Quarterbacks take center stage for State-Carolina

“The freshman has gone from unproven to unflappable”

NC State: With all of the focus on quarterbacks we are proud to link this entry that highlights a couple of articles that can’t help by make Wolfpackers burst with pride about Russell Wilson.

UNC-CH Butch Davis (supposedly) opened up the competition for quarterback this week between Cameron Sexton and TJ Yates. Caulton Tudor thinks that Chief Butch should start Cameron Sexton; I think Davis has planned to start Sexton all along but chose to position the job as open for a few small and relatively inconsequential reasons.

This is not 2009. It’s 2008. That’s why North Carolina coach Butch Davis should start Cameron Sexton at quarterback when the Tar Heels face N.C. State on Saturday at noon in Chapel Hill.

Whether Sexton is the best quarterback in the program isn’t really the issue at this point. His primary rival and early-season starter T.J. Yates may be the more complete player and the logical choice to direct what will be an ACC title contender in ’09.

I think Davis tipped his hand last weekend when he proclaimed Sexton the starter and then back-tracked on Monday. If nothing else, it would have appeared as bad form and a potential disincentive for kids in the program for it to appear so obvious that Yates lost his job because he got injured. Call it what you want – that is what has happened.

We are talking about Carolina here. Home of style over substance. How would it have played during the recruiting trail’s home stretch if it appeared that a kid could play well for a year and sacrifice for the program only to get shoved aside and lose his job to any injury because he was taking a beating on the field? Was there really any harm for Butch Davis or his team to pretend that Yates has a legitimate shot at starting this Saturday and provide him a few extra reps in practice in case he is needed?

I may be proven completely wrong…but, I don’t think there is really any drama in this ‘decision’. I also don’t think it makes one ounce of difference to NC State since Carolina’s offense doesn’t change much regardless of who is under center.

Parting Shot: If you have some more time to invest, then the first 8 minutes in the video below is a very good conversation of the current and future quarterback situations at State and Carolina.

Tom Suiter: “All of a sudden, State’s a good football team”

Jeff Gravely: “Because they are healthy”

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16 Responses to Quarterbacks take center stage for State-Carolina

  1. Daily Update 11/21/2008 at 7:04 AM #

    Does it really matter between Yates and Sexton? They are both good and have a higher efficiency rating than Russell Wilson IIRC. I am really looking forward to going to this game tomorrow.

    It sounds like UNC is in the process of finalizing a pay raise for Butch, so it would be very satisfying to beat UNC in Chapel Hill the same weekend this gets announced.

  2. Alpha Wolf 11/21/2008 at 8:27 AM #

    The key to this game is not so much the UNC quarterback but NC State’s ability to control the clock and to put points on the board every time it has the chance. That and limiting turnovers.

    Carolina has Nicks and other receivers that can make our secondary pay — and despite their good games the past couple of weeks, this is still a relatively weak unit. Keeping UNC’s O off of the field, and keeping our D rested until late coupled with not giving Carolina possessions on the wrong side of the field will keep the game close and I like us if the game is close in the last ten minutes.

  3. WilmingtonWolf05 11/21/2008 at 9:16 AM #

    I don’t know how to add pictures, but the banner in between the share this article and the comments section is a “North Carolina Ringtones” banner…. Not sure how that happened.

    Oh well, GO WOLFPACK!

  4. packpowerfan 11/21/2008 at 10:05 AM #

    I thought R-Dub leads the ACC in efficiency rating? Also, did TOB CHUCKLE at then end of that video?! ERRONEOUS!

  5. packpowerfan 11/21/2008 at 10:18 AM #

    IMHO, Tom Suiter has always tried to give State a fair shake, even when we have been at our lowest points. I’ve always been impressed with how WRAL has represented the area sports, still, as the “Big Four” and not just “UNX, Duke and these two other schools”.

  6. PacknSack 11/21/2008 at 10:26 AM #

    Carolina is similar to Wake in that the defensive turnovers mask its limitations on offense. Carolina scores points off short fields, but tends to shoot itself in the foot at some point. It’s going to be a cold day, so I think the winner of the turnover battle wins.

