of the 2013 draft, 28th overall. Williams has notched 19 tackles and two sacks for Denver this season.
- J.R. Sweezy (OG, NC State) Sweezy was selected in the seventh round, 225th overall, by the Seahawks in the 2012 NFL Draft. Sweezy played 35 games with 20 starts along the defensive line at NC State. Posted 86 tackles (65 solo), 22 tackles for loss, 11.0 sacks, 33 quarterback pressures, three passes defended, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries for the Wolfpack. The Seahawks moved Sweezy to the offensive guard position after he was drafted. Sweezy has started in every Seahawks game this season.
- Steven Hauschka (K, NC State) Hauschka was signed by the Minnesota Vikings as an undrafted free agent in 2008. The place kicker spent time with the Baltimore Ravens, Atlanta Falcons, Detroit Lions, UFL's Las Vegas Locomotives and tthe Denver Broncos before claimed off waivers by the Seattle Seahawks on September 4, 2011. Hauschka has made 33 field goals on 35 attempts this season. The kicker only spent one year with NC State as a graduate student after earning his degree from Middlebury College in Neuroscience in 2007. In his one season with the Pack went a perfect 25 for 25 on extra points and 16 for 18 on field goals.
- Russell Wilson (QB, NC State) Wilson spent three years with the Wolfpack (2007-10), where he played football and baseball, before transferring to Wisconsin to end his college career. In 2008, he was named the ACC Rookie of the Year in football and became the first freshman quarterback to receive first team All-ACC honors. Wilson was selected by the Seahawks with the 12th pick in the third round (75th overall) of the 2012 NFL Draft. Wilson has 26 touchdowns on the 2013 season and has thrown for 3,357 yards.
Also of note, former Duke tight end Cooper Helfet is currently on the Seattle Seahawks practice squad. Helfet has spent two years with the team but has not had any game action. Former East Carolina defensive tackle Michael Brooks is in his rookie season with the Seahawks. Brooks is currently on the practice squad but has suited up in one game this season where he notched one tackle.