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Pack in the Pros: Super Bowl Edition

Ring-a-ling-ding, Russell gets a ring!

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Hello, World. Meet Russell Wilson. He's kind of the best. Folks around here have known that for a while, and despite the sad truth that we haven't had nearly enough to be proud of lately, we're willing to share. Just don't forget that N.C. State was the place that gave Wilson an opportunity to prove himself at quarterback. On Super Bowl Sunday, he proved himself yet again on the biggest of big stages, joining forces with the NFL's best defense to smother the Broncos.

Wilson, who joined names like Aikman, Brees, Montana, and Simms by becoming the fifth Super Bowl QB to complete 70+% of his passes and throw for over 200 yards with at least two scores in The Big Game, is one of three former N.C. State stars that will get some sweet ring bling thanks to Seattle's commanding 43-8 win over Denver. Guard J.R. Sweezy, who helped pave the way for the Seahawks'135-27 advantage in rushing yards, and Steven Hauschka, who kicked in 11 points, complete the triumvirate of Pack players that triumphed over the favored Broncos. Don't worry, Vegas, we all have an off night.

Wilson, who posted a 123.1 quarterback rating, became the fourth second-year QB to win a Super Bowl. Like the list above, it's pretty elite company: Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger, and Kurt Warner (not to be confused with Wyoming, West Virgina's Curt Warner, whose #28 I wore to school with pride back in the 80s). Wilson's QBR was the eighth best in the 48th holding of the Super Bowl.

No matter what happened Sunday, a former Wolfpack standout would win the big one, as Nate Irving lined up for the Broncos at linebacker. Irving had a stellar game, stuffing Marshawn Lynch for no gain for one of his four tackles and breaking up a would-be TD pass to Jermaine Kearse to hold the Hawks to a field goal in the early going. But Irving could only forestall turnover-prone Denver's demise for so long, as Seattle converted four Denver turnovers into 21 points.

Though he has no Wolfpack ties, we'd be remiss not to mention the contributions of Percy Harvin, the injury-plagued Hawk who entered the game with 75 all-purpose yards all season. Harvin flirted with MVP honors with 137 all-purpose yards, including an 87-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to start the second half and the game's longest rush of 30 yards on an end around. Malcolm Smith, who had a 69-yard pick six, ended up taking home MVP honors and was the first defender so honored in 11 years.

But, for WPN, this game was not about that stingy Seattle D, it was about seeing Russell Wilson get what no person on this planet deserves more than he does. Character does count, and one of the truly good guys received the ultimate blessing in sports on Super Bowl Sunday. I can't wait to vote for him for president in 2028 and smile knowingly as he ushers in world peace.


In totally unrelated but exciting news, #Pack15 picked up its first commitment this weekend, as Malik Douglas, a rangy defensive end prospect with 4.6 speed, pledged following Junior Day. Hopefully the three-star commit helps carry over the momentum from the stellar 2014 class. Run with the Pack, boys; clearly it's the first step towards Super Bowl glory.