Recently a guest columnist at The Technician (NC State’s Student Paper) called for Coach Dave Doeren to be fired. At first this may seem a little hasty given that this is only his third season and the Wolfpack improved dramatically from year 1 to year 2 under Doeren. Last season State won 8 games (including a bowl game) and finished with the 33rd rated recruting class according to ESPN. It appeared that the rebuilding process was beginning to turn the corner…all signs pointed up.
The 2015 season started as predicted. State won the first four games of the season with little trouble given the much scrutinized non-conference schedule. Then the real season started and NC State now finds itself 0-2 in the ACC, an all too familiar theme with Doeren. In his three seasons at the helm, the Wolfpack is a horrendous 3-15 record against ACC teams.
In the first two ACC games the Wolfpack looked overmatched, especially this past Friday at VT. The players seemed disinterested and unprepared. This is a direct reflection on the coaching staff. The team stats are just as putrid. In the two ACC games NC State is averaging 13 points per game and just 249 yards. Let’s not overlook the fact that they have only managed 3 touchdowns as well. It doesn’t get any better on the defensive side as the Pack is ranked in the bottom tier of total defense as they are allowing 332 yards per game, and 24 points per contest. Especially troubling are the big plays State seemingly surrenders every game, in particular on the ground. State ranks 12th (in the ACC) as they have allowed on average 201 yards gained on the ground in the ACC.
Are these reasons for Dave Doeren to be fired right now? Absolutely not. Do NC State fans have justified reason to be frustrated? Yes.
We are only at the halfway point of the season. Things can change in an instant, especially given the fact that State has Clemson and Florida State upcoming. If State can win one of these games, then all of this talk is for naught. A completely different team will have to show up in order for the Pack to have any chance of beating either team. Did NC State miss their chance to do something special in the ACC this season? Probably so. But Doeren still has 6 ACC games in front of him, which is plenty of time to change the current mood.
The bye week could not have come at a better time for State and Doeren. Come October 24th a lot of answers will be revealed as to what we can expect for the rest of the season when NC State travels to Wake Forest.
NC State Locks In an Official Visit with Notre Dame Transfer Center Zeke Correll
NC State is in need of a starting Center (I did confirm with NC State Center Dylan McMahon himself that he is heading to the NFL), and the Wolfpack coaching staff has prioritized Notre Dame Transfer Zeke Correll (6’3″/306). I confirmed with a source that Correll will be on an Official Visit to NC State next weekend.
Correll is a Graduate Transfer, with one year of eligibility remaining. He is a multi-year starter for the Irish, starting in 30 of the 41 games he played in. Out of high school, he was a consensus 4-star prospect, with 247Sports ranking him as the #81 overall player nationally in the 2019 recruiting class.
247Sports ranks Correll as the #3 overall Interior Offensive Lineman in the Portal, and ON3 ranks him 6th. Correll’s strength lies in pass protection, recording a grade of 78.0 according to ProFootballFocus, which was 2nd on the team. His run blocking grade on the other hand was 57.5.
Adding a multi-year starter from the Notre Dame Offensive Line would be a win.
It Looks Like NC State Center Dylan McMahon Will Not be Returning in ‘24
NC State redshirt Junior Center Dylan McMahon was honored on Senior night, but walking on Senior Night doesn’t guarantee that the player won’t return for another season if they are eligible. It has been unknown at this point if McMahon would return for a final season in Raleigh, or enter the 2024 NFL Draft.
It looks like McMahon will be heading to the NFL, after accepting the invitation to play in the 2024 East-West Shrine Bowl.
McMahon is a 4-year starter at NC State, starting in 43 of the 48 games he has played in. ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. ranks McMahon as the #9 Center in the 2024 NFL Draft.
McMahon was a 3-star prospect in NC State’s 2019 recruiting class out of Savannah, Georgia.
Breaking Down NC State’s Assistant Coach Salaries
USAToday runs a report every year on the salaries of Head Football Coaches, Assistant Coaches and Strength Coaches. Here’s a look at the salaries of NC State’s Assistant Coaching staff.
Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers – Tony Gibson – $1.3 million
Offensive Coordinator/Inside Wide Receivers/Tight Ends – Robert Anae – $899,000
Running Backs/Special Teams Coordinator – $548,473
Offensive Line – Garrett Tujague – $520,000
Defensive Line Charley Wiles – $490,023
Assistant Head Coach/Wide Receivers – $482,966
Safeties – Joe Deforest – $430,459
Quarterbacks – Kurt Roper – $430,459
Cornerbacks – Brian Mitchell – $417,205
Nickels – Freddie Aughtry-Lindsay – $330,644
NC State ranks 4th in the ACC in total pay of Assistant Coaches. Tony Gibson is the 2nd highest paid assistant Coach in the ACC (28th overall), and the highest paid Defensive Coordinator. Robert Anae is the 4th highest paid Offensive Coordinator in the ACC, and the 7th highest paid Assistant.
With 9 wins, in accordance with Head Coach Dave Doeren’s contract, the salary pool for Assistant Coaches increases by $300,000. If the Pack wins a 10th game, that number becomes $400,000. (WRAL)
NC State Wants Pop Tarts
NC State wants Pop Tarts. Who doesn’t?
According to Brad Crawford of 247Sports, NC State has requested the Pop Tarts Bowl, which will be played on December 28th in Orlando, Florida.
You might be like, I’ve never heard of the Pop-Tarts bowl. That’s because this is the first rendition of the Pop Tarts Bowl, but it used to go by other names you might be familiar with: Cheez-It, Camping World, Russell Athletic, Champs Sports, Tangerine, Micron PC, Carquest, and Blockbuster (the last three were when the bowl was in Miami).
Below is an updated list of 15 bowl projections, with 12 of the 15 picking NC State to go to the Pop-Tarts Bowl.
(The three above the line have changed their projections since my last bowl projections post on 11/28.)
The Athletic – Pop-Tarts Bowl – NC State vs. Kansas State – December 28th – Orlando, FLA
CBS Sports – Pop-Tarts Bowl vs. Oklahoma State – January 1st – Tampa, FLA
College Football News – Pop Tarts Bowl vs. Kansas State – December 29th – Jacksonville, FLA
OddShark – Bad Boy Mowers Pinstripe Bowl – NC State vs. Rutgers – December 28th – New York City, New York
Covers.com – Pop-Tarts Bowl – NC State vs. Oklahoma – December 28th – Orlando, FLA
USA Today – Pop-Tarts Bowl – NC State vs. Oklahoma State – December 28th – Orlando, FLA
247Sports – Pop-Tarts Bowl vs. Kansas State – December 28th – Orlando, FLA
Athlon – Pop-Tarts Bowl – NC State vs. Kansas State – December 28th – Orlando, FLA
ESPN – Pop-Tarts Bowl – NC State vs. Oklahoma State – December 28th – Orlando, FLA
ESPN – Gator Bowl – NC State vs. Tennessee – December 29th – Jacksonville, FLA
Sporting News – Pop-Tarts Bowl – NC State vs. Oklahoma – December 28th – Orlando, FLA
Fox Sports – Pop-Tarts Bowl – NC State vs. Oklahoma State – December 28th – Orlando, FLA
Action Network – Pop-Tarts Bowl – NC State vs. Kansas State – December 28th – Orlando, FLA
College Football Network – Sun Bowl – NC State vs. USC – December 29th, El Paso, TX
Betting Pros – Pop-Tarts Bowl – NC State vs. Kansas State – December 28th – Orlando, FLA