The Wolfpacker

January 2022

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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Page 23 of 51

24 ■ THE WOLFPACKER A YEAR TO REMEMBER NC State Football Provided Many Thrills In 2021 BY MATT CARTER ead coach Dave Doeren's squad fin- ished the regular season 9-3 overall and 6-2 in the ACC, and is headed to play in the San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl Dec. 28 against UCLA. It is the seventh bowl trip in nine seasons under Doeren, but there may not be a more memorable campaign in his near-decade- long tenure. NC State ended the regular season ranked No. 18 in all three of the major polls — the College Football Play- off Selection Committee (which in- cluded Wolfpack director of athletics Boo Corrigan), the Associated Press and the coaches. Along the way NC State almost im- probably overcame a slew of injuries on its defense to field one of the best units on that side of the football in the ACC, and pro- vided a series of dramatic wins at Carter-Finley Stadium. Here are some of the best moments from the regular season: Offensive MVP NC State appropriately stakes its claim as QBU. And never in its illustrious history of signal-callers — which includes multiple successful NFL quarterbacks like Roman Gabriel, Erik Kramer, Philip Rivers and Russell Wilson, and other pros including Jacoby Brissett, Mike Glennon and Ryan Finley — has someone thrown more touchdown passes in one season than redshirt junior Devin Leary has tossed in 2021. And he still has one more game to go. Leary finished the regular season completing 283 of 431 passes, or 65.7 percent, for 3,433 yards and 35 touchdowns with only five interceptions. He had a quarter- back efficiency rating of 157.0. H

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