October 10, 2011
NC STATE FOOTBALL
JP GIGLIO (N&O)
Rested, healthy Pack expects strong finish
After N.C. State’s 38-24 win over Central Michigan on Saturday, an official from the Belk Bowl congratulated Wolfpack coach Tom O’Brien at the Murphy Center after O’Brien’s post-game news conference.
“I hope you guys get on a streak here,” the Charlotte bowl official said.
O’Brien, whose team improved to 3-3 with the win, didn’t hesitate in his response.
“We will,” the coach said.
That’s what the Wolfpack needs after an injury-plagued start: a second-half surge. With a week off, the Wolfpack gets some time to heal before a trip to Virginia on Oct. 22.
N.C. State got two defensive starters back from the injured list for the win over the Chippewas, but it was still missing three defensive linemen and running back Mustafa Greene.
The Wolfpack needs to get healthy to get back to a bowl, and in the final six games – all against ACC teams – N.C. State needs four wins to return to a bowl game.
“The week off is going to be huge for us,” said defensive tackle Brian Slay, who missed last week’s loss to Georgia Tech. “When we get people back, we’re going to be a dangerous team.”
JP GIGLIO (N&O)
N.C. State must be complete to beat Cavs
WHAT NEEDS WORK
The complete effort. Only one half of good defense is not going to win many games in the second half of the season, with the Wolfpack needing to win four of its final six games to return to a bowl game.
CAULTON TUDOR (N&O)
Wolfpack is still alive – for now
Saturday’s 38-24 win over Central Michigan doesn’t mean N.C. State’s so-so football season to date suddenly has taken flight.
Definitive information on that front probably won’t be known until Nov. 5, when Wolfpack coach Tom O’Brien and his players attempt to push their win streak against UNC to five.
But while the big picture hasn’t come into focus just yet, certain aspects of the Wolfpack’s season did change some Saturday – and not just by the introduction of black uniforms.
For one thing, a 34-27 loss at Wake Forest on Sept. 10 no longer looks so unsightly.
Brett Friedlander (accinsider.com)
FIFTH QUARTER: â€˜Just win, babyâ€™
3. Pack of reinforcements:
N.C. Stateâ€™s injury riddled defense got two more players back Saturday, LB Terrell Manning and DT Brian Slay. Manning made the biggest impact by recording a sack, a forced fumble and an interception, one of five turnovers State forced in a badly needed 38-24 win against Central Michigan.
Matt Carter (TheWolfpacker.com)
Quick hits from NCSU’s win over Central Michigan
Spotted at the game
NC State commitments Josh Sessoms, safety from Southern Nash High in Bailey, N.C., and James Summers, quarterback from Page High in Greensboro, N.C., were both at the game. So too was senior offensive lineman Casey Perry from Hillside High in Durham, N.C.
Top junior quarterback Connor Mitch from Wakefield High in Raleigh was also in attendance. Mitch sports a Wolfpack offer. An unconfirmed visitor was cornerback Marchez Coates from McDonough High in Pomfret, Md. A player with a striking resemblance to the Pittsburgh commitment was spotted before the game, but the recruit was not wearing a name tag.
CMU @ NC State post-mortem
And then, of course, the concerns…
Coaching. We shouldn’t need half a season to figure out how to play ball. And we shouldn’t have to play the first half of a game against CMU to figure out how to effectively defend them. It’s called summer workouts and game film. Use them. Develop game plans. Go kick someone in the teeth from the first kickoff on Labor Day weekend. Have some FIRE!!!! The next time I watch TOB actually coach a player in the middle of the game will be the first time… I saw him pluck grass more often yesterday (once) that I saw him coach a player (zero).
Akula Wolf (BackingthePack.com)
NC State 38, Central Michigan 24
That first half was about what we’ve come to expect from this team, except this time the offense decided to show up early. While Ryan Radcliff was getting whatever he wanted, Mike Glennon led a pair of touchdown drives in the first quarter, which was a sight for sore eyes, to say the least. His third touchdown pass and a late fumble recovery by Earl Wolff ensured the Pack would have the lead at intermission despite allowing Central Michigan to rack up over 250 yards of offense.
I don’t know if they made adjustments or just improved their execution, but State played significantly better defense in the second half and finally got Radcliff to look like the error-prone quarterback he is. A dreadful decision under pressure ended with the ball in Terrell Manning’s hands and the Wolfpack offense in great shape for its first score of the 3rd quarter. Takeaways like that one, and the strong play by the defense in general, gave us an opportunity to remove all doubt before the start of the 4th quarter. State’s first three drives of the second half began in CMU territory but they only managed points on one of them.
Akula Wolf (BackingthePack.com)
Andy Schmedsall Nixes UConn-To-ACC Proposal