* NC State took the field against a good, versatile QB and an excellent, athletic defense (justifiably a Top 15-20 caliber team, unlike ECU) without one single above-average player on either side of the ball. We could play USF 100 times, and we’d lose at least 99.
* USF clearly watched film of last week’s second half. They attacked the areas where Nate Irving would have been early and repeatedly – to incredibly good results (3 TDs on first 3 drives, rarely even getting to 3rd down). They are well-coached, and it showed.
* Harrison Beck underthrew several deep balls in the first half, with WRs breaking wide open. When he doesn’t hit passes like that, our offense wouldn’t threaten a good D-III defensive unit.
* We are damned lucky Russell Wilson couldn’t play today (or that TOB was smart enough to hold him out). The Bulls’ defensive line is sick, and they beat the shit out of Harrison Beck. Fortunately, Beck brings lots of extra padding to the field. In all seriousness, Beck deserves our kudos for hanging in there the whole game and not playing scared. This is not to be confused with playing well – but he took one for the team.
* I don’t know what it is with NC State and waiting for the snap. Against Clemson, we seemingly jumped offsides every other play. Tonight, it was the offense’s turn for repeated false starts.
* As an NC State fan, you are playing with house money this year. Savor every win, and every good effort you get from this ragtag bunch, and quit expecting a baseline of respectability based on those brief shining monents. This is an absolutely awful football team (no depth, scant athleticism, player attrition, 2+ years of terrible recruiting by Amato), and your average coach would win no more than 1 or 2 games with this roster. You can expect respectability and 2009, and real Tom O’Brien teams in 2010 and 2011. Remember, O’Brien’s first real recruiting class is in its true freshman year.
* Our students are pretty awesome. The harder it rained, the louder they got, despite no realistic hope for winning (or even competing in) the game. At least half of them stayed at least until halftime, while over 80% of the rest of the fans hightailed it to their cars early in the second quarter.
* I drove home barefoot (yes, I stayed almost to the end of the third quarter – maybe 4,000 non-Vaughn Towers fans remained). It was the best decision I made all night.