Friday night’s men’s soccer game versus Notre Dame, which the team won 2-0, was the team’s #SetTheExpectation game, the first for an NCAA men’s soccer program. Redshirt senior goalkeeper Vinnie Durand has been one of the student-athletes, along with football’s James Smith-Williams and others, who have gone above and beyond to help promote the cause.
“So Brenda Tracy, an amazing woman with an amazing story,” Durand said. “And she touched the hearts of pretty much every single guy on my team, if not the whole team, even our coaching staff. And once we heard her originally last April, I went to Lindsay, our Director of Operations and Raymond Harrison, our AD at the time and just said, ‘Look, how can I help’ and Kuda [Muskwe] and I came together and we envisioned exactly tonight. And to have it all happen to have Brenda be able to come. I mean, that's just, it's so important. It's crucial and to be the first NCAA men's soccer program to have it. I mean, you guys listen to Brenda, listen to her story. And I hope more programs follow and I know that the guys younger than they are going to continue with the SetTheExpectation movement.”
Brenda Tracy, a survivor of sexual assault, founded the movement and gave a speech at NC State to all male student-athletes in April telling her story. The speech inspired a number of student-athletes across the different programs and in September the football team also hosted a #SetTheExpectation game when it took on Ball State.
“Yeah, and I said it at the beginning of the game,” men’s soccer head coach George Kiefer said. “You know, a lot of times as a coach and you have speakers come in, you nudge your players to get good reactions out of them and kind of walk them through the water to help them. In this case, they were completely driven once they heard her speak and it was completely student athlete driven. And you know, before the game in the pregame I thought it was pretty cool of them to do that. And you know, having a daughter myself, for men to step up. When you hear what goes on. I give the guys a lot of credit for that. I was really proud to be their coach because it was completely driven by them.”
Tracy brought out the game ball along with Smith-Williams prior to the match. #SetTheExpectation is a movement that combats sexual and physical violence by educating and advocating players, coaches, young men and boys to be a part of the solution.