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NC State is headed to the Independence Bowl, will play Vanderbilt

More football is good, even if it isn’t exactly where we wanted the football to happen.

North Carolina State v North Carolina Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

Going in to Sunday, there was still some uncertainty about NC State’s bowl destination. While indications earlier in the week pointed to a landing spot in the Military Bowl, alas, things did not work out that way for the Wolfpack. Wake Forest is in the Military Bowl. NC State will play Vanderbilt in the Independence Bowl on Dec. 26. Shreveport it is!

The Military Bowl in Annapolis would have been a lot easier on the fan base, but I’m not going to pretend I’m upset about this turn of events. Shoot, give Wake Forest a break, they have been through several years of unbearably bad football. State could have earned better positioning by, y’know, winning more football games. Oh well.

Vanderbilt closed out its regular season with wins over Mississippi and Tennessee—wins it had to have in order to become bowl eligible. Five of the Commodores’ six losses were by seven points or fewer, and they have a road win at Georgia to their credit. Pretty solid team, probably better than their record implies.

Still, no doubt this is a winnable game for the Wolfpack, which also closed out the regular season on a strong note. Dave Doeren’s crew could use another bowl game victory to push the positive sentiments into the spring, especially after last year’s disappointment in the Belk Bowl.