Joe Ovies

Talking points: Sloppy Pack torch division hopes

Posted November 3, 2012

1. Another week, another contest where NC State did not appear ready following the opening kickoff. Unlike previous weeks, the Wolfpack never shook their malaise and failed to stage a comeback against Virginia. 

After the Cavaliers opened up a quick 14-0 lead, NC State’s defense eventually settled down in the 2nd quarter and forced five straight 3-and-outs and kept Virginia out of the endzone before halftime. 

Slight problem -- Mike Glennon and the offense were ineffective all afternoon. Without sustained drives, the defense found themselves back on the field and eventually wore down. 

2.  NC State’s offensive output: 8 punts, 3 interceptions, 2 fumbles lost, turned over on downs twice and a safety.  Virginia vs. NC State Slideshow: Cavs dump NC State, 33-6

The running game was non-existent with Shadrach Thornton and Tony Creecy combining for 41 yards on 14 carries. The Wolfpack continued to make it difficult on themselves with penalties that created long down situations and dropped passes. Yes, dropped passes. Stop me if you've heard that one before.

Virginia had one of the worst turnover margins in the country, forcing only 4 turnovers in 8 games. The Cavaliers surpassed their season total in a single afternoon against the Wolfpack. 

After a week of positive NFL Draft buzz, Glennon had a game to forget thanks in large part to Virginia’s pressure. The Cavaliers had only brought down a quarterback seven times in the previous 8 games, but they sacked Glennon five times on Saturday. 

3. The lack of discipline really hurt on special teams, where the Wolfpack had two punts marred by blocks in the back. The safety was a direct result of NC State costing themselves around 80 yards of field position. 

4. Virginia simply did a better job executing their game plan and setting the tempo. There were specific instances where NC State whiffed because the effort lacked, the Cavaliers dictated play or both.  

On Virginia’s first touchdown, David Amerson left fans and broadcasters scratching their heads as he failed to be the aggressor on Phillip Sims. Rather than attempting a tackle on the scrambling quarterback, Amerson froze near the goal line. It’s possible he was anticipating a last second toss over his head, but Amerson will be questioned for not engaging Sims until it was too late. 

With NC State still stuck in a general haze after halftime, Virginia head coach Mike London landed a couple of punches on 4th down plays for the eventual knockout. 

On their first drive of the 3rd quarter, Kevin Parks ran 2 yards for a fresh set of downs on the NC State 38-yard line and Sims threw a touchdown on the next play. The Cavaliers went for it again on 4th down from the Wolfpack 31-yard line with just under 5 minutes to play, which resulted in a touchdown run by Parks. 

5. The listless performance by NC State comes as a surprise following a week of positive rhetoric from their head coach. O’Brien said his team was angry after the loss to North Carolina and that they weren’t finished with the season. The Wolfpack were not completely shut out of the Atlantic Division race either, a point O’Brien was quick to make at his weekly press conference.   N.C. State Logo More NCSU Stories

“Even though we've lost the hammer, we haven't lost anything because we still have to play and make Florida State win 7 games,” said O’Brien. “If they don't win 7 games, then we're right back there. Our key is to make sure we don't lose sight of that.”

Except that’s exactly what they did against Virginia. Now the division is completely out of the picture and the season will sputter along to another mid-level bowl at best.

Because NC State insists on putting fans through a rollercoaster of emotions, it wouldn’t be shocking to see them reel off a 3-game winning streak. This team was capable of beating Florida State, so why couldn’t put together a great game against Clemson? It would be the most Wolfpack thing ever, but the players still need to buy in for that to happen.

As the season gets away from NC State, that'll be the focus of attention. Is the motivation still there to play out the string? 


This blogpost is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • jandscroom Nov 5, 6:04 p.m.

    Time to stop talking about division hopes there is always next year

    — Posted by iron fist

    BCS bowl - negative
    Division Crown - negative
    Beat UNC - negative

    — Posted by sportznut628

    If you posted that from my benefit FYI I am not a Pack fan

    — Posted by iron fist

    UNC...bowl game...NEGATIVE!! And still in High School in NORTH CAROLINA want to go to carolina. If State had been as crooked as they have been,they would not win 5 games in the next three years with all reject recruits!

  • BeastOnTheHill Nov 5, 11:20 a.m.

    It was the refs and Swofford. And Gary Williams. Make no mistake about it. State would have at... View More

    — Posted by Hans

    Natty's??? As in 3 bottles of ice cold Natty Lights??? I'm all for them!!!

    — Posted by jayparks0228

    +1 good & cold!

  • Runt over again Nov 5, 9:26 a.m.

    Fire his sorry worthless azz.

  • dragline Nov 5, 8:58 a.m.

    There need to be a coaching change...bottom line

  • PacknoPride Nov 4, 3:43 p.m.

    I acutually found TOB's post game comments.

  • StunGunn Nov 4, 2:55 p.m.

    I am officially a member of the Tom O'Brien not-a-fan club. I don't know where we go from here,... View More

    — Posted by sbeagler223

    "NFL caliber coach"? Butch Davis will get you his resume.

    I did see that laughing on... View More

    — Posted by Dr. Feelgood

    That's some cast of characters, Dr.: "Scotty Twist", "Badger", "Marco", and my favorite "Nips". What a crew:)

  • ACC22 Nov 4, 9:56 a.m.

    Did anybody listen to Opie's post-game comments? Did he blame the wind again?

    — Posted by still heelman1973

    No he just started crying when UVA's record was mentioned. Cry Cry Baby!

  • jayparks0228 Nov 4, 9:12 a.m.

    It's a sad day when Virginia beats anyone in football. lol!!

    — Posted by Obamacare prevails

    Everyone has their own opinion!

    — Posted by ed taylor

    The 'Hoos brought the wood to CFS and took the 'Moos to the woodshed!!! It was all UVA on Saturday!!!

  • snapjack Nov 4, 9:11 a.m.

    it's simple, the season is over for them after the loss to UNC. That is all they ever play for,... View More

    — Posted by BeastOnTheHill

    State got very lucky in some of those wins and started to think they were actually the better team! Karma is biting them big time now.

  • jayparks0228 Nov 4, 9:10 a.m.

    It was the refs and Swofford. And Gary Williams. Make no mistake about it. State would have at... View More

    — Posted by Hans

    Natty's??? As in 3 bottles of ice cold Natty Lights??? I'm all for them!!!




  • Sun Bowl: Duke vs. Arizona State

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Teams TBD

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Panthers vs. Falcons

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on FOX50

  • NFL: Oakland at Denver

    Sunday at 4:25 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CBB: Louisiana Tech at NC State

    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on WRAL-FM

  • NHL: Hurricanes at Devils

    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • Hawaii Bowl: Fresno State vs. Rice

    Wednesday at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

GSW 51
SAC 35
NEV 54
HOU 20
BSU 31
1st Intermission