Van Eskridge runs for a 23-yard touchdown after an interception against North Carolina State during the first half. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)
Sept. 20, 2008
Raleigh, N.C. (AP) - Andre Brown's 10-yard touchdown run in overtime lifted North Carolina State to a 30-24 upset of No. 15 East Carolina on Saturday.
Russell Wilson threw three touchdown passes - including a game-tying 5-yarder to George Bryan with 1:12 left in regulation for the Wolfpack (2-2), seven-point underdogs who hung around all afternoon.
Patrick Pinkney was 19-of-32 passing for 210 yards and a touchdown for the Pirates (3-1). Pinkney's fumble on East Carolina's third play in overtime gave N.C. State a shot at the upset.
Brown hurdled defender J.J. Milbrook during a remarkable 16-yard run that set up the winning score, and finished with 73 yards and a 4-yard touchdown reception.
Wilson, a redshirt freshman making his first home start, went 21-for-31 for 210 yards and had a 20-yard TD throw to Williams. He energized a Wolfpack offense that entered with no touchdowns this season against teams from the bowl subdivision, and was one of just three in the FBS to rank 100th or worse in the four major stat categories - rushing, passing, scoring and total offense.
N.C. State finished with 384 total yards against an East Carolina defense that entered as one of the nation's best.
Pinkney had a 20-yard scoring pass to Devon Drew for the Pirates, who have lost 14 of the 21 meetings in Raleigh. They opened the season with upsets of then-ranked Virginia Tech and West Virginia, but needed a final-moments scoring drive to outlast Tulane last week.
Van Eskridge returned an interception 23 yards for a score and third-stringer Norman Whitley added 83 yards rushing and a 42-yard scoring run for the Pirates, who never trailed in regulation but couldn't generate any separation against the most despised rival on its schedule.
After Ben Hartman's 21-yard field goal with 4 1/2 minutes left put the Pirates up 24-17, N.C. State's offense went to work: T.J. Graham returned the kickoff to the Wolfpack 45, and Wilson needed only two plays to move them into the red zone, hitting Jarvis Williams for 26 yards and Andre Brown for 17.
Five plays later, Wilson found a sliding Bryan in the end zone. The officials initially ruled the pass incomplete, but reversed the call after a review of about 5 minutes.
East Carolina went three-and-out on its final possession of regulation.