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NC State Needs to be able To Pass Against Clemson

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When you look at where the Clemson defense is most vulnerable, it has been their inability to stop their opponents passing attack.

Surprisingly, the Tigers rank 48th nationally in Total Defense heading into Week 5, giving up an average of 347.2 yards per game. With a Rush Defense that ranks 8th nationally (78.5 yards per game), Clemson’s Pass Defense, which ranks 104th (267.8 yards per game), is what pushes the Tiger Defense up near 50th in Total Defense.

Opponents Passing Efficiency against Clemson has been 139.64, which ranks 92nd nationally.

Logically, looking at the data above, the game plan for Saturday night would be to unleash Devin Leary. The question is, how much will either team be able to effectively throw the ball with Hurricane Ian moving through the southeast region of the United States this weekend.

If the game is played in a downpour, it will likely come down to who can run the ball better, and both teams will be facing a defense that ranks in the Top-10 nationally in Rush Defense. As stated before, Clemson ranks 8th, and NC State ranks 10th, giving up 81.8 yards per game.

Thankfully for the Wolfpack, Junior Running Back Jordan Houston, who missed last weeks game against UCONN, will be back, as will Redshirt Freshman Demie Sumo-Karngbaye, who sat out the second half against the Huskies.

Last year, in the Wolfpack’s 27-21 2OT victory over the Tigers in Carter-Finley, Leary was 32/44 (72.7%) for 238 yards and 4 touchdowns, with 0 interceptions. That was against a Clemson Defense that finished 2021 ranked 34th in Pass Defense (208.8), 8th in Total Defense (306.3) and 2nd in Scoring Defense (14.8).

Leary hasn’t been as efficient through 4 games in 2022 as he was in 2021, but he’s a gamer. He’s not scared of Clemson. Hopefully weather will permit the Wolfpack quarterback to expose the weakness of the Tiger defense.

 

Matthew is Co-Owner of Pack Insider. He writes for all sports, with a focus on football and recruiting, and is in charge of business strategy. He is an NC State alum who majored in business. Matthew is also the lead pastor of The Point Church in Cary, NC.

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Rev
Rev
1 year ago

Passing: Not so great in a downpour. The predicted weather is NOT our friend

NC State Football

NC State’s Kevin Concepcion Ranks 57th in CBS Sports’ Preseason Top-100 College Football Players

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CBS Sports released their Preseason Top 100 College Football players heading into the 2024 season, and NC State Sophomore Wide Receiver Kevin Concepcion was ranked #57.

57. NC State WR Kevin Concepcion

The rising sophomore is an all-around talent who can beat you in a bunch of ways, but mainly as a receiver. Concepcion rushed for over 300 yards at 7.8 per carry and caught 71 balls and 10 touchdowns for the season. The true freshman lit up the ACC and did most of his damage on the intermediate part of the field but has the speed to make the explosive catches as well. In his second year of college football, I’m positioning Concepcion as a top-10 receiver in the country. (CBS)

ACC Players in the Top-100

24. Clemson LB Barrett Carter

30. Miami QB Cameron Ward

33. Miami DL Rueben Bain Jr.

35. FSU Edge Patrick Payton

57. NC State WR Kevin Concepcion

59. UNC Edge Kaimon Rucker

62. Miami WR Xavier Restrepo

63. Stanford WR Elic Ayomanor

63. UNC RB Omarion Hampton

70. Louisville Edge Tyler Baron

78. Clemson DL TJ Parker

82. Louisville Edge Ashton Gillotte

88. SMU Edge Elijah Roberts

98. Miami OT Francis Mauigoa

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NC State Football

WATCH: Kendrick Raphael was the #2 NC State RB in the Spring Game

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It’s clear that Jordan Waters is NC State’s starting Running Back heading into the 2024 season, but who will be #2 on the Depth Chart? In the Spring Game, Sophomore Kendrick Raphael functioned in that role. I don’t think that’s a guarantee that he will be the #2 Running Back when the Fall rolls around. Redshirt Sophomore Hollywood Smothers might have something to say about that, but nonetheless, Raphael went out their 2nd, and made the most of his opportunities.

With that being said, it’s worth noting Raphael rushed the ball 3 times for times for 39 yards and a touchdown, and also caught one pass.

Check out his tape from the Spring Game.





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Transfer Portal Rundown: Who Transferred Out and Who Transferred In?

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NC State Football

NC State Wide Receiver Julian Gray is Entering the Transfer Portal

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NC State Wide Receiver Julian Gray announced today that he will be entering the Transfer Portal.

This past season, Gray had career highs in receptions (16) and receiving yards (170). He ranked 4th on the team in receptions, and 7th on the team in receiving yards.

Gray has served as NC State’s primary Kickoff Returner the past two seasons, averaging 24.9 yards per return. This past year, he averaged 26.0 yards per carry, which ranked 3rd in the ACC, and 11th nationally. It stands as the 5th best single-season average in school history.

Back in 2021, ON3 ranked Gray as a 4-star prospect, the #197 overall player nationally, and the #13 player in the state of North Carolina.

For the past two seasons, Gray has carried a lot of preseason hype that hasn’t ultimately materialized in the season. I’m not saying that’s Gray’s fault, or his role in the offensive scheme. It is what it is, but with the influx of talented Wide Receivers that the Wolfpack brought in through the Portal and the High School ranks, it seems like Gray if he was looking for an increased role in 2024, it probably wasn’t going to be in Raleigh.

Gray has 2 more years of eligibility remaining.

 

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