Why Nyheim Hines chose NC State over Virginia Tech, Wake and UNC

NC State running back Nyheim Hines was a featured guest on The David Glenn Show. Hines discussed his ties to Bryce Love, why he chose NC State over other prominent ACC programs, and his bond with this sister.

Click below to hear his answer or view the full transcript below.


Hear more: David Glenn: The UNC ‘copycat theory’ doesn’t hold up


Audio Transcript

David Glenn: Nyheim Hines is with us now. He was a superstar back at Garner High School. One of the most coveted players in this state, years ago. He’s now already an All-ACC track star for the Wolfpack, and thanks to amazing numbers during the Wolfpack’s 6-1 start, you can also call him one of the best running backs in the ACC, one of the best kick returners, and one of the best punt returners. His all-purpose yardage totals are up there with the likes of Saquon Barkley of Penn State and Bryce Love of Stanford. Nyheim Hines, welcome to the David Glenn Show. How are you?

Nyheim Hines: I’m doing great. I’m a big fan of the show, so I’m excited to be on it.

David Glenn: That’s awesome. I appreciate you saying that. Tell me this, is it an old joke at this point to say that Heinz Field at Pittsburgh, spelled after the ketchup, should be now spelled, Hines Field, H-I-N-E-S? Or is it still a good line, even this much later, because it brings up so many good memories?

Nyheim Hines: Good line for me, it’s funny. Nobody says anything about it, but I saw a lot of jokes about it on Twitter and State Football tagged me in a tweet about it, so I think it’s still funny.

David Glenn: In the moment, nobody really had that. You just found out about it later, because Gary Hahn mentioned it on the air, Wolfpack fans were tweeting me left and right. That’s funny, you found out about it later yourself.

Nyheim Hines: I was excited to play at Heinz Field. Obviously my last name, but it’s where the Pittsburgh Steelers play. Antonio Brown’s one of my favorite players, so I was just excited to be on the same field he’s been on for years.

David Glenn: For those who missed it, an 83-yard touchdown run by our guest, Nyheim Hines. Shortly followed by a 92-yard punt return, for a touchdown. I’ve seen guys get yelled at when they catch a punt at the six or eight yard line, every once in a while. What was that line for you, because in this case catching it at the eight turned out really, really well for the Wolfpack?

Nyheim Hines: I talked to my coach about it and he said it was a good decision. Coach McDonald and Coach Doeren, they really harp on making great decisions. I had enough space to catch it and even if I fair caught it or let it bounce, the field position could have been worse. I think I made a great decision and obviously I’m happy I made the decision.

David Glenn: Nyheim Hines is number four in the nation in all-purpose yardage. Two of the guys above you, Saquon Barkley of Penn State and Bryce Love of Stanford, a guy I think you know personally. Those guys are number one and number two in the Heisman Trophy conversation, where’s the Nyheim Hines part of that conversation right now?

Nyheim Hines: I don’t know. I just let my play speak for itself. I really didn’t know anything about my statistics with all-purpose yardage until yesterday, when somebody tagged me on Twitter. That’s been really humbling for me to know I’m even up there and that’s great company for me to be with and even be mentioned with, so I’m excited to hear that.

David Glenn: We know that you’re from Garner High originally. We know that Bryce Love of Stanford is from the Triangle, as well. We didn’t know that you’d both end up among the best players in the nation. Tell us, how far back does that relationship go? It’s pretty cool that both of you guys are getting the spotlight right now.

Nyheim Hines: Yes, sir. First off, Bryce and I, we grew up with Keith Marshall and Marcus Marshall. People that are also really well known. We’ve known each other since we were about nine or 10-years-old. All of our fathers coached together on Carolina Elite, our track team. Really, it’s something we’ve all talked about. Keith’s a little bit older than us, but Marcus, Bryce and I, we talked about in high school how we could really have a huge impact on the college football scale and that we all just need to hold up to our ends of the bargain. And Marcus is doing a great job at James Madison after he transferred. And Bryce obviously stole the show of the nation. Bryce is doing really well. I talked to Bryce last weekend; I’m really excited to see how Bryce is doing and everybody in the nation is really just trying to keep up with Bryce Love, honestly.

