Saturday, January 31, 2009


It's that day again Wolfpack fans. The day you mark on your calendar the moment the schedule drops. The day you tell your wife that all plans are to be put on hold. The day that bleeds anticipation, and stinks with a sense of nervousness. For many of you it's a day you secretly dread, your pessimistic bones rattle at the thought of facing such a powerhouse as Carolina. You fear your boys at work will chop you up and spit you out for actually believing State has a shot to take this one. But for this one day, put your fears aside, allow your inner Pack fan to show through the years of abuse and turmoil you've received. Bring back the old you...the one that used to brag about State, the one that used to predict victories and upsets, the one that wasn't embarrassed to wear your Wolfpack shirt and tie to work.

Now there are some fans out there that I run into that never waiver. They will go to their grave believing the Pack will win every game...yes, their head is riddled with grays and they're on heart medication but their pride is obvious. The sad fact is there are other State fans. The ones that don't like to wear their State tie to the office anymore, the ones that feel it's easier to turn against and bash our team, than to believe and support them. Whoever you are, if you have a ticket tonight we ask you one favor. For just this day...believe. Let go of all your spite and bad memories, the pessimism and the doubt. It's time to give this team a fanbase they can be proud to play for, one they never want to let down or give up on.

I know you feel it, because I often do. When you're in the arena and the Pack grabs a lead, it only takes two or three possessions of not scoring before the place falls deaf with an eerie silence that so loudly says "Oh no, we're going to lose the lead and lose this game." You can feel it, you can feel the doubt and the sense of hesitation to be excited, it fills the arena like a thick smoke, and chokes the life out everyone in the building, players included. Which is why we urge you all to start truly believing.

Remember when Sidney walked out of the tunnel with the red jacket for the first time? It was 2 years ago against the heels, and the RBC was buzzing. The ghost of Jimmy V was least that's what people believed. It was State basketball coming full circle, it was a game of destiny that fate wanted us to win. Remember? And we cheered as such. No "Boos" on turnovers or gasps at Carolina surging back. There was no doubt in us that day and the players could hear it on every possession, they felt it and so did we...we were the most confident team that day, our fans were sure for once that this was our game to win. And win we did.

After that day it was a few road game losses that brought the fanbase back to grumbling and doubting, firing up the message boards with hate and anger. And we know, believe me we know, that it can be frustrating to put your heart and soul into something and not be gratified at every turn. But are we holding up the part of our bargain? Do we walk into that arena for every home game and give 100%? We expect the players to come out and believe in themselves, to want to win and to never back down no matter what. We'll disgrace a kid on the message board for taking a few plays off or being scared on the court, but we need to take a look in the mirror. We too are guilty of taking a few plays off from screaming. We're guilty of being hesitant and nervous when we grab a lead, as if we're scared to win. I've played a lot of competitive basketball in my day and I know for a fact that the atmosphere and the attitude of the fans have an effect on the play of a team, as much as you don't like to believe it, it is there.

So today at 3:30 show up in your finest red outfit, exuding an unwavering confidence and support for this team. And while I'm not going to predict a victory, nor will I dispute that Carolina is favored to win this game. I will say this, if we the fans show up and give 100% to this team, push them and encourage them, never give up on them and truly believe in them...then there's no telling what could happen. We want the attitude of the program changed, we want a culture of belief and excitement back in Raleigh...then why don't we, the fans, usher in that change tonight.


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