No Carolina St. vs

Kansas St.

at Orlando
Thu, Dec 28
2:45 PM Pacific
Rotation: 253
Odds: Kansas St. -2.5, Total: 47.5

Game Analysis

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Kansas State (-2.5)  26   NC State  23

With Will Howard in the transfer portal it will be Avery Johnson at quarterback for Kansas State. Johnson was given plenty of plying time over a 3 game stretch from week 7 through week 9, as the two quarterbacks shared time. Howard eventually reclaimed the full-time job but Johnson was just as effective throwing the ball, as he completed 66% of his 35 passes an average more yards per pass play than Howard did for the season. Johnson’s compensated yards per pass play was 0.2 yppp better than Howard against FBS competition. When Johnson was in the game the Wildcats ran the ball 67% of the time, although that percentage went down to 63% run plays against TCU and Houston after 31 of 40 plays he was in versus Texas Tech were runs. Running the ball more isn’t a bad strategy against a Wolfpack defense that’s much better defending the pass (0.7 yppp better than average) than they are defending the run (average). The Wildcats’ offensive pace was also significantly lower in those 3 games with Johnson getting multiple possessions and I suspect the pace will be slower than normal in this game with more running expected. I should mention that Kansas State’s to two receivers, WR Phillip Brooks and TE Ben Sinnott have both opted out to prepare for the NFL. Brook and Sinnott combined for 8.0 yards on 158 targets while the next 4 wide receivers and next 2 tight ends combined for 8.5 YPT on 140 targets. I don’t think either will be missed. NC State All-American LB Payton Wilson was practicing with the team but has decided to skip the bowl game to focus on getting ready for the NFL combine.  Wilson had 138 tackles (nearly twice as much as the next on the team), including 17.5 for loss (6 of those being sacks) and he had 9 passes defended (3 of them interceptions), which is really good for a linebacker. My algorithm suggests that Wilson is worth 2.2 points. I project 357 yards at 6.3 yppl for Kansas State.

Brennan Armstrong was back at quarterback down the stretch and played much better in the final 3 games than he did in the first 5 games of the season (MJ Morris played the 4 in between then was shut down to preserve his redshirt and has since entered the transfer portal). Armstrong ended up being a bit better than Morris in compensated yards per pass play and he also adds the rushing attack with 549 yards on 96 runs (95 yards on 22 runs for Morris). NC State’s offense was 0.3 yppl worse than average for the season and I rate them at -0.2 yppl with Armstrong at quarterback. That rating would have been better if not for NC State running the ball much more with Armstrong in the game. In fact, like Kansas State, I expect a slower pace of play than the season norm for the Wolfpack, as they averaged 1.74 plays per minute over the final 3 games, compared to 2.00 plays per minute for the season.

Kansas State will be without half of their starting secondary, as S Kobe Savage and CB Will Lee have transferred and are not on the depth chart, as is the case for DE Nate Matlack, who was second on the team in sacks (4) and 3rd in total tackles for loss (7.5) while not starting one game. Those 3 are worth 2.4 points according to my algorithm that is based on their stats. I rate the Kansas State defense at 0.3 yppl better than average with current personnel and project NC State to gain 333 yards at 5.4 yppl.

After all the adjustments the I come up with Kansas State by 4.7 points and 49.1 total points. Kansas State applies to a 23-63-2 ATS bowl situation so I’ll make it Wildcats by 3 points.

  • Team Stats
  • Game Log
  • No Carolina St.
  • Kansas St.


  • Run Plays 33.6 25.6
  • Run Yards 159.2 132.6
  • YPRP 4.7 5.2


  • Pass Comp 16.5 19.1
  • Pass Att 28.8 33.2
  • Comp % 57.1% 57.5%
  • Pass Yards 187.1 222.7
  • Sacks 2.1 2.6
  • Sack Yards 13.7 19.1
  • Sack % 6.8% 7.4%
  • Pass Plays 30.9 35.8
  • Net Pass Yards 173.4 203.6
  • YPPP 5.6 5.7


  • Total Plays 64.5 61.5
  • Total Yards 332.5 336.3
  • YPPL 5.2 5.5


  • Int 1.0 1.5
  • Int % 3.5% 4.4%
  • Fumbles 0.3 0.6
  • Turnovers 1.3 2.1
  • Points 26.8 20.2
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