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NC State releases its 2021 football schedule

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COLLEGE FOOTBALL: JAN 02 TaxSlayer Gator Bowl - NC State v Kentucky Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The 2021 NC State football schedule is here, and much earlier than normal, too! Unfortunately, the return of the two-division format is also here, and we have that to, um, look forward to.

The ACC (along with the rest of college football) is at this point planning on a standard season schedule with eight league games and four non-conference games per team. This is what that looks like for State:

Sept. 2 (Thursday) — vs. USF
Sept. 11 — at Mississippi State
Sept. 18 — vs. Furman
Sept. 25 — vs. Clemson
Oct. 2 — vs. Louisiana Tech
Oct. 16 — at Boston College
Oct. 23 — at Miami
Oct. 30 — vs. Louisville
Nov. 6 — at Florida State
Nov. 13 — at Wake Forest
Nov. 20 — vs. Syracuse
Nov. 26 (Friday) — vs. UNC

The Wolfpack will get a little extra time to prep for Mississippi State, and it has an FCS opponent the week prior to playing Clemson, which is all you can ask for short of a bye week. No doubt that middle portion where NC State plays four out of five on the road will be pivotal—the Wolfpack could easily be 4-1 heading into that part of the schedule, and it’s where the team can prove that the gains it appeared to make in 2020 were real.