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Give Me (A Win Over) Liberty Or Give Me Death

September 2, 2011

Game day is finally here, ending an offseason filled with much consternation, ballyhoo, tomfoolery and other funny words to describe State's quarterback situation.

If I may be allowed to channel my inner "coach speak," I think this game is the most important on the schedule (until the next game, of course).

Liberty's better than most folks probably give them credit for. They have a fantastic quarterback–Mike Brown, 6'1" 205 lbs.– whom Tom O'Brien compared to UCF's Jeff Godfrey earlier this week on 99.9 The Fan. Recalling how silly Godfrey made our defense look at times in last year's game gives me the chills.

While I think State's high-major-level talent and size will eventually wear down the FCS-level players of the Flames, you don't want to ever give a team hope by digging a hole early. It'll be critical (obviously) for Mike Glennon and the offense of State to come out strong and set the tone early. That means scoring a touchdown on the opening drive of the game–three points or giving the ball back to Liberty without scoring won't do.

But if we can put on our Debbie Downer hats for a second: what if the unthinkable happened? What if State did get caught with their pants down and get upset? At home…with a new quarterback…who replaced a legend…who also still happens to still be playing at another, stronger program?

It would be a nightmare, obviously. The unfair comparisons between Mike Glennon and Russell Wilson have already begun, and a loss to an FCS program in Glennon's first start–regardless of how he actually performs–would amplify the puzzled queries we already hear from folks locally and nationally. They'll scream, "Why DID NC State's Tom O'Brien send Russell Wilson packing, exactly?"

It's been hashed and re-hashed ad infinitem, but ultimately I agree with coach O'Brien's decision because I feel, knowing what we know of Tom and as much as we can gather about the situation, it was the better of two tough options. I think most reasonable sports fans, when presented with all the facts, would either understand the decision or, in the least, understand understand the thought process even if you disagree with him.

But unfortunately, most folks will only see the spectacular things Wilson does and marvel at him–they couldn't care less about concerning themselves with the ins and outs of why Glennon's here and Russell's not. And that's why I dread losing this game–the immediate, swift, irrational mocking of State's program from people with pulpits, aka the media, who probably should know better. Death might be preferable to spending the rest of the season listening to that same ill-informed opinion echoed. If there's anything I can't stand more than our program being viewed as a joke, it's that same opinon made by reporters and fans repeatedly and regularly.

Eh…I'm making a mountain out of a molehill, I'm sure. The spread is 29, last I checked, so there's no reason to believe the Flames have a shot, Mike Brown or no Mike Brown. Honestly, I just wanted a good excuse to use a Patrick Henry quote in a headline.

Still, better teams than State have lost to worse teams than Liberty before. If the unthinkable happens, you'll know where to find me: the morgue. 

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Pack75CEC permalink
    September 3, 2011 6:02 am

    Along the unthinkable  line, at the very least you’ll be in a catatonic state along with thousands of other Wolfpack

    • Anonymous permalink*
      September 3, 2011 3:35 pm

      Yep. Misery truly loves company.

  2. September 3, 2011 1:38 pm

    I am a die-hard STATE fan; but I did play NG for Liberty ’85-’88. I cracks me up to see Liberty running a 3-4 defense with a 6’5″ NG who weighs-in at 380 lbs. In comparison, I played at 6’2″ and a paltry 235 lbs – soaking wet. Glad to see Liberty recruiting true I-AA players.
    Regardless, it’s going to get ugly for the Flamers at the Carter today. Guarantee it.

    • Anonymous permalink*
      September 3, 2011 3:34 pm

      Very cool story! 

      The growth in the size of players across all levels of football over the last 30 years is pretty amazing. There are linebackers that crack 280. In fact, there’s a certain former monster of a State player trying to do just that with the Houston Texans.

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