No. 24 NC State, hosts Louisville, are both looking to finish strong

Field level media

Louisville rallied for a time after major disappointments earlier in the year wiped out many of his aspirations. 24th-state North Carolina appears to be showing similar resilience when the Atlantic Coast Conference teams meet in Louisville, Kentucky on Saturday.

The home Cardinals (6-4, 3-4 ACC) won four straight games before last week’s loss to Clemson, but there’s still time for special moments.

“I want them to have great memories when they leave Louisville, and part of that is going there and winning those games,” Cardinals coach Scott Satterfield said.

NC State (7-3, 3-3), ranked all season, lost its home final to struggling Boston College last week. Even without a berth in the ACC Championship game, it was yet another dip in what was once a promising season.

“We still have opportunities ahead of us that will allow us to still have a great season here, albeit not the season that we thought when we started with what we set out to do,” said Wolfpack coach Dave Doeren . “The guys all understand that. It’s just about being honest with them, not sugarcoating anything, letting them talk and saying how they feel.”

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Louisville quarterback Malik Cunningham has a sore right shoulder from an injury he sustained against Clemson. It sounds like the Cardinals will be wary of his lead to this game.

“As the week progresses we’ll have a better idea of ​​where he is,” Satterfield said. “Let’s see how fast that can heal.”

Satterfield said Cunningham was wiser when directing football to try to avoid hits when he can. NC State has already seen the ins and outs of bringing in a new quarterback midseason.

MJ Morris helped earn a win against Virginia Tech, then made his first career start in the loss to Boston College. Morris was hit by turnovers in the second half.

“We don’t expect him to be perfect,” said Doeren. “Any time a player, from freshman to senior, makes a mistake, you will evaluate them and try to help them. All you’re asking is that he learn from it.” The Wolfpack failed to score a touchdown after the first quarter of the Boston College game. So there’s an unease going against a Louisville defense that has recently shown a knack for forcing turnovers.

“They bring a lot of pressure,” Doeren said of the Cardinals. “They are aggressive and have good players.”

NC State will play two games in less than a week with a Black Friday matchup at rival North Carolina. The focus on making things right begins in Louisville.

“We’re looking forward to another talented team and the opportunity to compete and play away at that,” said Doeren. “I’m looking forward to this opportunity with our players in these two games. We have big plans.”

Louisville leads the all-time streak 6-4, but NC State has won three of its last four meetings, including 28-13 last season in Raleigh, NC — Field Level Media