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NC State star Payton Wilson skipping bowl to prepare for draft


North Carolina State All-American linebacker Payton Wilson won’t play in the Pop-Tarts Bowl, opting instead to ready for the NFL draft.

“Playing football at NC State and training and competing with my teammates has been an experience that I will treasure for the rest of my life,” Wilson posted Sunday to social media. “Now it’s time for me to start to prepare for the next chapter of my football career.”

Wilson said he will be at the game Thursday when the No. 18 Wolfpack face No. 25 Kansas State in Orlando, Fla.

As a sixth-year senior in 2023, Wilson led the Atlantic Coast Conference with 138 tackles, including 17.5 for loss. He also had six sacks and tallied three interceptions, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries.

He earned ACC Defensive Player of the Year honors and won the 2023 Chuck Bednarik Award, given annually to the nation’s top linebacker.

–Field Level Media

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