If it were up to fanbases to make coaching decisions, there would need to be 100 D1 seats filled each and every football season. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; being a football coach of a Power 5 school is brutal. When the fanbase hasn’t seen much success? It gets even worse.
Saturday brings yet another prime opportunity for NC State to take a step forward. While Clemson is #9 in the country, this is without question their most vulnerable squad in a number of seasons.
And in the end, the results won’t matter to many.
If State Loses
My God. Two weeks ago, WPN was a disaster, and rightfully so. While every loss brings out the ugly in a fanbase, this one seemed to strike a deeper nerve. State had a chance to go on the road and beat a middle of the road SEC team and they fell woefully short.
That’s the State way.
Since taking over State in the 2013 season, Doeren’s teams are 4-19 against top-25 teams. The wins include FSU (12), Louisville (17), Pitt (24) and Liberty (21). Furthermore, there hasn’t been any consistency in these “upsets” with two coming in 2017 and the latter two games last year. That said, find humor in it if you please, Doeren is UNDEFEATED AGAINST RANKED TEAMS…if you only look at FCS matchups.
So a Clemson loss shouldn’t be anything new, but I would argue, it would be.
When defending a coach, you continue to find reasons why it hasn’t worked, why people should give them another chance. Yet, it will become increasingly harder to almost near impossible if things fall apart again. This team has talent and experience…Clemson is struggling…It’s a home game in beautiful Carter-Finley.
No more if’s, and’s or but’s…we need a damn win.
If we don’t, there will be quite the subset of WPN that won’t be coming back until a coaching change is made. Not to say they won’t watch this team on Saturdays, but their literal investment in them won’t be the same.
We’re all done losing. We want to win.
If State Wins
This is the dream right? This is the monkey off the back? State will be 3-3 against ranked opponents over the last two seasons, we’re moving up, right?
Here’s where my aforementioned struggles of coaching a Power 5 team that has underachieved hits hardest. For if State beats Clemson, then the only next step for many in WPN is an ACC Championship Game appearance.
It’s as brutal, as it is true.
When you take down the ACC dragon, you can’t slip up against a struggling Louisville or a Syracuse, or heaven forbid, LA Tech the very next weekend. Every ounce of pressure will be on Doeren and any further loss, especially in conference, will be that much bigger of a dagger into the hearts of WPN.
“We finally beat Clemson and all we got was this Third Place in the Atlantic T-shirt.”
I have mixed feelings on Doeren, but I always tend to skew towards keeping him. Tell me I’m settling, but I also don’t mind knowing we’ll be at somewhere around 8-9 wins a year. However, the overall conference record and history against ranked opponents is brutal. At some point, winning is all fun until you realize a sizable chunk is FCS and just dogsh*t schools.
Either Doeren’s seat is in flames by 6pm Saturday or WPN has poured gasoline allllllllll around it, just waiting to light the match. It’s not a position I’d like to be in, but I also realize that’s part of the job description.
Regardless, there will be a steady stream of record reminders. There will be debates in the parking lot pre and post game, and swigs of Old Tuffy in C-F with a yell.
For now, I just hope we win. #GoPack