NC State vs ODU
After dodging a bullet in week 1, NC State looks to settle down and get back to business against ODU in week 2. Last Saturday may have been a little harder on your heart than you were expecting, but a win is a win and there were a lot of lessons learned moving into this matchup with ODU.
One thing we got to see was the coming out part for Jacoby Brissett. The transfer from Florida shook off the nerves in the second half to lead the Pack back from a 14pt halftime deficit to claim their first victory.
This week they welcome Conference USA foe ODU to Carter-Finley. This is a team that is probably more talented top to bottom than Georgia Southern, however one that State can surely beat (if they execute). Old Dominion is 1-0 after taking out Hampton 41-28. Now, this team isn’t one to sleep on. Last year they finished 1-4 against FBS opponents, but that record could have been a little better had their defense been a little stronger. They scored 38pts against ECU, dropped 24 on Pitt and put 20 on UNC. Not bad for a school who football team is only 7 years old. The problem was their defense which gave up 52pts to ECU, 35 to Pitt and then a whopping 80 to UNC.
This year the ODU defense it a little more experienced and a bit deeper, but still nothing to hang their hat on. State will need to sure up their own defense if they want to run away with this game. Last week they seemed slow at times, missed tackles and assignments. That can’t happen this week or the Monarchs will make them pay. Their offense can definitely get hot with the likes of senior QB Taylor Heinicke (who threw for 280yds and 3 TDs last week) and sophomore RB Gerard Johnson (who rushed for 137 yds and a touchdown against Hampton.)
For State it’s going to be about calming down and executing. In the first half against Georgia Southern they seemed timid and unsure of themselves. They had trouble establishing a run game, putting most of the pressure on Brissett who was playing his first game in red and white. This week I expect a different game plan of sorts. Here are some things to watch out for:
1) Shadrach Thornton getting carries early and often.
It wasn’t until the second half that Shad really got rolling. Maybe it was because he only touched the ball twice in the 1st half. Now, Matt Dayes is going to get his chances, but I think Doeren saw how the offense can really move with Thornton running hungry (10 carries for 73yds).
2) Brissett being unleashed
With a win (a comeback win at that) under his belt, look for Brissett to be more assertive and really lead his team this week. Early against Georgia Southern it was as if he was waiting to step up while the rest of the team was waiting for him to do just that. In the second half, when it was do or die you saw the real Jacoby Brissett as he connected on 3 TDs and finished with 291 yds. His reads where quick and his release was quicker as he moved State down the field with ease. As his confidence grows and he becomes more comfortable in this offense you’ll start to see what this kid can really do.
3) A defense that thinks less and reacts more
This defense actually isn’t all that bad. It’s young, but it’s talented. In week 1 there was definitely some jitters and some questioning going on. In the second half when State started making their run and the offense started pulling their weight, it was as if the defense saw that they had to pick up the slack. They did and got some key quick stops, allowing the comeback to continue. With an experienced QB under center for ODU, State is going to have to keep the pressure on and the intensity up. Fall asleep and the Monarchs will make you pay.
4) Black unis.
Look, I know State fans for the most part are a little old school and prefer the red and the white, it’s 2014 and looking at our record over the past few years we aren’t really in a place to “be above” the current jersey trends. The kids like it, the younger fans like it, the school makes some nice money off of it, so let’s just embrace the black jerseys for once and see what happens.
PACK REWIND: Check out NC State’s Hype Highlight Reel from Their Victory Over UNC
NC State Football Players Can Earn a Minimum of $25k Through Pack of Wolves NIL Collective in 2023
On Monday, news broke that the Pack of Wolves NIL Collective is guaranteeing that NC State scholarship Football players will have the opportunity to make a minimum of $25k in 2023.
Pack of Wolves NIL Collective today announced a strategic move to ensure that N.C. State football student–athletes can remain competitive in the NIL landscape. The program, called “Leading the Pack,“ creates opportunities for these student–athletes to engage in NIL activities in the community this next calendar year, where they could earn a minimum of $25,000 based upon an individual analysis of the NIL value that each student–athlete brings.
“We sought to create an enhanced NIL organization with a high standard of trust and accountability that honors N.C. State’s excellence,“ said Charlie Stallings, chairman of the board for Pack of Wolves collective. “We have worked hard to pair businesses, brands, and local charities with N.C. State football student–athletes. This behind–the–scenes work has brought us to the point where we can make this significant commitment today. Football student–athletes will go out into the community monthly with the opportunity to earn $25,000 or more annually. These engagements can be charitable appearances working with youth in the community, partnering with the businesses or brands who have contributed, and more.“
“We are excited about the continued expansion of Name, Image, and Likeness opportunities available to N.C. State student–athletes,“ said Dave Doeren, N.C. State football coach. “We are particularly proud that they can use their platform to impact the greater North Carolina community and its philanthropic organizations.“
Several local charities have already signed on to participate, including Gigi’s Playhouse of Raleigh, N.C., the Boys & Girls Clubs of Wake County, Dress for Success Triangle N.C., The Harrelson Center of Wilmington, N.C., SAFEchild, and the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina. (Link)
The ‘Leading the Pack’ program is similar to one at Texas Tech, where 100 team members were guaranteed $25k annually.
It is timely for this announcement to come out when it did, because on December 5th, the Transfer Portal officially opens.
NC State Ranked 25th in Week 14 College Football Playoff Top-25 Rankings
After defeating rival UNC 30-27 in double-overtime last Friday, NC State is back in the College Football Playoff Top-25 Rankings that were just released, landing at #25.
Week 14 CFP Top 25
5 Ohio St
8 Penn St
10 Kansas St
13 Florida St
15 Oregon St
19 S Carolina
24 Miss State
25 NC State
NC State Place Kicker Chris Dunn is a Finalist for the Lou Groza Award
NC State Place Kicker Chris Dunn is a Finalist for the Lou Groza Award, given out annually to the best place kicker in college football. The other two finalists are Joshua Karty of Stanford (first place kicker to not miss a field goal (18-18) in a season since 2013) and Jake Moody of Michigan (reigning Lou Groza Award winner).
Dunn, a graduate student from Lexington, North Carolina, capped a record-setting career with his finest single season, going 24-for-25 on field goals. Both the total field goals and the 96.0% rate rank second in FBS this season, while his accuracy was the best by kickers with at least 20 attempts. 17 of those kicks came from at least 30 yards out, also the second-most in the country. Already the NC State program leader in both field goals and scoring, this season he set the ACC career records in those categories. (LouGroza)
If Dunn were to win, he would become the 2nd player in NC State history to win the Lou Groza Award, joining Marc Primanti, who won it in 1996.
Earlier this week, Dunn was named 1st Team All-ACC.