Music City Bowl 2012: North Carolina State vs Vanderbilt TV Info & Predictions

T.J. McaloonContributorDecember 2, 2012

Music City Bowl 2012: North Carolina State vs Vanderbilt TV Info & Predictions

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    The 2012 Music City Bowl has a bit of history surrounding the game, as for the first time in school history Vanderbilt is playing in its second straight bowl game. On top of the Commodores date with program history, North Carolina State is playing its last game before Dave Doeren takes over when the 2013 season starts. 

    Aside from those two stories leading into this bowl game, it features a very good passing attack from North Carolina State going up against a stout Vanderbilt defense. 

    The Wolfpack's passing game is led by Mike Glennon, who was the best in the ACC this year with 3,648 yards with an average of 304 yards per game. Glennon finished only behind Clemson's Tajh Boyd for the lead in the ACC for touchdown passes: as Boyd finished with 34 to Glennon's 30. 

    Vanderbilt, on the other hand, brings to this game the best passing defense in the SEC. 

    The Commodores gave up, on average, 175.8 yards per game to opposing quarterbacks while surrendering only six touchdown passes.

    Which will prevail in the Music City Bowl: Vanderbilt's pass defense, or Glennon's ability to air the ball out to his receivers?  

Game-Day Info

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    Where: LP Field, Nashville, Tennessee 

    When: December, 31, 2012 12:00 p.m. ET

    TV: ESPN

    Radio: Vanderbilt- WLAC-AM-1510   North Carolina State-WKNC-FM-88.1

    Live Streaming: ESPN3.com

    Betting Line: According to pregame.com, Vanderbilt -7.

Key Storylines

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    There are several sub-plots to this bowl game; so let's take a dive into what you can be looking for on New Year's Eve. 

    How does North Carolina State play in its final game before Dave Doeren takes over? The Wolfpack could be motivated to give the coaching staff one last victory before their new boss takes over next year. 

    Does Vanderbilt win its first bowl game since 2008? Yes, they're playing in a consecutive bowl game for the first time in school history, but winning would be a lot better than just showing up and playing. 

    Will playing in front of a home crowd for Vanderbilt give them an advantage? The game is in Memphis, while the school is based out of Nashville, but it's still an in-state game for students and fans to get to. 

    Which will prevail: Vanderbilt's defense or NC-State's passing attack? As I alluded to earlier this will see the top yards per game quarterback in the ACC going up against the top passing defense in the SEC. 

Vanderbilt Depth Chart and Injury Report

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    Depth Chart according to VandySports.com

    Offense: 

    QB:  11- Jordan Rodgers, 6-1, 212, SR

     6- Auystin Carta-Samuels, 6-1, 224, JR

     4- Patton Robinette, 6-4, 205, FR

    RB:   2- Zac Stacy, 5-9, 210, SR

    21- Wesley Tate, 6-1, 220, JR

    25- Brian Kimbrow, 5-8, 180, FR

    5- Warren Norman, 5-10, 205, JR

    FB:  38- Fitz Lassing, 6-3, 240, JR

    45- Marc Panu, 6-1, 240, JR

    WR:  80- Chris Boyd, 6-4, 208, SO

    83- John Cole, 5-10, 180, SR

    19- Jacquese Kirk, 6-0, 175, FR

    WR:  87- Jordan Matthews, 6-3, 205, JR

    17- Jonathan Krause, 5-11, 184, JR

     7- Josh Grady, 6-0, 190, FR

    TE:  81- Steven Scheu, 6-5, 255, FR

    82- Kris Kentera, 6-3, 230, FR

    89- Dillion Van der Wal, 6-7, 255, SO

    86- Austin Monahan, 6-6, 252, SR

    C:    77- Spencer Pulley, 6-4, 290, SO

    57- Joe Townsend, 6-4, 295, SO

    OG: 69- Josh Jelesky, 6-5, 295, SR

    53- Jake Bernstein, 6-4, 295, FR

    OG:  62- Ryan Seymour, 6-5, 275, SO

    71- Adam Butler, 6-4, 285, FR

    OT:  52- Andrew Bridges, 6-6, 275, SO

    73- Chase White, 6-5, 290, SO

    OT:  67- Wesley Johnson, 6-5, 290, JR

    50- Andrew Jelks, 6-6, 275, FR

    Defense: 

