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NC State Football

Boo Coorigan: "It's Shocking"

December 28, 2021

NC State AD Boo Coorigan met with the media to discuss the cancellation of the Holiday Bowl.

Boo Coorigan Interview (WRAL)

Opening Statement...
I mean, it's shocking, right? We're less than three hours away from getting ready to get on the bus to go over and play a game. It's not 24 hours, 48 hours or any of those things.

I've been looking at my watch all week and trying to figure out, "What time is it? How close are we?" Then you get that phone call, and it's hard not to be angry. You know?

It's not angry at anyone in particular, but you're angry about the situation. You know how hard the men in our program have fought to get to this point, and what they've given up during the process to get here.

It's an emotional time. You try to make sure you’re handling it the right way and moving forward with everything.

My message to them was, “None of this takes away from the year we had. None of this has any affect on the bond that were created, the appreciation for each other, for our fans and everyone involved. It's just a really, really unfortunate situation.”

What are your options now for your team?
That's the hard part, right? It's trying to figure out who's available, who's still around? People have been canceled out of games and then they let [players and coaches] go. Then they are home they're trying to reconvene.

We started that conversation immediately. Once you get over the shock of what just happened, then you talk to Coach Doeren, talk to the team.

I heard Drake [Thomas] reference finding out on Twitter. That's miserable. That's an abject failure that they've got to find out on Twitter instead of us being able to tell them that.

That's part of the whole process of being angry about how everything went down. That being said, the bowl itself and how they've handled everything, has been tremendous It's been a great experience for our young people to be here. The people here, the parade this morning, you saw all the NC State fans out at the parade. There were a whole lot more than I thought that made the trip out.

We're going to do everything we can to see if we can find a game.

Do you have a list of teams available to see who you can play?
You're looking at who's canceled already? Kind of the logical teams, things like that. Where does the Holiday Bowl fit in, kind of playing the game out here. How soon could they get here? All the hotels, everything that goes into it.

What's the right amount of time to keep our young people here to be able to do that? So we're trying to figure out anything that we can right now.

Have you talked to John Gilbert, ECU’s AD?

Have you talked to Martin Jarmond, UCLA’s AD?

What was that conversation like?
Frustrating. Frustrating is what it was.

The timing of everything has a lot to do with the frustration from my standpoint. Like I alluded to, we're three hours away from getting on the bus to go over there. I'm sure the locker rooms are already setup, everything's already setup, the Powerade is made, everyone is ready to go, then all of the sudden, "What do you mean we're not playing?"

But again, it's a unique time period. Right? I’ve been here, about two years of my time here have been under COVID. It just kind of keeps coming up. But you know what, we're going to keep fighting through it.

Chip Kelly said yesterday they would play with 11. Did you get the sense this was an elective decision?
I think their medical experts weighed in on what was going to happen. That was their decision.

Is there a timeline on when you'll decide on another game?
We're trying to do whatever we can in the next couple hours. That's really what we're looking at. You don't want to wish ill on anyone. You don't want another team to go through what we're having to go through right now. So we're going to run through the list and see what we can do.

Again, it's when they can get here. When they can reconvene and all of those elements.

So there's a limited window?
There's a very limited window, correct.

Was the simple message from UCLA that the medical experts weighed in and the game is off? Was that the call to you?
That's pretty much what the call was at that point in time. And again, during this time period there's not a lot of leeway, not being a doctor, to weigh in on those things.

There are bonuses in contracts tied to 10 wins. If you don't play another game, how would you approach that?
We talk all the time about doing the most right thing. We'll figure out what the most right thing is in this situation. How you going to penalize them?

But more importantly, we've got a group of young men that have come together this year and they came together last year. They went from four wins, then they get to eight, now they get to nine. What they've done and see the leadership that comes through there with everything that's gone on. You see the formation of Pack United, what that means, and the leadership and what that's provided as part of that. Everything we drive is off doing the most right thing, so we'll sit down at some point and figure out all that out.

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