1. O'Brien's new approach.
With speedy Russell Wilson at quarterback, N.C. State coach Tom O'Brien's offense might differ significantly from the pro-style system he has used in the past. The element of surprise on offense is one of the few advantages the Wolfpack carries into this game.
2. Gamecocks in a rush.
Coach Steve Spurrier is known as a wizard in the passing game but would be wise to probe N.C. State's suspect rushing defense. With a veteran offensive line and a back with 1,658 career rushing yards, South Carolina has the talent to establish the run.
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3. Shaky specialists.
N.C. State has first-year starter Josh Czajkowski at kicker and might have freshman T.J. Graham returning punts. South Carolina's Ryan Succop is one of the nation's top returning kickers.