  7. choppack1 11/21/2008 at 10:31 AM #

    Alpha – One thing to keep in mind is the value of AMC and Nate Irving to our defense. AMC gets a great push on the pass rush – and Nate Irving can both rush the passer effectively and is an effective pass defender as well.

    I still worry about Nicks and the rest of their receiving corpe too, but this isn’t the same D that BC and South Florida had field days against.

    Regarding UNC’s QBs – Sexton doesn’t have the arm that Yates – and I don’t think he’s as good a decision maker. Sexton reminds me a little of Evans in that he seems to have a “panic” gene. He is, however, much more athletically gifted than Evans.

    One thing we do have working against us – Miami’s loss last night probably gave the Heels some more life (and no doubt PO’d our next opponent.)

    GaTech has clinched a share of their division’s title, but I don’t think they can win it unless VaTech loses out, UVa loses another and UNC loses another.

    VaTech is now the team in this division that is in control of their own destiny. Actually, UVA may be too – but I’m not sure.

    UMd of course controls their destiny in our division. A couple of breaks here or there, and we could still be alive for the hunt in our division.

  8. tcthdi-tgsf-twhwtnc 11/21/2008 at 10:34 AM #

    WRAL Sports remains a true pleasure in the Salton Sea that is modern-day journalism.

  9. Daily Update 11/21/2008 at 10:48 AM #

    Neither Sexton or Yates have played 75% of their games, so they aren’t in the official pass efficiency ratings. Combined they are over 140 IIRC.

  10. choppack1 11/21/2008 at 11:21 AM #

    They should still have a rating – but DU – you’re right, that’s how they do the rating for the NCAAs – you have to play in 75% of the games to be considered.

  11. wufpaxno1 11/21/2008 at 12:28 PM #

    Passer Ratings? …Passer Ratings? …Don’t talk to me about Passer Ratings! …I just hope we win the game! Passer ratings don’t matter nearly as much as the intangibles, and at this point, no quarterback in the ACC does more for his team then Russell Wilson. Russell does things, athletically and intelligently, that Yates or Sexton can only dream about. Russell has an awareness and pocket presence that not even Phillip Rivers possessed. Now I did not say that Russell was a better quarterback then Phillip Rivers, just that his sense of what is happening around him is uncanny.

  12. Packman02 11/21/2008 at 12:30 PM #

    Longtime lurker, first time poster…on topic but different subject…here goes…

    The much discussed, and quite obvious, keys to a State offensive meltdown revolve around RW and the unc D forcing him into bad decisions, turnovers, etc. I’ve seen enough of Russell’s play this season to have quite a bit of faith that this is not going to be an issue.

    I was wondering what everyone else thought about the kicking game (our returns v. their coverage). I am not sure how good or bad the Heels are in this facet of the game and I know that we have some real burners in this department – perhaps someone can enlighten me?

  13. robopack 11/21/2008 at 3:35 PM #

    ^ The part of the kicking game that should worry us is punting. Getting off punts has scared me at times this year. Though our kick returns probably worry them..Kick off returns for sure..

  14. packpowerfan 11/21/2008 at 6:10 PM #

    Along with the Pack I support the Panthers in professional football…I cringe as soon as the long-snapper lets loose.

  15. PackerInRussia 11/22/2008 at 12:27 AM #

    I cringed every time they punted last week. It seemed like they came close to blocking on several. Maybe they’re trying to lure the other team into roughing the kicker. Whatever it is, Wake had it figured out and were able to get too close for comfort.

  16. wufpup76 11/22/2008 at 1:03 AM #

    On the efficiency rating topic, RW’s would certainly be higher if our receivers didn’t drop every 1 in 5 or so (still have faith in you, guys) … let’s hope if we have any drops in this game it’s more like 1 in 10 tomorrow (or later today, I guess)

    Whatever the ratings are, it’s undeniable that there’s something special about this kid on the field … and off it, too

    I would trade him for no one

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