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NC State faces Kentucky in 2021 Gator Bowl

The NC State Wolfpack and Kentucky Wildcats will meet at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville, Florida for the 2021 Gator Bowl.

Head coach Dave Doeren of the North Carolina State Wolfpack watches his team play against the North Carolina Tar Heels during their game at Kenan Stadium on October 24, 2020 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The Tar Heels won 48-21. Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

The North Carolina State Wolfpack and Kentucky Wildcats will face off in the 2021 Gator Bowl. The game will take place at the TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville, Florida, and kickoff is currently scheduled for 12:00 p.m. ET on Saturday, January 2. The game will air on ESPN and be available via live stream at WatchESPN.

The 23rd-ranked NC State Wolfpack (8-3) finished the season in fourth place in the ACC. The Wolfpack are also on a four-game winning streak, with their latest victory over the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. Running back Zonovan McKnight and wide receiver Emeka Emezie are the players to watch for NC State. McKnight has 736 rushing yards on 131 carries and nine touchdowns. He hasn’t had a 100-yard rushing game since October 10 against the Syracuse Orange. But since that game, he’s scored a touchdown in the Wolfpack's last five outings. Emezie is the team’s leading wide receiver with 42 receptions for 694 yards and five touchdowns.

The Kentucky Wildcats (4-6) enter the postseason off a 41-18 win over the South Carolina Gamecocks on December 5th. Against USCe running back Chris Rodriguez Jr. had 139 yards on 14 carries and three touchdowns, and the Wildcats ran for 291 yards and five touchdowns. Rodriguez is a player to watch in this bowl game as he’s rushed for 701 yards and nine touchdowns in 2020 so far.