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Sunday, June 28, 2009

CFN Preview Of State For 2009


CFN Preview

The folks at CFN always do a pretty comprehensive breakdown of State football in the months leading up to the season opener. Here's their 2009 breakdown, along with links to their grading of the offensive, defensive and special teams units. Here are the unit grades:

- Quarterbacks: 8
- Running Backs: 7
- Receivers: 7
- Offensive Line: 6.5
Average Offensive Rating: 7.125

- Defensive Line: 8
- Linebackers: 7.5
- Secondary: 6.5
Average Defensive Rating: 7.33

Special Teams Rating: 7.5

View the complete entry of "CFN Preview Of State For 2009"

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Excellent Read: Mario Williams Article On SI.com


SI.com piece

The "Mario Williams was the right draft choice after all" articles are almost played out at this point. But you know what? I still love reading them.

Here's an excerpt from this one:
The Texans remained steadfast that time would justify their decision. Turns out they were right. In fact, the No. 2 and No. 3 selections may well go down as Dumb and Dumber. Bush is injury-prone and not nearly as effective as during his rookie year. Young is riding the bench, prone for bizarre off-field behavior.

Since his rookie season, Bush has played just 22 games and rushed for 985 yards and six touchdowns. That's less than Texans' 2008 third-round pick Steve Slaton (1,282-yards, nine TDs) had in 2008 alone.

Young was injured, then benched. He never picked up the Titans' offense as he was replaced by Kerry Collins. Young has thrown just 10 touchdowns against 19 interceptions since his rookie season. Last year, he reached a disturbing low, sulking, refusing to re-enter one game and going M.I.A., with police reporting that friends, family and coaches worried about Young's "emotional well-being."

Thus the question again as we look behind the scenes of the '06 draft and Williams approaches 2009 with legitimate lofty expectations: Were the Texans brilliant or just lucky?

I'll go ahead and call 'em brilliant. They deserve it.

View the complete entry of "Excellent Read: Mario Williams Article On SI.com"

Friday, June 26, 2009

Yet Another N.C. State ... Football Commitment!


Logan Winkles

Logan may be the most badass person ever with the last name "Winkles." His film sure backs that assertion up. A two-way player at the high school level at linebacker and tight end, Tom O'Brien extended an offer to Logan at FB today at camp and he accepted it almost on the spot.

Here's what ESPN has to say about him:
Its hard not to come away liking Winkles as a total football on film. He's a productive two-way player at the high school level showing good tools and ability at both linebacker and tight end. While he displays reliable hands and the ability to shield defenders and absorb the big hit, we feel he will most likely get recruited at inside linebacker. Lacks ideal height but is very thick, compact and durable. Has a good nose for finding the football. Flashes good strength and short-area power at the point of attack and is very stout downhill filler between the tackles. Consistently jolts blockers back showing striking upper-body strength and better-than-adequate leverage. Very difficult to turn out of the hole when he fills fast downhill; a guy who will certainly blow up the fullback iso and be productive versus two-back power schemes. Strong, punishing tackler who drives through from his hips.

He's a tremendous student (3.4 GPA), has solid pass catching skills and, from what I've seen on the video below, a solid motor that will translate into some ferocious blocks at the line of scrimmage on opposing linebackers. State hasn't had a real nasty fullback in a while (all due respect, of course, to past FBs in recent years), but Winkles could develop into one.

Here's his highlight reel from YouTube:

Per the information section of the video:

Logan Winkles

Upson-Lee High
Thomaston, GA
2008 Season
Junior 16 yrs old
Graduation Year: 2010
GPA: 3.4
DOB: August 17, 1992

235 lbs
6 foot 2 inches
40yd time - 4.6
Squat - 480 lbs
Bench - 330 lbs
Clean - 310 lbs

View the complete entry of "Yet Another N.C. State ... Football Commitment!"

Thursday, June 25, 2009

... And Another Football Commitment!


