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Wolferetti: You ready for tonight’s NC State vs. Miami game to be canceled?



It’s late December, and you know what that means. It’s Covid Cancellation Season!

Yesterday we learned at the last minute that NC State’s bowl game vs. UCLA was going to be canceled because of Covid. We also learned earlier in the week that Duke vs. Clemson, UNC vs. VT and BC vs. FSU basketball games were being postponed for the same reason.

So we sit and wait (until the last minute) to see if NC State’s game tonight vs. Miami will have the same fate.

Now, at this moment there isn’t any talk about the game being canceled, there are no reports of Covid cases for either team. But as the old adage goes “Fool me once, shame on.. you? Fool me …. can’t get fooled again.”

Our baseball team was ripped of a chance at the National Championship thanks to Covid protocols. Our football team was ripped of a chance at a 10 win season thanks to Covid protocols. Our basketball team kicked this whole damn pandemic off with their ACC Tournament game cancellation (just minutes before tip) in March of 2020. So do you really think we’re going to see this game played?

Look, maybe it gets played and maybe not, but me, I’m over it. It’s time to suck it up and play ball.

But Wolferetti, you’re killing people!

Let’s get a little consistency here, folks. The pandemic is constantly moving and changing. Those who want to cheer on these cancellations for the sake of safety had a point two years ago, and hell, they may have had a point last season. But this year, you’re just regurgitating old talking points.

Why are you canceling games right now? Unless you can’t field enough guys to take the field/court, the games should go on.  What is the excuse? “An abundance of safety?”, “We don’t know enough about the virus?”

We’re two years in, people. The virus that took its toll in 2020 and early 2021 isn’t the same virus. It’s not nearly as lethal and it’s not producing near as many bad outcomes.  The numbers are there, right in your face. They’ve changed, and so should you.

The NFL has. They changed their protocols to reflect the current situation and so should the NCAA.

These are 18-21-year-old healthy kids. They are almost all vaccinated. They are now back from their holidays with their family. They are isolated from those at risk and they, themselves, are at almost no risk of serious outcomes if they do contract the virus. But hey, if a player wants to opt-out, let them. If you, the fans, want to stay home and not attend a game, please do so. But it’s time to move on and transition protocols to reflect the risk profile.

We know this virus isn’t going away. We know the new variant isn’t nearly as serious as the prior variants. We know healthy college kids aren’t at high risk of bad outcomes. So when does the NCAA stop acting like we’re stuck in 2020?

Just a few years ago I know a lot of you people were cheering on Michael Jordan’s ‘flu game’ as one of the bravest and heroic performances in the history of basketball. Today he’d be crucified on social media as a disgusting, selfish, super spreader with no regard for human life.

You want me to put conditions on my column? You want me to tell you that I know the virus is real. You want me to say I know it kills people. Fine, there it is. The fact that some of you need that is insane. Outside of a few idiots on Twitter, everyone knows these things despite what your favorite news channel is telling you about those who want protocols that rely on logic.

I get it. You get it. So let’s stop with this ‘holier than thou’ concern trolling. Canceling a game isn’t going to ‘stop the spread.’ It’s not going to get us to COVID zero. It’s’ just going to keep robbing kids of some of the best moments of their lives. The scales have tipped. The risk is not greater than the reward anymore.

It’s time to move on. It’s time to follow the NFL and change the protocols. If you’re sick, go home. If you’re concerned about being sick, go home. If you feel fine, have no symptoms, test negative, and want to take the court, then get out there. If a team has enough players to play, they play. If they have enough players to play, and those players want to play, but the school wants to pull out to be cautious? Fine, then go home, but take a forfeit loss with you.

Let the kids play.


A pasta eatin', Wolfpack lovin' loudmouth from Raleigh by way of New Jersey. Jimmy V and Chuck Amato fanboy. All opinions are my own and you're gonna hear'em.

NC State Basketball

NC State’s Ebe Dowuona Enters Transfer Portal



NC State Junior F/C Ebe Dowuona has entered the transfer portal, with two years of eligibility remaining.

This year, Ebe played in 30 games, averaging 1.7 points and 1.9 rebounds in 10.9 minutes per game. As a Sophomore, after the injury to Manny Bates in the first game of the season, Dowuona went on to start in 27 of the 31 games he played in, averaging 4.1 points and 4.1 rebounds per game.

I’m not shocked. I don’t blame Dowuona for wanting to find a place where he would get more playing time.

Nonetheless this is a hit to the Wolfpack’s front court. While he didn’t offer much on the offensive end, he continually altered shots on the defensive end.

Ernest Ross will be a Junior next year, and fans will likely get to see Freshman Isaiah Miranda for the first time after redshirting after arriving to Raleigh midseason. Greg Gantt will be a Redshirt Junior next season as well.

Other questions loom for the Wolfpack front court as well. Will DJ Burns and Jack Clark return for their final year of eligibility? Will Dusan Mahorcic be granted a medical waiver for an additional year of eligibility?

Time will tell.

We wish Ebe all the best!

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NC State Basketball

NC State Ranked in Top-25 in Men’s Basketball Attendance in 2022-23



When it was all said and done, the NC State fans represented in 2022-23, ranking 20th amongst Division-1 teams in Men’s Basketball attendance. The Wolfpack ranked 4th in the ACC, behind UNC, Syracuse, and Virginia.


