First and foremost, this video got the goosebumps bumpin’…
This year we shook hands with adversity, played with the cards we were dealt and fought together until the end. We are the NC State Wolfpack. This is a look back at some of the top sports moments of 2021 🐺 #StrengthInThePack pic.twitter.com/EJnREZ7b0A
— NC State Athletics (@PackAthletics) December 30, 2021
There’s a lot to be thankful for in WPN this last year.
Women’s Basketball – Not much more you can ask for…back-to-back ACC Championships, while being top-5 for over two years straight. The players are beyond fun to watch and their coach has rapidly become a legendary figure (who also puts out a solid stream of perfect one-liners). All the Reynolds upgrades are something else, and to have this success as a tenant is a dream that reminds folks of the Jimmy V era.
Wrestling – Speaking of Reynold tenants…Wrestling is doing something that not many people fully understand. The sport has been SO heavily dominated by Big Ten and Ivy League schools. Other than the occasional OK State run, the trophy lives steadily in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic. But things are changing in Raleigh. Recruiting classes have been off the chart, and this year’s squad -from top to bottom – is nothing short of spectacular.
Women’s Cross Country – Always a steady performer, State broke out this Fall. Wins the ACC, Regional and National Championship. The first team national championship since 1983 Cardiac Pack. And the scores weren’t close. The team consistently had a majority of scoring in top-25, top-15 and a wide margin of victory.
Women’s Soccer – Five straight seasons of NCAA Tournament appearances. The also had half a dozen games were they lost to a ranked opponent in literally the final minutes of games. Stellar keeper and steady scoring shows that State program is heading in the right direction and not far from making a BIG jump.
Football – State has at least nine wins in three of the last five seasons. In contention for ACC into the Thanksgiving weekend is something that WPN has been waiting for. Leary and Gill should have far more recognition than they are getting. Tony Gibson not being listed as a semi-finalist of NCAA assistant coaches is a crime. Yet we got to see Ickey play big boy football, while Emezie and Dunn are setting school records. Great comeback against UNC, 10*-3 season.
Swim – Nationally ranked recruiting and national meet podiums. We are very, very close from seeing a number of swimmers, from both men’s and women’s teams, will be in the running for Olympic teams. The program has always been a force, but there aren’t many weaknesses when you look at the full squad.
W Tennis – Got hot and made it all the way to the Final Four. The duo of Anna Rogers and Alana Smith just kept winning. Furthermore, they added great recruits and transfers to make another run again soon.
Baseball – For many of us at PI, we agree…there has been such a ride we’ve maybe ever experienced. To think about the season being lost, then to make the run they had to what SHOULD HAVE BEEN, at the very least, a national championship appearance, is just goosebump worthy. Couldn’t open Twitter or watch TV without seeing talk of State. Can’t wait for Boo to totally not go against his word and build/remodel a ballpark to accommodate a team that should be making runs on a yearly basis.
There are plenty of coaches, players and superfans that should be mentioned. We type this with a warm feeling in our heart. To everybody in WPN, from Raleigh and abroad, thanks for reading our articles and hope you all enjoyed the ride as much as we have.
ACC Commissioner Jim Phillips Sticks up for NC State at ACC Tipoff
The ACC Tipoff has been going on in Charlotte the past two days, and to kick things off, Commissioner Jim Phillips spoke about a variety of topics, but on two occasions he went out of his way to go to bat for NC State.
When talking about how well the ACC did in the Women’s NCAA Basketball Tournament, Philips went out of his way to address the fact that #2 seed NC State had to play #1 UCONN in the Elite Eight…in Connecticut.
“Two of our eight teams last year were No. 1 seeds, four advanced to the Sweet 16, and we were the only conference to have at least three teams in the regional semifinals in each of the last eight NCAA Tournaments. Louisville and NC State each reached the Elite 8, and Louisville advanced to the Final Four.
I won’t say anything about where they sent NC State either this morning.”
At another point, he was addressing the need to expand the NCAA Tournaments, and he specifically spoke to the fact that the Wolfpack Baseball team was snubbed last year, being left out.
“But baseball, I certainly felt like we had several teams that should have gotten in, and in baseball, the team that the committee indicated was the last team in won the National Championship.
I look at NC State in that example where they deserved to be in.”
WPN’s Guide to the Duke-UNC Game
NC State Swimmers a Part of 14 World Championships Medals
The six-day long 15th FINA World Swimming Championships, took place this week in Abu Dhabi. Not only was State well represented, they also won a whole lotta races.
Current and former State swimmers ended up making 14 podium appearances, including three members (two current) winning gold.
Junior Katharine Berkoff won gold in 4×100 freestyle relay and 4×50 freestyle relay. Senior Sophie Hansson won gold in 4×50 medley relay and 4×100 medley relay. State alum, Ryan Held, won gold in 4×200 freestyle relay and 4×50 medley relay.
State swimming returns to action on January 3rd.
WPN Reset: NC State Football Returns More and MBB in Reynolds
It was a calm Wednesday afternoon and then it got exciting REAL quick.
Rumor mill was in peak form the last two weeks, as players were making decisions about their future at State. Within just the last week, Gibson, Leary, Wilson and Ingle have all announced they are coming back. And that list doesn’t include earlier commitments of return from Durden, Moore and Fagan.
— DLeary (@DevinLeary1) December 8, 2021
— Tanner Ingle (@TannerIngle) December 8, 2021
There are still decisions to be made by Gill, Bam, Thayer and others. Without question, State will be losing Ickey, Person and Emezie.
With Doeren’s recent success in the transfer portal, it would seem likely with all the above in motion, some o-line and WR help won’t be hard to find. Here’s to another wild day of announcements. Cheers!
Thursday, State Men’s Basketball returns to the hallowed grounds of Reynolds. We’ll be having PLENTY of stories about Jimmy V, Reynolds’ history, game preview and more. Until then…
Back in Reynolds Coliseum tomorrow ‼️
Heritage Game 🆚 Bethune-Cookman at 6:30 PM pic.twitter.com/5kkvokXSlV
— NC State Men's Bball (@PackMensBball) December 9, 2021