Damn, Tom...you're keeping me busy today.

State lands another Georgia prospect today, safetly/linebacker D.J. Green. He's got great size for a safety at 6'4" and over 200 lbs., though his 40 time is a little slow (4.77 listed at Scout). Again, a year in the weight room and he could wind up as a faster, bigger player ready to pound folks deep across the middle as a strong safety or -- if he adds some serious mass -- could be patrolling the flats as a weakside linebacker.

It's the Pack's fourth commitment this week during State's football camps. Green joins Torian Box, Tony Creecy and today's earlier announcement, Thomas Teal as prospects to offer up verbal commitments to O'Brien, bringing the total for the 2010 class to eight.

Here's some video of Green in action:

View the complete entry of "... And Another Football Commitment!"

Gov' Bev Appoints Two To State's Board Of Trustees


WRAL.com link
Perdue appointed Randall C. “Randy” Ramsey of Beaufort, the founder, president and chief executive of Jarrett Bay Yacht Sales, and reappointed Norris Tolson, the chief executive of the North Carolina Biotechnology Center, to the university's Board of Trustees.

Ramsey serves as vice president of the N.C. State Student Aid Association, also known as the Wolfpack Club, and is a current member of the N.C. State Alumni Association, the State Club and the N.C. State Council on Athletics.


Tolson was initially appointed to the board last month to complete the term of former Chairman McQueen Campbell, who resigned amid questions over his role in N.C. State's 2005 hiring of Mary Easley, the wife of former Gov. Mike Easley.

Tolson earned a bachelor’s degree in crop science and agribusiness from N.C. State and has served as state commerce, transportation and revenue secretary and in the General Assembly.

On the surface, the appointment of the vice president of the Wolfpack Club should bode well for those of us with a heavy interest in the health of the athletics department at State. I'll admit my ignorance of Ramsey as a person and his opinions on the matter of State sports. Is he a status quo guy versus someone looking to make changes? I don't know at this point; perhaps someone reading who knows Ramsey and can vouch for him can offer up a more educated opinion.

But given all the sourness surrounding State's association with folks in the governor's office of late, I'm not too high on any of the appointments that come from the governor. The backroom dealings of McQueen and Easley will probably ensure my continued skepticism of gubernatorial appointees -- and the BOT in general -- for some time to come.

View the complete entry of "Gov' Bev Appoints Two To State's Board Of Trustees"

State Football Adds Another Commit


Defensive tackle prospect Thomas Teal, from Bennettsville, SC

There's not much on Teal at the moment. Scout has him listed as a one-star prospect, but that typically means they haven't had a chance to evaluate him.

He's 6'1" and a stout 330 lbs., a perfect size for an incoming DT. After a redshirt freshman season of weights and structured diet, he'll probably shed a few pounds (down to somewhere in the 310 range, I'd guess) but gain a ton of strength and speed.

Here's some of what the folks at ESPN had to say about him (graded him at a 78, by the way):
Teal is an interesting prospect. He is a big boy who carries a large amount of bulk for his build. On film though he seems to carry his weight well for a kid well over three-hundred pounds. He plays guard on offense and is a solid prospect there, but will likely fit better on defense in college. What initial[sic] jumps out at you about this kid is that for his size he moves pretty darn well. He can get off the ball well and flashes some good quickness at times and you would like to see that be a little more of a consistent thing. With his size he can take on a blocker and hold his ground. He does at times need to watch his pad level.

Sounds to me like a kid with plenty of raw physical talent that has some coaching to do. If O'Brien offered and landed him, I'd be willing to bet he's a coachable kid that will develop nicely in the future.

View the complete entry of "State Football Adds Another Commit"

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

We Have Sod, Ladies And Gents



Some interesting tidbits from the story by Tim Peeler:
In all, some 240 rolls of sod will be used to cover the 68,400 square feet of Wayne Day Field. The field will also have a synthetic buffer around the playing surface, 10 feet away from the wall surrounding the field on the sidelines and five feet away from the wall everywhere else.

