The NC State Wolfpack baseball team found out their season was over this weekend after being forced out of the College World Series. Early Saturday morning, the NCAA Division I baseball committee declared Saturday's winner-take-all bracket final between NC State and Vanderbilt a no contest due to COVID-19 protocols. As a result, Vanderbilt advances to the championship round and will play Mississippi State on Monday.
"The NCAA and the committee regret that NC State's student-athletes and coaching staff will not be able to continue in the championship in which they earned the right to participate," the statement read, per ESPN. "Because of privacy issues, we cannot provide further details."
On Friday' Ryan McGee of ESPN reported that NC State second baseman JT Jarrett and relief pitcher Evan Justice were out due to COVID-19 issues. NC State used only 12 players on Friday and lost to Vanderbilt 3-1. Only 13 players were available.
"The last 24 hours have been extremely difficult for everyone involved and my heart goes out to the student-athletes, coaches and staff of our baseball program," NC State athletic director Boo Corrigan said in a statement Saturday morning. "The health and safety of our student-athletes and staff will always be our unwavering priority. The timing of this is simply devastating for everyone involved, but it doesn't diminish their incredible accomplishments this season." Here's a look at fans sounding off on NC State missing out on a chance to win a championship.
So the NCAA:
Sent shorthanded NC State team on the field Friday
In a jammed stadium with 20,000 people
Cancelled the season at 2am
Sent Survive/Advance tweet
Isn’t testing/quarantining Vandy players/coaches who were around NCSU
Providing zero public info
Sounds about right— Will Brinson (@WillBrinson) June 26, 2021
One fan wrote: "With the way it went down, Vandy and the others should refuse to play until State can too. However, apparently Vandy coach pushed for the testing before yesterday's game, so we know they have no honor. Sad thing is they unvaxxed were neg yesterday and still not allowed to play."prevnext
The NCAA ended NC State's chance at a National Championship because 6 players tested positive for COVID-19 — 4 were vaccinated.
Yet they'll continue to allow 25,000+ fans (100% capacity) to attend the finals without being masked, tested, or vaccinated.
Please stop the madness.— Joe Pompliano (@JoePompliano) June 26, 2021
Another fan wrote: "I'm a healthcare worker, vaccinated, completely for being safe... But this is insane. If you are letting stadiums be full and not test, stop testing players. Imo.prevnext
"No Vandy players have been tested," the fan wrote. "4 of the 6 positive tests came from guys who ARE vaccinated. This message came directly from a player. This was a ruthless and despicable act from the NCAA."prevnext
Yet it wasn’t safe for NC State to play. https://t.co/EQvaCcb1lO— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) June 27, 2021
One social media user added: "They knew the rules. I don't understand why they chances it. I agree & feel horrible for them but pretty stupid to have not gotten vaccinated. They took a chance & it cost them."prevnext
I am very proud to be a NC State Alum. Thank you @NCStateBaseball for taking us on the ride. Anything I say within this tweet will not do justice to these kids that worked their tails off to get where they’re at. I’m sorry it ended this way.— Carlos Rodón (@Carlos_Rodon55) June 26, 2021
"All of WPN needs to wrap their arms around [NC State baseball] right now and love them with all the gratitude in the world for what they gave us," another fan stated. "They gave us more than any hardware can equal. Bigger things than trophies to be gained in life and they did just that."prevnext
FOR NC STATE. FOR AMERICA. pic.twitter.com/CG6zBAcuZm— Hail State Stool (NC State West) (@HailStateStool) June 27, 2021
Is Mississippi State now America's team? "We all go to State! Win it all," one fan wrote. "We will celebrate it with you when visit Starkville in September.prevnext
This team will never be forgotten. Can’t thank the older guys enough for everything they have taught me this year. True leaders on and off the field. Truly heartbroken for us and every NC State supporter. pic.twitter.com/AlweUpPjsN— Coby Ingle (@thecobyingle) June 26, 2021
And this fan added: "Have not followed your program, but was blown away by your coaches commitment to his players and their tenacity in the face of adversity yesterday. So sorry this happened to y'all."prev