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    Wednesday Football Notebook
    Senior Rashard Smith
    Senior Rashard Smith

    Nov. 27, 2013

    Game 12: NC State Wolfpack vs. Maryland Terrapins
    November 30, 2013 • 12:30 p.m. • ACC Network/ESPN3
    Raleigh, N.C. • Carter-Finley Stadium (57,583)

    The Wolfpack stands one game up on Maryland in the overall series record between the two schools, which dates back over 100 years.  The teams first met on Oct. 30, 1909 and have played every year since 1956.  

    The Pack enters the final meeting of the two schools as ACC opponents with a one-game edge in the overall series, 33-32-4.  State has won the last two matchups with Maryland and three of the last four.

    In the 21st century, the games between NC State and Maryland have been close ones.  Of the last 13 contests between the two teams, five of which the Wolfpack has won, 11 have been decided by 10 points or fewer.  Five of those 13 games have been decided by four or less points and 10 by less than 10 points.  

    Last season, the Pack went ahead on a Niklas Sade field goal with 32 seconds left in the game, and then watched a Maryland FG attempt hit the upright to hold on to a 20-18 victory.  In 2011, State won by 15 points, but had to score 42 unanswered points in the second half to gain the victory in the largest comeback in school history.

    The Wolfpack seniors will be honored in pregame ceremonies on Saturday.  Here’s a look at the State players who will be playing in their final game:

    No. Name Pos.
    68 Evan Bumgarner OL
    76 Deylan Buntyn DT
    14 Jarvis Byrd S
    48 Robert Caldwell LB
    92 Darryl Cato-Bishop DE
    43 Ryan Cheek FB
    62 Duran Christophe OG
    33 Roderick Cox LB
    34 Dominic Deshaies CB
    98 A.J. Ferguson DT
    49 Zach Gentry LB
    31 D.J. Green LB
    41 Milton Hall RB
    25 Dontae Johnson CB/S
    58 Jacob Kahut DL
    8 Brandon Mitchell QB
    88 Quintin Payton WR
    2 Rashard Smith WR
    82 Asa Watson TE
    97 Forrest West DE



    One of the most frustrating, yet promising facts about the Wolfpack’s ACC losses in 2013 is that with the exception of one game (vs. No. 2 Florida State), the score was close late in the game.

    In the Pack’s other ACC contests, the average difference in the score after the third quarter has been just 7.1 points.  In only one game (vs. then No. 3 Clemson) did the Pack trail by more than a touchdown and that was only by 13 points following the third quarter.

    The scores have been even closer than that at other points in the second half.

    One of the bright spots for the offense in recent games has been the play of sophomore tailback Shadrach Thornton.  Thornton, who missed the first game of the season due to a suspension and did not break into the starting lineup until the fourth game of 2013, rushed for a career-high 173 yards at Florida State, including a career-long 72-yard touchdown scamper.  He was also the Pack’s leading receiver in the game with five catches.

    That was the most rushing yards for a Pack player since 2006 and the 18th-best mark all-time.

    Thornton now averages 76.4 rushing yards per game against ACC opponents this season, the fourth-best mark in the league.  

    He now boasts 1,300 career rushing yards after only 20 games.

    The Pack’s passing attack has performed at a season-high mark in the last two games. Against Boston College and East Carolina, NC State has completed 54-of-84 (64.3%) passes for an average of 318.5 per game, eclipsing 300 yards each time out.

    Pete Thomas started the BC game while Brandon Mitchell got the nod versus East Carolina.  Mitchell set career highs with 312 yards and four TD strikes versus the Pirates.

    For the first time all season, the Pack has not thrown an interception in those two contests. Entering the Boston College game, the Pack had thrown 12 interceptions and four TD passes. But against BC and ECU, NC State has seven touchdown passes and no interceptions.

    Also over the past two games, a trio of Pack wide outs have made big plays.

    Player Rec. Yds. TDs
    Rashard Smith 15 138 2
    Jumichael Ramos 10 147 3
    Quintin Payton 7 150 1

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