Wolfpack win makes day-long wait worthwhile for fans
Posted January 26, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — North Carolina State University rewarded loyal fans, some of whom spent all day at PNC Arena with a win Saturday night over the visiting Tar Heels, 91-83.
Fans braved frigid temperatures and icy Triangle roadways early Saturday to line up for access to ESPN's College GameDay broadcast. GameDay allots a section near the court at one high-profile game each week, and a limited number of fans get to show their school spirit in the background of shots seen on national television.
Fans were featured cheering on NC State head coach Mark Gottfried as he joined host Rece Davis and analysts Jay Bilas, Jalen Rose and Digger Phelps on set Saturday morning. From 11 a.m. to noon, the show was broadcast nationwide on ESPN.
ESPN's presence served to amplify the already electric atmosphere for Wolfpack fans, who cheered their team to its first victory over the University of North Carolina in 14 tries.
Hector Ray is a red-blooded State fan. His wife Sheryl bleeds Carolina blue. With them at the game Saturday were their three children, all of them in blue, too.
"It makes this week fun. It adds a little bit of extra rivalry around the house," he said.
The Tar Heels hold an overwhelming advantage (147-76) in the 224 times the teams have met, but that didn't matter Saturday night, as jubilant State fans poured out of PNC Arena.
The Wolfpack (16-4, 5-2 ACC) have beaten both Tobacco Road rivals this year and are ranked 18th in the nation. They have one more shot at UNC, Feb. 23 in Chapel Hill, and at No. 1-ranked Duke University, Feb. 7.