The Wolfpacker

January 2013

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 69 of 79

■ pack past Lou Holtz Led NC State To Unmatched Success In Football By Tim Peeler ou Holtz was too small to play college football, but he did it any way. When he first became a coach, he was at a school that was too small to garner much success or attention, but he did it any way, taking William & Mary to the Tangerine Bowl. And when he came to NC State, a program that needed a shot in the arm after 17 years under the same system, people weren't sure if his triple-option veer offense would work in the ACC, but he used it any way. Though his tenure at NC State was as short as his stature, Holtz electrified the Wolfpack program at a time when football competed for attention on campus with an ACC and NCAA championship basketball team and a three-time ACC champion baseball team. L "If Earle Edwards brought respectability and respect to State football, Lou Holtz took the sport a step further." ■ News & Observer columnist Joe Tiede, 1976 During his four seasons in Raleigh (1972-75), Holtz directed the Wolfpack to a 33-12-3 record, an ACC title, four bowl games and the highest final ranking (No. 11) in school history. photo courtesy nc state media relations The football program held its own, with Holtz taking the Wolfpack to four consecutive bowl games for the first time, winning the 1973 ACC championship and posting the highest final ranking (11th) in school history. During his time on the sidelines at Carter Stadium, Holtz lost only one home game, a 30-22 setback in 1975 to Wake Forest, of all teams. He beat Syracuse, Penn State, Florida, South Carolina, Indiana, East Carolina and every one of the Wolfpack's six ACC rivals on his home turf, going 9-1-1 in home league games from 1972-75. Holtz was amazing. Has any Wolfpack coach in history ever gotten a standing ovation for losing to North Carolina? Holtz did, the first time he played the Tar Heels. The game was in Chapel Hill and the Wolfpack nearly pulled off an upset when Holtz made the gutsy call to go for a two-point conversion in the final 10 seconds. The risky play failed, but Wolfpack fans at the game appreciated Holtz's sense of derringdo and stood up cheering as the team left the field at Kenan Stadium. It's little wonder that Wolfpack fans, some 40 years after Holtz first arrived on campus, still fondly remember football's 70  ■  the wolfpacker 70,72-73.Pack Past.indd 70 12/11/12 2:30 PM

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Wolfpacker - January 2013