    DE:  98- Johnell Thomas, 6-0, 250, SR

    55- Caleb Azubike, 6-4, 250, FR

    54- Jimmy Stewart, 6-4, 240, FR

    DE:  90- Walker May, 6-5, 250, JR

    92- Kyle Woestmann, 6-3, 255, SO

    56- Darien Bryant, 6-4, 230, FR

    DT:   58- Colt Nichter, 6-1, 290, SR

    44- Barron Dixon, 6-4, 302, SO

    DT:   84- Rob Lohr, 6-4, 294, SR

    97- Jared Morse, 6-2, 304, JR

    53- Vince Taylor, 6-1, 312, SO

    LB:  28- Karl Butler, 6-0, 217, JR

    30- Larry Franklin, 6-1, 210, FR

    LB: 15- Archibald Barnes, 6-4, 235, SR

    35- Darreon Herring, 6-2, 231, FR

    LB:  36- Chase Garnham, 6-3, 237, JR

    13- Jake Sealand, 6-2, 220, FR

    CB:  23- Andre Hal, 6-0, 184, JR

    33- Derek King, 5-11, 196, FR

    CB:  8- Trey Wilson, 5-11, 195, SR

    16- Eddie Foster, 5-10, 174, SR

    S:    1- Kenny Ladler, 6-1, 200, JR

    32- Andrew Williamson, 6-1, 206, FR

    S:   31- Jayon Marshall, 5-10, 205, JR

    22- Eric Samuels, 6-10, 200, SR

    27- Jahmel McIntosh, 6-1, 200, FR

    Special Teams

    Punter: 94- Richard Kent, 6-2, 205, SR

         48- Ryan Fowler, 5-10, 172, SR

    Kicker: 39- Carey Spear, 5-10, 195, JR

        48- Ryan Fowler, 5-10, 172, SR

    Holder: 94- Richard Kent, 6-2, 205, SR

        11- Jordan Rodgers, 6-1, 212, SR

    Kick Return: 23- Andre Hal, 6-0, 184, JR

        25- Brian Kimbrow, 5-8, 180, FR

          12- Steven Clarke, 5-10, 195, JR

    Punt Return: 2- Zac Stacy, 5-9, 210, SR

        17- Jonathan Krause, 5-11, 184, JR

    Long Snapper: 34- Andrew East, 6-2, 225, SO

            84- Rob Lohr, 6-4, 294, SR

    Injuries according to USA Today:

    Center, Spencer Pulley, undisclosed reasons is out indefinitely. 

    Offensive lineman, Kevin McCoy, is out for the season with a back injury. 


North Carolina State Depth Chart and Injury Report

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    Depth chart according to NCState.rivals.com.

    Offense: 

    QB:   8- Mike Glennon, 6-6, 232, RS SR

    15- Manny Stocker, 6-3, 200, FR

    HB:  10- Shadrach Thornton, 6-1, 200, FR

    26- Tony Creecy, 6-0, 210, RS SO

    FB:  44- Logan Winkles, 6-1, 252, RS SO

    47- Tyler Purvis, 6-3, 230, JR

    WR: 88- Quintin Payton, 6-4, 210, RS JR

    84- Charlie Hegedus, 6-2, 195, FR

    WR:  4- Tobais Palmer, 5-11, 175, RS SR

    80- Bryan Underwood, 5-11, 174, RS SO

    2- Rashard Smith, 5-11, 176, RS JR

    TE: 87- Mario Carter, 6-4, 262, RS SR

    82- Asa Watson, 6-4, 235, RS JR

    OT: 78- Rob Crisp, 6-7, 312, JR

    67- Quincy McKinney, 6-4, 304, FR

    OT: 74- Tyson Chandler, 6-6, 340, RS SO

    71- Alex Barr, 6-7, 332, RS FR

    OG: 79- R.J. Mattes, 6-6, 313, RS SR

    73- Andy Jomantas, 6-7, 289, RS SO

    OG: 64- Andrew Wallac, 6-5, 293, RS SR

    50- Cameron Fordham, 6-3, 286, RS SO

    C: 53- Camden Wentz, 6-3, 301, SR

    54- Joe Thuney, 6-5, 265, RS FR

    Defense: 

    DE: 92- Darryl Cato-Bishop, 6-4, 278, RS JR

    98- McKay Frandsen, 6-3, 255, SR

    DE: 55- Brian Slay, 6-3, 274, SR

    95- Art Norman, 6-1, 242, RS SO

    90- Mike Rose, 6-4, 232, RS FR

    DT: 69- Thomas Teal, 6-2, 315, RS SO

    70- Carlos Gray, 6-4, 321, RS FR

    DT: 75- T.Y. McGill, 6-1, 298, SO

    65- A.J. Ferguson, 6-3, 281, JR

    LB: 5- Rodman Noel, 6-3, 210, SO

    42- M.J. Salahuddin, 6-2, 192, FR

    LB: 34- Rickey Dowdy, 6-2, 240, RS JR

    39- Brandon Pittman, 6-3, 216, SO

    LB: 7-Sterling Lucas, 6-2, 231, RS SR

    43- Ryan Cheek, 6-1, 231, RS JR

    CB: 25- Dontae Johnson, 6-4, 196, JR

    20- C.J. Wilson, 5-11, 187, RS SR

    S: 30- Brandan Bishop, 6-2, 205, SR

    6- Tim Buckley, 6-0, 202, RS FR

    S: 27- Earl Wolff, 6-0, 207, RS SR

    38- Hakim Jones, 6-2, 190, RS FR

    Special Teams: 

    Kicker: 32- Niklas Sade, 6-3, 200, SO

    31- Matthew Shaefer, 6-0, 187, RS SR

    Punter: 36- Wil Baumann, 6-4, 185, SO

    47- Will Stephenson, 6-3, 170, FR

    Long Snapper: 57- Scott Thompson, 6-0, 220, SO

    Holder: 36- Wil Baumann, 6-4, 185, SO

    Kick Return: 4- Tobais Palmer, 5-11, 175, RS SR

    20- C.J. Wilson, 5-11, 187, RS SR

    Punt Returner: 2- Rashard Smith, 5-11, 176, RS JR

    1- David Amerson, 6-3, 194, JR

    North Carolina State injuries from USA Today:

    Defensive Tackle, Brian Slay, is day-to-day with an upper body injury, he is questionable for the bowl game.

