Patterson chooses NC State to continue education

Patterson chooses NC State to  continue education
July 29
14:07 2022

Choosing where you are going to further your education and athlete endeavors is a tough choice. There are many things to consider while going through the process. For Lance Patterson, in the end the NC State Wolfpack offered the best opportunity for him to continue his athletic and academic career.

Patterson is no stranger to NC State as two of his older siblings have attended the school and played sports. That familiarity was a strong attraction for Patterson.

“I have been around NC State since my brother went there, so I know it’s a great school to go to, the environment is great, and also their facilities are really nice and they have a good program overall,” Patterson said about why he chose NC State.

“There were a lot of HBCUs like Fayetteville State, Winston-Salem State and Central looking at me, but when I went to visit NC State, I just fell in love there.”

Patterson will head to State on a track and field scholarship. He was also a standout football player for Mt. Tabor during his prep career and will walk on to the Wolfpack football team.

College is a big transition for a high school student. Not only will Patterson have to deal with the rigors of college courses, he will also have to carry his load on the track and football field, which is a lot to juggle for a freshman. He is ready for the work, he says.

“I was having a lot of injuries with football last year, so first I am going to be running track at NC State to get stronger and in the spring, I am going to walk on and play football,” Patterson said about his plans freshman year. “I know the coaches and they know me, but I am going down there for track first, so freshman year it’s all about track.”

Patterson specializes in the 200 and the 400-meter dash races. He feels his combination of stamina and speed makes him a better 400-meter runner. His personal best in the 400-meter dash is 48.6 seconds and his best 200 time is 21.9.

There is a strong legacy that Patterson will leave at Mt. Tabor. He was MVP of the state championship game at the end of his junior season. He also set a record this year in the 4×200 meter relay this past track season. He says he will miss his friends, the teachers and the support he received throughout his high school career.

Patterson says he knows he is going from a big fish in a small pond in high school to being a new fish in college. He is prepared for the grind that college life has to offer.

“There are always nerves going to a new place and not being the top dog how you used to be,” he says. “I love the atmosphere and I love to be challenged, so I feel like I am going to thrive in that atmosphere.”

Patterson enlisted the help of his two older siblings who know what it’s like running track for the Wolfpack. His older brother ran for NC State and his sister is currently a senior on the team as well.  

“First of all, we have been working out this summer. He has been training me to make sure I am in shape and that I have my mechanics down,” said Patterson about his brother. “He has given me advice to stay focused because it’s going to be a lot of parties, a lot of people and a lot of peer pressure, but I am not there to party, I am there to be a student athlete.”

Patterson’s sister has given him the inside track on some of the workouts to expect once he arrives on campus. Having been there makes his transition much easier, he said.

“She has shown me the ropes already and just having her there is making things easier and made me feel a little more at home already,” he said about his sister.

Lance thanked his parents for all of their support throughout thus far in his life. He says they have been pushing him to be the best person he can be in the classroom, as well as on the field of play.

“They are my biggest supporters,” Patterson said about his parents. “My dad and my mom mean the world to me. They push me forward and make me strive for the best. Sometimes I try to settle and they tell me I can do bigger and better. They just push me to where I need to be and that’s why I am where I am today.”

Patterson says even though he really enjoys running track, football is his first love. He says with the weight program on the next level, he will be physically prepared for football in the spring.

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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