The project was originally budgeted for $1 million, but through due digilence and cost-cutting measures, will cost about $750,000.
Nice! Saving a cool quarter-mil these days is huge.
Another part of the project was to replace the in-ground sprinkler system that kept the old field watered with six high-pressure water guns that can be aimed from the sidelines and corners of the end zone to water the field. The guns shoot water up to 200 feet each at a rate of 250 gallons per minute.

“The biggest headache we had every week before a game was making sure none of those sprinkler heads were sticking up or sunk down or tilted in any way so that no one could catch a cleat on them as they ran down the field,” [Ray] Brincefield said. “Now, we don’t have to worry about that.”
Scary to think that one of our players (or one from the opposition) could've suffered a Mickey Mantle-type injury that could've potentially ended their football career.

View the complete entry of "We Have Sod, Ladies And Gents"

Monday, June 22, 2009

Stuff From The Weekend


-- Mike Glennon says he's sticking with the Pack no matter what. His brother's travails at Virginia Tech have no doubt impacted his decision to stay pat with a coaching staff he's comfortable with.

-- Sticking with football, one of the state's top prospects at WR/RB, Tony Creecy of Southern Durham High, committed to Tom O'Brien and the Pack while partaking of O'Brien's camp over the weekend (3-star per Scout, 4-star per Rivals, ESPN gives him a 77 grade). Creecy had an impressive offer list: LSU, Tennessee, Virginia Tech, Florida State, Oregon and a host of many others. Creecy is a tremendous athlete with great speed and strength. He's somewhat short for a wide receiver at 5'11", but he may be suited to play some out of the slot or play a dual-threat role lined up in the backfield. Bottom line, he's a playmaker that's talented enough to give coaches a reason to find space for him on the field.

The best part? Creecy says he made the decision when he did in hopes to sway some other kids at camp to commit. This is shaping up to be a great year for in-state recruiting for the Pack in a year where North Carolina has good talent depth in the high school ranks.

-- The Pack also landed another football committment over the weekend, this time an offensive lineman. Torian Box, a 6'3", 295-lb. prospect out of Georgia committed on Saturday relatively quietly. There's not much of a book on Box at the moment. He's certainly athletic, playing basketball in addition to football, averaging 13 and nine a game. Box had offers from Mississippi State, UAB and East Carolina, but now that the Pack has offered and landed him, I wouldn't be shocked to see a big-time school take a second look at him. O'Brien and his staff have a knack for identifying talent -- particularly on the offensive line -- early. O'Brien may have to fend off late suitors leading up to signing day much like the Jarvis Byrd situation last year.

-- ESPN blogger Heather Dinich is up to her usual head-scratching ways. She's in the midst of doing a countdown of the league's 30 best players and State's Nate Irving made the list...just way lower than you might expect. Currently on her 11th selection during the countdown process, she's got him at 19th behind fellow linebackers Dekoda Watson (#18), Bruce Carter (#14), Quan Sturdivant (#12) and Sean Spence (#11).

With all due respect Heather, please, Watson? Carter? Sturdivant? Spence? Given the choice of a healthy Irving versus any one of these four, I take Irving any day of the week and twice on Saturday. Sheesh. She admittedly ranked Irving lower due to his injury issues, which makes about as much sense as most of her nonsensical arguments. Aren't we assuming that everyone on this list is ranked according to their potential? If Irving plays the way he did last season for a full year, does he suddenly become 5-10 spots better just by virtue of more minutes logged? I know she's not afraid to go out on a limb without much supporting evidence (i.e. the "pretty trees" argument for Kenan Stadium last year), but good grief, this is atrocious (and par for the course for Dinich).

It'll be interesting to see how the rest of her list shapes up; she's essentially slotted Nate the fifth-best LB in the league at this point, and if anymore LBs pop up in the top 10 she's arguing he's sixth or worst. That's just crazy talk.

