In case N.C. State sophomore Bradley Chubb ever needs a reminder about his place in the family pecking order, older brother Brandon, a senior at Wake Forest, has a video clip on his phone at the ready.
Twice the Chubb brothers locked up on special teams last year when N.C. State and Wake Forest met in Raleigh, and both times, even Bradley concedes, big brother got the best of the encounter.
“He sends it to me every now and then,” Bradley Chubb said. “I was young and didn’t know what to do yet.”
Little brother will get another shot at big brother Saturday in Winston-Salem when N.C. State (4-2) faces off against Wake Forest (3-4) at noon (Fox Sports Carolinas).
The Chubb family will have BB&T Field surrounded, with brothers on opposing sidelines and 40 family members and friends in the stands. The football-crazed family from Marietta, Ga., will be easy to spot. Stacey Chubb, the boys’ mother, had special shirts made up in half N.C. State colors and half Wake Forest colors.
“We’re just trying to have a little fun with it,” said Aaron Chubb, their father, a former football standout in college.
Football is in the Chubb family DNA. Aaron, who played defensive end and linebacker – both of his sons’ positions – started for three years for Vince Dooley at Georgia from 1985 through ’88 and was drafted by the New England Patriots. His older cousin, Henry, played at Valdosta State in the early 1980s, and Henry’s son, Nick, is the star running back for the Bulldogs.
Wired within the family football gene is a love of competition. There is no shortage of sports, video games or simple contests in which the Chubb brothers engage.
Bradley, at 6-foot-4 and 260 pounds, has always had an edge in basketball on Brandon, who’s three years older but three inches shorter (6-1, 245 pounds).
Brandon says he got the best of younger brother in Madden football, but the competition doesn’t stop there.
“Who can eat more, who can eat the fastest, who could do more pushups, who could throw a rock the farthest,” their father said. “You name it, they competed in everything, and they always wanted to outdo each other.”
Brandon, a three-year starter for the Demon Deacons, has emerged as the leader of the young team.
He leads the Deacs in solo tackles (31) and total tackles (60). A preseason All-ACC pick, he had a team-best nine tackles and a fumble recovery in Wake’s 3-0 win at Boston College two weeks ago.
The Deacs followed up the unusual, low-scoring win at Boston College with a 50-14 letdown at North Carolina last week.
Brandon said they were busy celebrating their win against the Eagles when they should have been more focused on the Tar Heels.
“We were basking a little too long; that kind of hurt us,” Brandon said. “That’s what happens with a young and inexperienced team. But (the loss to UNC) definitely humbled us, and we can learn from it.”
Bradley’s in his first season as a starter at defensive end for the Wolfpack. He leads the team with quarterback hurries (five) and has 16 tackles.
Family duty still trumps competition. The brothers talked Monday night and will again Friday, which is their weekly routine.
Brandon understands his responsibility as the older brother. In their weekly chats, there are football details to be covered, but that’s not the only topic of conversation.
“What we talk about most is college life and how he’s doing,” Brandon said.
Their father said that Brandon has always looked out for his younger brother and has been a role model to Bradley.
“He has always looked up to his big brother and always wanted to be like him and make his brother proud of him,” Aaron Chubb said.
Little brother and N.C. State got the best of big brother last year in Raleigh with a 42-13win. But the Wolfpack hasn’t won at Wake Forest since 2001, a trend Brandon would like to see continue.
Their parents can’t lose, either way.
“It’s a bittersweet situation, but there’s nothing but pride and enjoyment to see them live out their dreams,” Aaron Chubb said. “They’ve both worked so hard to get to the level that they’re at.”
Giglio: 919-829-8938, @jwgiglio