Rated a five-star prospect by Scout.com, Schaeffer has narrowed his list to three schools and will announce at 6:00 EST. NC State, Ole Miss, and Wisconsin are the three finalists for his services. ….Schaeffer has garnered offers from NC State, Ole Miss, Wisconsin, Kansas State, and Virginia Tech among others but recently narrowed his list to the Wolfpack, Rebels, and Badgers.
Schaeffer’s road (and story) has been long and winding ….and is one that we won’t bother to re-hash in excessive detail here. Schaeffer originally signed with the University of Tennessee where he competed for playing time with Eric Ainge at the beginning of his true freshman season. He later transferred to Junior College after failing to win significant playing time and getting into some trouble off the field.
Listed around 6 feet, 3 inches (although he seems shorter than that), Schaeffer is considered a “dual-threat” quarterback that many people believe could be a God-send for the Wolfpack’s struggling offense. Although Marcus Stone compiled a 5-1 record in the stretch drive of the 2005 season, he did so by avoiding game-changing mistakes and allowing State’s fantastic defense to control the scoreboard and field possession.
Looking ahead to next year, the Wolfpack will hae to score significantly more points than Stone was able to muster in the wake of the departure of its top six defensive players. Stone’s poor passing performance and game management is not going to be enough to keep the program’s head above water. Although some positive buzz exists around rising redshirt-sophomore, Daniel Evans, no other quarterback on State’s roster will have ever taken a snap in Division One football.
I HATE putting much reliance on recruiting and recruiting evaluations in the overall assessment of programs. I think recruiting is too often used as a bullshit ‘crutch’ in evaluations of programs by both fans and administrators. But, make no mistake about this — Brent Schaeffer’s potential recruitment to NC State is HUGE for Chuck Amato and the NC State football program.
Every off-season has been difficult for Chuck Amato, and this off-season has been no different. Usually, Amato loses an inordinate amount of assistant coaches that significantly hampers the long term continuity of his program; this season, he has lost an inordinate amount of talented underclassmen all expected to be All-ACC and All-American candidates) that will significantly hamper the short term success of the program.
These are the factors that contribute to the importance of potentially landing Schaeffer. There is no doubt that he would positively impact the program on many key fronts, the most obvious of which would be to (1) immediately improve our struggling offense and (2) signal to the ‘market’ that our program may not have stagnated as much as some believe.
The public relations impact of landing a high profile recruit like Schaeffer, who has three years of eligibility to play two seasons, would mean a lot to the perceived momentum of State’s program and also could open the door for Amato to land some big names as we race to the recruiting finish line. One of State’s most thin (and weakest) positions is along the offensive line; I can’t help but think that the opportunity to block for our stable of running backs and a semi-proven commodity like Brent Schaeffer can only enhance State’s chances of attracting some top O-Line talent.
Please don’t misunderstand me – losing Brent Schaeffer would not be the straw that broke this program’s back. But, landing him would definitely be a catalyst to create some much-needed positive momentum for Chuck Amato and NC State Football.