View the complete entry of "Stuff From The Weekend"

Sunday, June 21, 2009

OMGWTF! Zac Efron In A Wolfpack T-shirt! LAWLS!


If you're over the age of 18 you probably have no idea who the hell Zac Efron is, although if you're a parent with pre-teen children you probably have heard him blaring through your kids' speakers ad nauseum as part of the quizzically popular "High School Musical" franchise and neven known his name.

For the purposes of this post, just assume that Zac is known the world over and worth more than everyone in your neighborhood combined x 100.

Which makes it somewhat puzzling and unusual as to why he -- not to my knowledge in any way associated with N.C State -- showed up at the V-Fest 2009 in Montreal last week wearing a vintage Tuffie State shirt alongside his girlfriend Vanessa Hudgens:

A part of me likes to think that Zac is a big fan of Triangle college basketball and -- in an effort to go against the grain -- decided to become a fan of the Pack instead of either of the two blue bellies up the road.

Probably, though, he just found it in a Goodwill t-shirt bin somewhere.

[Zac groupie]"Nice shirt Zac! The Wolfpack? Who are they?"
[Zac]"I don't know...just found the shirt somewhere for a dollar."
[Zac groupie]"Awesome!"
[Zac]"Get out of my face."
[Zac groupie]"Awesome!"

Thanks for wearing it anyway, Zac. We'll take whatever promotion we can get. And hey, it could be worse:

View the complete entry of "OMGWTF! Zac Efron In A Wolfpack T-shirt! LAWLS!"

Thursday, June 18, 2009

It's Official: State Vs. UT in 2012


Well, I guess we finally nailed down a date with the Volunteers.

After a few false starts trying to get Tennessee on the schedule, the news that State would play UT to open the 2012 season in Atlanta was made official today.

Counting the 2009 opener, we're four full years away from taking the field against the Vols, so there's no telling what either team will look like by that time. If Lane Kiffin can't back up the tremendous volume of trash talk and recruiting missteps he's already made in just a few months since taking the job, there's a good chance State could be facing a Tennessee team coached by someone new. And yes, there's a chance State could have a new coach on the sidelines, as well (fingers crossed that the current arc O'Brien's on extends well out beyond 2012).

Not to mention that the players that will decide this game haven't even completed high school or even junior high.

But it sure looks nice having State in a premier game against a premier opponent smack dab in the middle of some prime recruiting territory on big-time national TV. Let's hope both teams get there with a lot at stake (i.e. BCS implications).

View the complete entry of "It's Official: State Vs. UT in 2012"

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

A Pretty Thorough Timeline Of Events In The Easley Debacle


Charlotte Observer link.

The local papers have been digging through the documents released as part of the federal investigation of the Mike Easley/Mary Easley/NCSU nonsense. The above article gives a pretty clear breakdown in layman terms of the events that transpired over the last four years since Mary's hiring in 2005, along with accompanying snippets from some of the released documents.

Kudos to many of you loyal Wolfpackers out there who bombarded the email inboxes of Oblinger, Campbell McQueen, Erskine Bowles and others to voice your displeasure in the whole affair and how it cast a negative light upon the university.
Bowles said at the time he carefully reviewed NCSU's arguments: “I am convinced that the proposed salary fits the job and is fully justified.”

Again, angry e-mails flowed.

One woman addressed officials as “leeches on the backside of humanity” and closed with the request that “the whole lot of you crooks be taken down.” Bowles forwarded it to Oblinger, writing that it was a “nice sample of my in box.”

Oblinger wrote to Bowles that he was “sorry about this.”
The sooner this blight upon our school ends, the better.

View the complete entry of "A Pretty Thorough Timeline Of Events In The Easley Debacle"

Thursday, June 11, 2009

God Speed, Crazy Bojangles Guy


Homeboy plans to hit every Bo's in America. All 400-and-some restaurants.


LOL @ his locations map:

You can follow Mr. Billison's journey on Twitter here.

