Mark Gottfried's North Carolina State team was the last at-large squad in the 2014 NCAA Tournament field. We know this because the NCAA releases its 1-68 official seed list, and the last at-large name identified is the Wolfpack.

But barely getting in the field doesn't matter -- once it's official. Just get in and see what happens. And what happened Tuesday night was a really good sign for N.C. State fans, because their team just took out Xavier with a certain amount of ease. It ended 74-59 in Dayton.

The 22-13 Wolfpack got 25 points from sophomore stud forward T..J. Warren, who had 16 in the second half. It was the ACC Player of the Year's 30th 20-point game of the season. Wild. He also broke a program record Tuesday night, totaling 843 points for this season, adjusting the Wolfpack bar. Passing names like David Thompson, Rodney Monroe and Kenny Carr.

Xavier gets to drive 45 minutes home tonight after enjoying the fleeting, second-rate experience of going to the NCAA Tournament.

For N.C. State, it's a whole new level that's coming. And it seems pretty likely this team will be a chic pick to beat slumping Saint Louis in the 5/12 matchup that tips at 7:20 p.m. Thursday in Orlando. The Billikens have dropped four of five and failed -- even more than usual -- to get their offense clicking.