Author John Feinstein’s latest book, “Quarterback,” is an exploration of the pressure and privilege of the position, seen through the lens of a handful of quarterbacks: Doug Williams, Joe Flacco, Andrew Luck, Alex Smith and Ryan Fitzpatrick.
Amid all the records set and touchdowns scored in the Wolfpack 58-3 victory over ECU that wasn’t as close as the score would indicate, there were moments of pure joy sprinkled everywhere, like blueberries in a muffin.
Scottie Montgomery was set up to fail at ECU, caught in a perpetual power struggle that had nothing to do with him and tasked with cleaning up a mess others made for no apparent reason. His predecessor, Ruffin McNeill, never should have been fired.
Scott Darling, placed on waivers Thursday, arrived with the statistics and resume as a backup, and the hopes of an entire franchise on his elevated shoulders, but for whatever reason – a sense of entitlement, a fear of success or maybe just a lack of elite talent – his time with the Carolina Hurricanes has been an unmitigated disaster.
Everyone was watching Zion Williamson, even Indiana, and they were rewarded for their attention with a high-flying windmill dunk, the single most memorable moment of Duke’s 90-69 win over the Hoosiers, the largest margin of victory in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge so far.
Mack Brown’s unlikely return to coach the UNC Tar Heels could work. With potentially 19 starters coming back , North Carolina was already in a position to win eight football games next season with Fedora or Brown or Charlie Brown in charge.
There was actually a reasonable case to be made, strictly on the field, for bringing Larry Fedora back at North Carolina if he hadn’t spent the past few years digging his own professional grave. But the indiscretions piled up, one after another, until he hit rock bottom with the brawl at the end of Saturday’s overtime loss to N.C. State and his subsequent denial it ever happened.
One moment from N.C. State’s 34-28 overtime win over North Carolina on Saturday will go down in the lore of the rivalry, someday. At this point, there’s too many possibilities to figure out exactly what history will pick.
Curtins McElhinney’s third straight win was the best of the three, 4-1 over the Florida Panthers on Friday. In this streak, he’s stopped 97 of 101 shots but perhaps more notably the Carolina Hurricanes have looked more comfortable and more confident with McElhinney in net.
A North Carolina win Saturday would wipe out the potential for months of hand-wringing over coach Larry Fedora, who even with a loss to N.C. State will be a difficult coach for Bubba Cunningham to fire.
As the Carolina Hurricanes prepared to host the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday, all the attention was on two guys who weren’t even supposed to play. The immediate future of the Hurricanes’ goaltending situation crossed paths with their pursuit of unsigned Toronto restricted free agent William Nylander.
A lawsuit filed this week by former Louisville basketball recruit Brian Bowen against Adidas contains a new bribery allegation involving former N.C. State Wolfpack player Dennis Smith Jr., the latest indication that it could be a long few years for the university as it wrestles with the implications of the Federal investigation into basketball corruption.
A team that has been able to take pride in its effort, if not its goal-scoring or goaltending, couldn’t even claim that Saturday. After four days off, the Hurricanes took a fifth unscheduled, snoozing their way through a 4-1 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets in their worst performance of the year.
Without any disrespect toward St. Peter’s (Tuesday) or Mercer (next Saturday), it’s hard not to look ahead to Wisconsin and Vanderbilt as the first games that will give any indication of just how good this N.C. State team actually is after an 82-63 win over Maine to move to 4-0. So far, it’s hard to tell.