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We’ve come a long way

University of Minnesota vs North Carolina State Micron bowl Thursday 12/28/00----- N.C State quaterback Philip Rivers 17 avoids the rush of Minnesota’s Karon Riley completing a pass to his teamate Koren Robinson during the 4th quarter at Pro Play

It’s funny; like it seems a little ridiculous that when I think back to when I was in college, and what was going on then sports-wise, and then attempt to go back and find video of said sports, the results all turn out to be some grainy 1986-looking-ass film.

See, I could swear I was not this old. Since when am I this old?

When Chuck Amato took over the NC State program from Mike O’Cain, he had a lot of problems to solve, though fortunately quarterback was not one of them. I love Amato’s first season because of just what an improbable triumph it was; that team not only found weird ways to win, it found Philip Rivers.

And so as we prepare for what is certain to be a big 2022, I find it instructive to remember where modern NC State football essentially started, and that was in those first couple of weeks in 2000, and more specifically, against Indiana.

Everything that began there has led to here. You can draw a straight line from then to now.

I miss that team in particular, for that particular reason; it was flawed, but also it had Philip Rivers, and that generally was enough.

But NC State now not only has a quarterback who is Rivers’ equal but a defense that is certain to create its own piece of history. There’s not even going to be any grainy television footage necessary. What a relief that is.