David Glenn: Both of you guys have tunnel vision with your football. A lot of academic stuff to take care of, as well. Is there time, besides that occasional phone call, for you guys to text or use social media or whatever else it is that young star athletes do these days?

Nyheim Hines: I use social media some, but I really don’t pay attention to it, because it can be a good thing and it can make you complacent. Or it can also be a bad thing if you see something you don’t like. Really, I try to retweet things, you favorite things, but I don’t really tweet much or say much. I just normally go there for news, like seeing weather, or just sport events. Other than that, I normally just focus on academics and try to play video games after I am done studying.

David Glenn: I don’t know how many things we have in common Nyheim, but certain fears of social media might be one of those things. You’re already an All-ACC track sprinter. Are there things that you learn in one sport that help in the other, or are these just two totally different animals and challenges?

Nyheim Hines: I’ve learned a lot from track. It’s helped me to actually be tough and play through tiredness because in track, if you run over a 100 meters, you’re going to be tired. Especially in the 200 or the 400 hurdles, which I’ve ran. Honestly, I think my track background helps me have big runs because before this week, all my big runs were in the second half. And I feel like I just have a second gear in the second half. And I think Bryce can also attest to that. Bryce has had some big runs in the second half. I think it comes from our background in track.

David Glenn: It’s been fun to see you back at running back after playing elsewhere for the Wolfpack earlier in your career. If we had the track coach and the football or strength and conditioning coaches in the room at the same time, are they both telling you the same thing? Does the Nyheim Hines track sprinter body differ from the Nyheim Hines running back, kick return, punt return body? Can you shift from spring to fall that way?

Nyheim Hines: They’ve doing a great job keeping my body pretty well. I’m a little bit lighter than last year, because I feel like I was a little bit too heavy. And I think coach did a great job making me leaner, but also making me have more muscle mass. I think really right now I’m still having a track body, but I’m liking the results I have. And I’m just putting more muscle on me so I don’t have injuries.

David Glenn: I’d say it’s working out pretty well. Nyheim Hines is joining us on The David Glenn Show. All right, so you have a twin sister, and her name is, Nyha. I don’t know what the story is exactly, but Nyheim, Nyah, and she’s a track star. How does that impact your world? Do you see her all the time because you’re on the same campus, or is it even tough for brother and sister to get together a lot as you’re both superstars in your own right?

Nyheim Hines: First off, I can say Nyah’s literally my guardian angel. Nyah’s the reason I came to NC State and decided to come here. It was her first track offer and I wanted to go to school with Nyah. I don’t see Nyah much on campus, but every time I see her on campus, I think I’ve seen her four times in three years, so I always put it on Snapchat when we see each other. But we live in the same place. I actually signed my lease where I live and didn’t even look at it, but I knew my sister was going there, so I just signed a lease and went with one of my friends. Really, I see Nyah all the time. I don’t cook as much as Ny, because I’m a little bit more busy, so I always go up there and she cooks dinner. We always find ways to annoy each other. You know how brothers and sisters are. But Nyah’s my best friend. We just have a twin telepathic connection. And I mean there’s so many things I could say, I could talk all day about Nyah. But Nyah’s been really a sunshine in my life, personally.

David Glenn: That’s really cool. Now I’m a believer, Nyheim, that I for example, even as an older guy. I say how much I love my mom out loud. I will never apologize for that, I don’t care if I lose “the man card”, I don’t care if my buddies make fun of me. I love my mom. Now you’re sounding very comfortable in your own skin describing your sister that way. Can that get you in trouble in the testosterone-driven world of a locker room, or are you so comfortable in your own skin that you’re just going to talk about Nyah that way and nobody’s going to give you a hard time?

Nyheim Hines: Nobody really gives me a hard time, other than saying Nyah’s probably faster than me. But she is, by the way, I’m a smart man. No, most of the team knows I have a twin sister and most of my teammates know I originally came here with a plan to come with my sister, so it’s really comfortable talking to the team about my sister.

