Sunday, December 5, 2010

Wolfpack team, fan base contributed to strong bowl pick

The fact that N.C. State wound up in the Champs Sports Bowl says a great deal about how this team and the Wolfpack fan base are viewed.

Virginia Tech was headed to the Orange Bowl - that was a given. And Florida State fit the ACC's No. 2 bowl, the Chick-fil-A. That left the Champs picking third, and looking at a Wolfpack team that is 8-4 overall and 5-3 in league play.

By ACC rules, the Champs could take any team within one game in the ACC standings of the highest remaining team. Maryland, N.C. State and Miami were 5-3 in ACC play, and Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Boston College and Clemson were all 4-4. But Maryland doesn't travel and Miami is in disarray.  So State, with an exciting quarterback and a program thrilled to be back in the bowl picture, made sense.

By the way, here were the order of selections for the ACC's remaining bowls:
No. 4 - the Sun took Miami
No. 5 - the Meineke Car Care took Clemson, in part because UNC has made so many Charlotte appearances
No. 6 - the Music City took Carolina
No. 7 - the Independence Bowl took Georgia Tech
No. 8 - the Military Bowl in Washington, D.C., got a boost with an 8-4 Maryland team to pair with East Carolina
No. 9 - Boston College, as always, got shipped to San Francisco for the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl.

By the way, if you wanted an illustration of why Tom O'Brien left Boston College, this was it. N.C. State, with a big fan base, gets a high bowl and Boston College, as is often the case, gets the left-overs.

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