Despite the heartbreaking buttfest that was Friday night’s fourth quarter, the season continues, and NC State needs to get off the mat, because there is still a lot to play for. It’s Florida State week, and that holds a special place in the heart for many Wolfpack fans, as a strikingly large number of NC State’s most memorable wins have come against the Noles.
2012 - NC State 17 Florida State 16
This was the greatest football game I have ever seen in person and it isn’t even close. The sheer improbability of the sequence of events that led to this victory stuns me every time I think about the fact that it actually happened. State came back from 16 down against the #3 team in the country and orchestrated a game winning sequence that featured a 3-and-out for the defense, without which the game would have been over, a blocked punt, and three fourth-down conversions on the final drive, the last of which was a game-winning touchdown
2010 - NC State 28 Florida State 24
Down 24-21 late in the fourth quarter and facing a fourth-and-goal at the one, Tom O’Brien bet on Russell Wilson, which is usually a good move. He threw a touchdown pass. The Noles made quick work of State’s defense on the ensuing drive, right up until quarterback Christian Ponder fumbled the ball off his own running back. Nate Irving, who had been previously sidelined that night with a thumb injury before deciding to just play anyway, recovered it for the win. What a night.
2002 - NC State 17 Florida State 7
In a game that contained the most roundabout path to 17 points in football history, NC State knocked off ACC champion Florida State in a season finale that elevated the Wolfpack to 10 wins for the first time ever. Florida State’s offense amassed zero points over 60 minutes of college football, its only touchdown a fumble return off a fake field goal. It’s hard to understate just how weird the scoring was in this game. A holding penalty in the endzone and a blocked punt gave State two safeties, the latter of which put it up 17-7 and placed the game neatly out of reach.
1998 - NC State 24 Florida State 7
Florida State had played 48 ACC games between joining the league in 1992 and September 12, 1998. The Noles had won 47 of them. FSU was #2 in the country and State was a 25-point underdog at home. The Pack beat the crap out of them. Chris Weinke started Florida State off with a 74-yard touchdown pass on Florida State’s first play. He then threw six interceptions. Torry Holt went off with a 63-yard touchdown reception and a 68-yard punt return touchdown, and State scored every point the rest of the way to win 24-7.