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NC State’s new No. 16 follows in Russell Wilson’s footsteps

N.C. State has a new No. 16.

That Jakobi Meyers plays quarterback, and is also a standout baseball player and student, made the decision to give the freshman Russell Wilson’s honored jersey an easy one.

N.C. State added Wilson’s No. 16 to its list of honored jerseys in 2014 but instead of retiring it, the number is used as part of a “legends” program.

Wilson was an All-ACC quarterback for the Wolfpack for three seasons from 2008 until 2010. He led the Seattle Seahawks to the NFL championship in 2014 and has helped the Seahawks win two straight NFC titles.

Meyers will wear the No. 16 and a patch with Wilson’s name on his chest underneath his right shoulder.

I told him there’s a lot that goes with that number. It doesn’t mean that he’s going to be the next Russell Wilson. He’s got to prove that, but he definitely has all the attributes that you like.

N.C. State coach Dave Doeren on Jakobi Meyers

Meyers, who played quarterback and shortstop at Arabia Mountain High in Lithonia, Ga., had asked for a few different numbers, including No. 16, N.C. State coach Dave Doeren said. Meyers wore No. 11 in high school.

“I told him there’s a lot that goes with that number,” Doeren said of No. 16. “It doesn’t mean that he’s going to be the next Russell Wilson. He’s got to prove that, but he definitely has all the attributes that you like.”

Like Wilson, Meyers will play both baseball and football at N.C. State. Like Wilson, Meyers was given a two-star rating by Rivals.com. Unlike Wilson, Meyers is listed at 6-foot-2 (and 181 pounds).

Meyers was a late-bloomer in football, Doeren said. He excelled at baseball, and also in the classroom as a member of the National Honor Society.

“He was more of a baseball player,” Doeren said. “They had to talk him into coming out for a football after his sophomore year.”

Meyers threw for 1,834 yards and 23 touchdowns as a senior; he also ran for 534 yards and eight touchdowns. He will start training camp in August behind fifth-year senior Jacoby Brissett and redshirt freshman Jalan McClendon on the depth chart.

In the future, N.C. State will also use the No. 9 the same way to to honor former defensive end Mario Williams, but the number was not issued this season.

N.C. State opens training camp Aug. 3.

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