View the complete entry of "God Speed, Crazy Bojangles Guy"

Indianapolis Star: 'The All-Star Who Got Away'


Great read on Scott Wood leaving the state of Indiana to play here on Tobacco Rd.
"People will come up to me sometimes and ask me why I didn't go to Indiana or Purdue," said Wood, who scored 17 points in Tuesday's All-Stars exhibition victory against the Junior All-Stars at Benton Central. "But I think I made the right decision."

That's what those fans, well-wishers that they are, fear about Wood: that he could be one of those good ones -- really good ones -- who slips through the fingertips of in-state schools and establishes himself as a star.

It wasn't by luck that the sweet-shooting Wood landed at N.C. State. He struck up a friendship with Wolfpack assistant Monte Towe -- who grew up in nearby Converse, Ind., and played on N.C. State's 1974 Final Four team -- when Towe was recruiting Marion's Julius Mays.

When Wood had a lackluster showing in the summer before his junior season, some schools wavered. They wanted to see more. Towe and N.C. State coach Sidney Lowe had seen enough to know Wood was their guy.

View the complete entry of "Indianapolis Star: 'The All-Star Who Got Away'"

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Time Lapse Video Of The New RBC Center HD Video Scoreboard Installation


Courtesy of the folks over at Canesvision HD:

Here's what the final product looks like:

Two sets of screens offset by two video "rings." Not a single piece of traditional static plastic signage (other than the RBC Center sign at the top) to be found...nearly every square foot of it can be illuminated.

View the complete entry of "Time Lapse Video Of The New RBC Center HD Video Scoreboard Installation"

Monday, June 8, 2009

Wow...Boom Goes The Dynamite In The Chancellor's Residence


Chancellor James Oblinger has resigned in the wake of the Mary Easley fiasco.
NCSU Chancellor James L. Oblinger resigned this morning after days of shifting explanations about a deal he cut for former provost Larry Nielsen when Nielsen stepped down last month.

Both men are at the heart over a controversy about how former state first lady Mary Easley gained a job at the university in 2005, then an 88-percent pay hike last year to a $170,000 salary.

Here's Oblinger's official statement released to the media:

I have informed President Bowles that I am resigning as Chancellor of North Carolina State University.

I am doing so because that is what leaders do when the institutions they lead come under distracting and undue public scrutiny. This is particularly true for leaders of public institutions like NC State.

The hiring of Mary Easley and her treatment as a university employee involved no impropriety and no coercion. I am absolutely confident that when this chapter of NC State's history is written, the only conclusion drawn will be that the University and all of its officials acted both correctly and honorably.

My principal regret is that this chapter of history and that conclusion will not be written until sometime in the future.

The only reason I am announcing my resignation is that I am applying to myself the same standards I have asked Mrs. Easley to apply to herself: I am doing it because it is in the best interests of NC State University.

I understand that the University will be making public today the documents that it is providing to the grand jury in connection with the federal investigation. A handful of those documents - all emails - indicate that I was made aware of Mrs. Easley's potential availability as a faculty member by McQueen Campbell in April 2005. I did not recall those communications until reviewing the emails last week. The emails themselves indicate that I referred the issue to the appropriate university officials and they indicate no impropriety in the process in which Mrs. Easley was hired to come to NC State from her previous position at North Carolina Central University at an increase in pay of $1,072.10.

I am thankful to our Board of Trustees which has continued to support me throughout my years as Chancellor, up to and including today. In leaving my position as Chancellor, I wish to thank those who have made my term here a time of great progress for the University. Those people include members of past and current boards of trustees, as well as faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends of this great University - all of whom have worked with me tirelessly for NC State. Together we have accomplished great things - the completion of the $1 billion Achieve capital campaign, $1 billion in public and privately funded construction and renovation, the expansion of Centennial Campus and Centennial Biomedical Campus. All of these accomplishments - and more - have led to the ever-increasing national and international reputation of N.C. State.