David Glenn: Hines is a great last name, given the whole ketchup family fortune that’s coming your way. That’s a joke, everybody. But Nyheim and Nyah, is there a story behind that? Does that go back in the family, like an elder or anything? Or is that, we’re going to start brother and sister’s names with the first two letters the same and vary from there?

Nyheim Hines: Well firstly, my mom’s name is, Nannette, and I think she wanted both our names to begin with an ‘N’. And actually her license plate is three N’s down, so for: Nyheim, Nyah and Nanette. And actually there’s not really a funny story other than she told me ‘Nyheim’ means, peace-maker and protector. And also that I was named, Zine, for three days and Nyah was named, Zoey. And my mom’s mom, she’s now deceased. She said those names were [inaudible 00:08:55], so apparently my mom came up with, Nyheim and Nyah after that.

David Glenn: State troopers, now that you have the license plate, if you happen to pull over, Mrs. Hines, you let her go.

Nyheim Hines: Yes, please help my mom out.

David Glenn: I loved watching you as a recruit at Garner. You were just an impressive young man. Still are, on and off the field. I remember you checking out Virginia Tech. I think you checked out, Wake Forest. I think Carolina talked to you. Now you mentioned about wanting to follow Nyah to NC State. In the broader sense, what made Wolfpack football the right fit for you compared to, I know you had a whole lot of alternatives, even beyond the ones I just mentioned?

Nyheim Hines: Really, in the recruiting process, recruits should know that it’s really not who you can say “yes” to, it’s who you can’t say “no” to. And it seemed like everybody else, there could be question or doubt in some aspect of recruiting, but I felt like State was the one school where I was just like, no, I can’t sa … Nyah and I also couldn’t say, “no”, to it. So, eventually we had to say, “yes”.

David Glenn: Your next two opponents at Notre Dame, Clemson. Both are actually at least for now, even a little higher in those national rankings than your Wolfpack is, what’s the message from Coach Doeren, what’s your message to your teammates here during the off-week as you guys have accomplished a tremendous amount already at 6-1, and undefeated in conference play, but there’s plenty of work still left ahead?

Nyheim Hines: We actually haven’t talked about Clemson at all this year. Coach Doeren does a great job of telling us to keep a one-win mentality on them. In the locker room, he took down our whole schedule. Literally it just says, “today and yesterday.” And it will have the team we’re playing. This week I think it says, “bye”.

David Glenn: Wow.

Nyheim Hines: Literally, we start Notre Dame today and we’re focusing on Notre Dame. And he’s really telling us that the hype and everything is good, but we all came here to NC State for a reason. To build a legacy. And we have to have a one-win mentality to build a legacy and keep everything that we want in check.

David Glenn: As a young athlete, Nyheim, in baseball, I’ll never forget a game where I gave up 13 earned runs. That was really, really bad. Do you flash back at all to something like Death Valley, where unlike my horrible story where I just got wiped out. You guys were a chip shot field goal away from one of the greatest regular season victories in the history of Wolfpack football. Is it in your personality to simply turn the page and never think about it again, or does something like that occasionally creep into your mind?

Nyheim Hines: I believe it creeps in all of our minds, but for a different reason. We use it as motivation. I feel like all throughout the off-season, we lost all of our games in the fourth quarter. And it was probably two or three plays that we could have made that we’d missed. Really, I think all of our losses are really something we think about and I think it’s something that we use to drive us and motivate us to make us compete even harder. And every time we feel like we can’t finish a rep, we think of moments like that to make us be better.

David Glenn: Nyheim, besides football and however far that takes you at NC State and even beyond, what else do you want to be when you grow up, because you sound like a young man that could do a lot of different things if you wanted to?

Nyheim Hines: I plan on getting my degree in IT, information technology. I have a hardware, trouble-shooting background. I used to fix my Xbox a little bit when I was younger. I love technology and I want to see if I’d like to keep going into software, or just do trouble-shooting for information technology.