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NC State Basketball

Wolferetti: Feed me my crow. NC State lost to Creighton and I’m here to break it down (and admit I was wrong)



I was wrong.

I thought this matchup was a good one for NC State. I watched a lot of Creighton this year and to me, they looked like a team that NC State could roll over. Let me explain why.

I knew a few things. I knew Nembhard was a PG that could get a little out of control if sped up. I knew with a little defense and physicality, Sheierman could be made uncomfortable. I knew Kalkbrenner was a good defender but was going to sink on the pick-and-roll to protect the basket.

Joiner’s pull up just wouldn’t fall

I figured that Joiner, the pull-up king would be taking that DJ Burns screen, getting to the middle, and pulling up as Kalkbrenner sank. I figured Smith would exploit this as well. Well, turns out Joiner was off and couldn’t get his pull-up game going and Smith, well yeah Smith did exploit this pretty well.

Burns didn’t look like Burns

The other thing I’d figure would happen is that I thought DJ Burns would really frustrate Kalkbrenner. If you’ve looked at games where Kalkbrenner had to face a really good, physical back-to-the-basket big man, those bigs usually had pretty good games in the scoring column.  I honestly don’t understand what happened to Burns in this one. Sure he got a few stupid early fouls, but before he even picked up a foul he looked out of it. With no double teams coming, Burns is usually calculated, slowly backing you down and hitting you with a flurry of head fakes, pump fakes or spins. If the big doesn’t bite, Burns can fade away, go with a contested hook shot, or pass out.

In this game, Burns looked sped up for some reason. The first time he got the ball he quickly backed in and threw up a hook that rattled out. Not awful, but usually you see him probe a little more. Then the next time he didn’t even look for contact, instead, he threw up a little floater that didn’t fall. While neither were awful shots, both were uncharacteristic of Burns. On top of those things, he looked absolutely gassed within minutes of coming in. My guess is that it was the altitude, but either way, it took a toll on him.

Whatever it was, it had him frustrated and he had two really bad fouls where he just shoved Kalkbrenner (he also had a phantom foul that was ridiculous). That said, it just wasn’t his night and this made NC State a lot more one-dimensional.

Casey Morsell came to play, but this NC State roster just wasn’t built to get a guy like him going, which is a shame. Jarkel Joiner was a huge reason why NC State got to where they got. His scoring ability, his speed and his toughness and leadership skill were huge. But Joiner is a scoring guard, and great basketball teams need POINT guards.

What is a point guard, and why can’t we have one?

A point guard isn’t just a guy who dribbles it down. It’s a guy who understands the games within the games. Guys who dictate pace, call plays (sets) and are essentially coaches on the floor. NC State and Kevin Keatts never had that this season, and while you can get a long way with scoring guards and good big men, you’ll never compete for anything of worth until you prioritize the skill set of a true point guard. I think that has been NC State’s problem for years, and I find it kind of insane that coach after coach falls into this idea of having a scoring guard play as a PG for more offense to get on the court.

This is no shot at Jarkel, either. The guy was one of my favorite players to watch on this team, but it just is what it is. He is a scoring guard who happens to be slotting in at PG. When you see Keatts bring in a guy whose priority is getting his guys open and dictating pace, then you can start to believe that this program may be close to arriving. Until then, sneaking into the tournament and hoping guys get hot hands is as good as it gets.

Look at Kihei Clark (Virginia’s PG). I know it’s not a great time to be talking about Clark, whose errant pass ended up losing the game for Virginia on Thursday, but look at Clark’s build.5’10, 170lbs. Look at his stats. Mid-30s shooting % from 3. Hight 70s from the FT line. The guy is nothing special when it comes to the numbers, but he’s a leader and he distributes the basketball to the right guys at the right time. Tony Bennett has started Clark for 4 years despite the fact that he’s coaching a team that is always in the running to win the ACC and won a national championship less than 5 years ago.  He could replace Clark with an elite, tall, athlete at any moment. But he doesn’t. Why? Because he understands what I’m talking about. It’s a puzzle that coaches need to put together, and one piece of that puzzle is a guy like this.

I was wrong about this game. I thought things would play out differently. They didn’t. I’m not blaming anyone in particular, but the makeup of this team vs. the makeup of teams that play deep into March are different. Maybe this is step one to getting there. We’ll have to see how the roster shapes up next season.

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NC State Basketball

VIDEO: NC State falls to Creighton 72-63 in first round of NCAA Tournament | Extended Highlights & Box Score

NC State came out flat, DJ Burns looked gassed, and for the most part, the Pack looked shell-shocked vs. Creighton from the opening tip. However, Terquavion Smith is excluded from all of that. He was amazing and in what was likely his final game at NC State, he kept the Pack afloat, dropping 32 points on 12-25 shooting. In the end, it wasn’t enough as their big man, 7’1 Ryan Kalkbrenner went for 31.



NC State came out flat, DJ Burns looked gassed, and for the most part, the Pack looked shell-shocked vs. Creighton from the opening tip. However, Terquavion Smith is excluded from all of that. He was amazing and in what was likely his final game at NC State, he kept the Pack afloat, dropping 32 points on 12-25 shooting. In the end, it wasn’t enough as their big man, 7’1 Ryan Kalkbrenner went for 31.

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