I have devoted 23 years of my life in service to N.C. State, "The People's University." I intend to continue to serve the university as I return to the faculty.

I am issuing this as a written statement because of the constraints on my ability to speak publicly because of state employee privacy laws and the confidential nature of the federal grand jury investigation. Suffice it to say that I intend - as I have done all along - to cooperate with that investigation with the full confidence that the ultimate result will exonerate N.C. State and its officials. I will not, however, be issuing or making any further statements until I have fully testified before the grand jury.

Further questions should be addressed to my counsel, Press Millen of the Womble Carlyle law firm.


View the complete entry of "Wow...Boom Goes The Dynamite In The Chancellor's Residence"

In Case You Missed It...


- Adrian Wilson scored some serious cash over the weekend, becoming the league's top-paid safety.
The deal is worth $39 million, with $18.5 million guaranteed.


Wilson has been with the Cardinals longer than any other player on their roster, experiencing some rough years of losing before the team's unexpected run to the Super Bowl last season. Arizona drafted him out of North Carolina State in the third round in 2001. He signed a five-year deal with the team in 2005.

He's started 110 of his 118 games, compiling 651 career tackles, 481 of them solo, along with 63 pass deflections, 10 forced fumbles and seven fumble recoveries. Last season, Wilson had 85 tackles, 2½ sacks and two interceptions.

In the team's four playoff games last season, the had 20 tackles and two forced fumbles.

A fierce pass rusher, he knocked Buffalo quarterback Trent Edwards out of the game with a concussion on the third play of Arizona's 41-17 victory over the Bills last Oct. 5.

"I think in the end," [GM Rod] Graves said, "he'll be recognized as not only one of the best players today, but one of the best players to have played the game."
- Matt Hill landed the Division I 2009 Nicklaus Award, given to the best collegiate golfer at the Division I level.
Sunday, Hill sat with the other three Nicklaus Award winners from Division II and III and NAIA, as well as Nicklaus. They each shared their stories of the greatest shots of their careers.

Hill did not mention the 215-yard 4-iron in the second round of the NCAA Championship, which allowed him to make eagle on the No. 8 hole and propelled him to the top of the leaderboard. Instead, he remembered a tournament back home in Canada in which he beat his older brother Graham, who was three holes up with three to play.

Matt made back-to-back birdies while his brother made a bogey, leaving them tied going into the final hole. Matt hit a shot to 30 feet, while Graham hit his shot to nine feet. Matt curled in the 30-footer, while Graham missed.

“That was pretty big,” Hill told Nicklaus.

Nicklaus asked if Hill if he ever remembers that shot to his brother.

“Yeah, it’s come up a couple of times,” Hill said, laughing.
- Terry Gannon has made his mark in the broadcasting industry through his versatility and willingness to call anything at any time.
“I got into the business because of winning a national championship at N.C. State,” Gannon said while sitting in a tent just off the 14th tee, not far from his broadcast site. “I started as a color analyst in basketball but was not making very much money the first couple of years, so I had to take any job I could, which was the greatest thing that happened to me.

“I did everything from minor league baseball in Charlotte (N.C.) to PM Magazine — remember that show — to the Morning Zoo. I did the sports reports on the Morning Zoo, Jim Valvano’s TV and radio shows.

“I learned the business from all different angles, and it led to a career that has taken me to places that I’d never thought I’d be going, things I never thought I would do.”

View the complete entry of "In Case You Missed It..."

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Great Read On The Wolfpack Golf Program


Courtesy of the Wilmington Star News.

Among some of the tidbits: A recap on some of the recent success had by former Wolfpack golfers on various tours, a condemnation of the N&O for burying the news of Matt Hill's title win on page 6 from golf coach Richard Sykes, Sykes' opinion on Tim Clark's inability to close out a tournament on the Tour and some news on the new Lonnie Poole golf course over at Centennial Campus.