    Guard, Duran Christopher, is day-to-day with a concussion, he is questionable for the bowl game.

    Corner Back, Jarvis Byrd, is day-to-day with a thigh injury, he is questionable for the bowl game. 

    Half Back, James Washington, is out for the season with a knee injury.

    Defensive End, Forrest West, is out for the season with an ankle injury. 

    Guard, Zach Allen, is out for the season with a leg injury.

    Defensive Tackle, Jacob Kahut, is out for the season with a knee injury.

    Line Backer, Michael Peek, is out for the season with a knee injury. 

Vanderbilt Player to Watch

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    Vanderbilt as a team may be known for its defense. However, a big part as to why it finished with eight wins this year was because of the production from running back Zac Stacy. 

    Stacy finished his senior year as one of the best running backs in the SEC. 

    He ended up in the top-five of the conference with 1,034 yards, averaged 86.2 yards per game with 5.7 yards per carry and nine touchdowns. 

    He may have only had three 100-yard rushing games in 2012; however, in those three games Stacy eclipsed the 100-yard mark by rushing for 174, 169 and 180 yards, respectively. In fact, in his final game of the regular season, Stacy had some of his best stats of the year rushing for 180 yards, scoring twice and ripping off a 90-yard touchdown run; his longest run of the season. 

North Carolina State Player to Watch

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    There has been a lot already said in this game preview about what Glennon has done for North Carolina State in 2012. 

    He's had three games of 400-plus passing yards, with Glennon throwing for 493 yards and five touchdowns in a 62-48 loss to Clemson back on November 17th. 

    If North Carolina State is going to come away with a bowl victory, over Vanderbilt, it will be because of the success of the passing game led by Glennon. When he was able to have a completion percentage of 60 percent or higher, NC-State were victorious. 

    However, if that percentage dipped below 60 percent, the Wolfpack struggled to keep their defense off of the field which resulted in North Carolina State giving up a ton of points. 

Key Matchups

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    When Glennon was able to complete 60 percent or more of his passes the Wolfpack were a perfect 7-0 in 2012. 

    However, Vanderblit was second in the SEC in completion percentage allowed to opposing quarterbacks, allowing only a 52 completion percentage. Vanderbilt held teams to only 92 first downs in 2012, only six touchdowns and only 16 completions per game. 

    Another matchup will be how North Carolina State's receivers will be able to get open against a suffocating Vanderbilt secondary. 

    North Carolina State receivers were second in the ACC in receiving yards with 3,659 on the season, yards per game with 304.9 and touchdowns with 30. 

    However, on the other side of the ball, Vanderbilt led the SEC in total receiving yards allowing 2,133 yards to receivers, fourth in the conference with 16.4 average receptions per game and second in the SEC with six touchdowns. 

Vanderbilt Will Win If...

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    Vanderbilt will win if it can get its offense going early in the game. If it can get an early double-digit lead in the first quarter, by scoring on its opening drives, then it will force North Carolina State to pass on almost every down to catch up.

    If that happens, then it plays right into the Commodores strength, their passing defense. 

    But if Vanderbilt's offense is going to be successful early then it will be because wide receiver Jordan Matthews has found space in the Wolfpack secondary.

    Matthews had a career year in 2012 posting highs in receptions with 87, yards with 1,262 and touchdowns with seven. 

    Those numbers propelled Matthews to the top of the SEC as he finished second in receptions and yards, and eighth in touchdowns. 

North Carolina State Will Win If...

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    North Carolina State will win if it can get the passing game going. 

    It needs to get Glennon into a rhythm from the opening drive by finding holes in the Vanderbilt secondary. The Wolfpack can do this by drawing up plays for receiver Bryan Underwood to get open and command the football.

    Underwood was one of Glennon's favorite receiver in 2012 catching 43 passes for 615 yards and leading the team with 10 touchdowns. 

    But if Underwood cannot find space, then it will be up to Glennon's other weapon, Tobias Palmer. 

    Palmer finished behind Underwood on the team in scoring, hauling in only six scores, but he did lead the Wolfpack with 46 catches and 670 yards. 

    These players success will determine how Glennon performs in the Music City Bowl. 

Prediction

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    This will be a highly competitive game as both of these teams finished with similar records: Vanderbilt 8-4, North Carolina State 7-5. 

    The offensive edge goes to North Carolina State because of the passing game that we've explored during this slide show. However, Vanderbilt has the better defense between these two squads as they were tops in a tough conference, the SEC. 

    As for how this game will play out, I see the Commodores coming away with the victory. 

    The passing defense is just too good and should be a problem for North Carolina State from start-to-finish. 

    Final Score: Vanderbilt 27 - North Carolina State 13