View the complete entry of "Great Read On The Wolfpack Golf Program"

Monday, June 1, 2009

Tom O'Brien Chat Recap From GoPack.com


You can find the RSS feed of today's chat with Tom O'Brien here, or swing by GoPack.com and click on the replay feature on the chat window.

Some highlights:
[Comment From GravisJr]
Coach - how is Javon Walker looking? Do you think he will be able to contribute this coming season?
Coach O'Brien: Javon is still working with the training room staff and hasn't made it onto the field with the strength and conditioning program yet. He's looking at a possible return to the field during camp in August. The only person who looks like he might not be back for the start of camp is Donald Bowens, who may be looking to a September-October return.
Well that sucks. Sure could use both of them at full speed against South Carolina.
[Comment From TOB4President]
What do you consider the thinnest position group on the team?
Coach O'Brien: (I only chose this question because of your great user name!). On offense (and we've already discussed this some), it would be the line. If we had to do a two-deep today, the second team would have three redshirt freshmen and Wayne Crawford, who just moved over from the defensive side of the ball. So lack of experience there is a concern. On defense, we face the same challenges with our secondary. There will be inexperienced people in backup roles that we may have to count on early in the season.
[Comment From Ashewolf]
Do you think halftime pass-outs should be eliminated?
Coach O'Brien: That is is a decision for our university administration to make, however, it's very important to the football team that at kickoff, whether it be the start of the first quarter or the start of the third quarter, that our fans are in their seats ready to cheer the team on. Also, with so many televised games, it doesn't portray an accurate picture of our awesome atmosphere when the stands are only partially full.
No real surprise here that a coach would like to see better attendance prior to kickoff and the third quarter, but it did set up his closing statement:
Coach O'Brien: Thank you all for your excellent questions and sorry we didn't get to all of them. I look forward to seeing you in Carter Finley Stadium (before kickoff!) this fall. And to help make that happen, we're going to have the 'Calling of the Wolves,' 20minutes before kickoff and five minutes before the third quarter kickoff so that everybody is in their seats in time. You're the greatest football fans in the nation and it's an honor to be the coach at NC State University! GO PACK!!!!!
Interesting idea, though I thought they tried this once before with less-than-stellar results. Someone help me remember...was that an O'Cain thing that petered out when Amato arrived, or did Amato institute it and then let it wither on the vine?

View the complete entry of "Tom O'Brien Chat Recap From GoPack.com"

Tom O'Brien Getting All Internetty With You Today At 4:00


GoPack.com is hosting a live chat with Major Tom at 4:00 p.m. today.

Be sure to have your silly questions ready so that he can put you in your place efficiently and without delay.*

*j/k. But not really.

View the complete entry of "Tom O'Brien Getting All Internetty With You Today At 4:00"

Preview Of The State/USC Game At Tomahawknation.com


An interesting breakdown on crucial out-of-conference games for the ACC this year, starting with State's tilt against the Gamecocks.

I like reading third-party previews of State's games because there's no rooting interest one way or the other. The State/South Carolina game figures to go either way--State fans think State will win easily at home; South Carolina fans think there's no way they lose to a team they beat last year 38-0.

So an opportunity to read an outsider's view on the game is a welcome change of pace. This one is pretty solid, with a breakdown of returning starter numbers on both sides of the ball for both teams and other useful tidbits of information.

I do have to raise an objection to their closing sentence, however:
If Carolina can find a running game and limit their turnovers, they can win this game. If no solution can be found for the ground attack, however, this one could get ugly quickly as the Wolfpack's defensive personnel are heavily skewed to playing the pass.
Two things make this assertion a bit suspect: One, Mike Archer's zone scheme gives up a ton of passing yards, and two, our defensive secondary is one of the identified question marks heading into the season.

Nevertheless, a solid writeup and worth your time if you're tired (like I am) of looking for anything worth reading during the dead period between spring and fall sports.

View the complete entry of "Preview Of The State/USC Game At Tomahawknation.com"