“The Pack is Back”

I wanted to thank WRAL-TV’s Blog for the great NC State coverage over the last few days and take a moment to highlight and some recent items. Before I get too far into the entry, I would be making a big mistake if I did not send your attention to this great entry setting up Saturday’s key game with the Demon Deacons. The Wolfpack is in a position to contend for the ACC Atlantic Division Championship and Saturday’s game is too important to ignore in this entry.

Trestman Coming Into His Own
I will start with David Glenn’s blog entry focusing on Offensive Coordinator, Marc Trestman. Trestman is in the middle of his second year with the Wolfpack and seems to be adjusting to calling a college game.

The Wolfpack’s second-year offensive coordinator had against the Seminoles a coach’s equivalent of a 300-yard passing game, or a 150-yard rushing effort. And Trestman did it against FSU’s Mickey Andrews, one of the best defensive coordinators in the nation.

On Thursday night, Trestman earned his stripes for NCSU, which rushed for 150 yards (on 37 carries) and passed for 190 (13-20, no interceptions, three touchdowns) against the Seminoles. It proved to be the perfect recipe for success.

What do good coordinators do on game day? They know their own personnel and tendencies extremely well, they know their opponent’s personnel and tendencies pretty well, and they make decisions based on those facts that are designed to put their players in the best possible positions to succeed. Against FSU, that’s exactly what Trestman did all night long.

To be fair, Trestman’s statistical performance to this point in his career leaves A LOT to be desired. NC State has scored more than 24 points only once in Trestman’s tenure…and that was against Eastern Kentucky. Through five games this season, the Wolfpack ranks only 90th in the country in scoring offense with 19.6 points per game.

But as Dave Glenn pointed out, it seems that Trestman is hitting his stride and becoming more comfortable with his rhythm and style. It is no coincidence that this improved perception of Trestman corresponds with the switch to Daniel Evans as starting quarterback. Evans passing ability and decision making obviously create significant lattitude in Trestman’s mind. This is manifested in play calling and offensive versatility that makes Trestman feel much more comfortable and confident in what he can call for the offense and what the offense can execute on the field.

Bob Holliday – Inside the NC State Turnaround
Bob Holliday lauds NC State’s win over Florida State in this blog entry.

Not only did N.C. State defeat Florida State, it played with a flair. The Wolfpack braintrust kept the Seminoles off-balance with a mix of running plays-wide, straight ahead, and even a couple of reverses. State also threw the ball 22 times-mostly downfield. Although the statistics were dead even, and Florida State certainly had its chances to win, credit should go to the N.C. State players and coaching staff. The Wolfpack out-thought and out-fought Florida State.

Tom Suiter – “The Pack is Back”
In this entry, Tom Suiter chronicles his personal observations of the NC State football program’s transformation over the last two weeks. Lots of good stuff in this.

It’s easy to criticize Amato because he puts himself out there. He once said that he knew his personality wasn’t for everybody and he added “You know what? I don’t care.”

That’s Chuck Amato. That’s why a lot of State fans love him, and that’s why others don’t. But the emotional coach, the flamboyant often-combative coach, is a fighter who believes in himself and who believes in his team and who loves N.C. State. He has to be given a lot of credit for turning around what could have been a disaster and that thump you hear are people jumping back on the red and white band wagon.

The Pack is back and Amato has held it together. It’s not easy to be a coach. Your fans love you one game and want to have you fired the next. Amato has made State fans think big and what’s wrong with that? Nobody ever gets to the top without thinking that they can.

'06 Football Chuck Amato General

36 Responses to “The Pack is Back”

  1. Trout 10/13/2006 at 10:28 AM #

    Good stuff. I know SFN will cover this too, but Glenn’s blog entry today on Hickson is outstanding as well.

  2. BJD95 10/13/2006 at 10:31 AM #

    Glenn also has a nice entry about J.J. Hickson at that link. If I had to point to one person in the media as someone who really thinks like us (meaning the SFN bloggers), it would be Dave Glenn. Don’t always agree with EVERY opinion, of course, but do agree with him often, and almost always with his method of analysis.

  3. choppack1 10/13/2006 at 10:36 AM #

    Glenn gets slammed a lot by Pack fans – and some of it is justified. However, he remains, IMHO, the best overall ACC analyst in the country – and by a long-shot. He knows recruits, and the Sports Journal does a lot of interesting stuff regarding recruiting, ratings and development. Quite frankly, we’re lucky he’s here and has a radio that we can pick up.

    He’s an expert in his field – and he and Mel Kiper, Jr are my favorite guys to listen to when they talk about their respective fields of expertise. Do I think sometimes he crosses the line into “fandom” too often when it comes to UNC – Yes. Would I trust him to conduct an investigation that would result in serious problems for a successful Tar Heel football or basketball coach? Probably not.

    However, when it comes to breaking down the facts in the ACC – he’s probably the best around.

  4. BJD95 10/13/2006 at 10:41 AM #

    ^ Good analogy to Kiper. I like the way he thinks, too. Those are the 2 guys I will sit in my car (after arriving at my destination) so that I can finish hearing what they have to say. Did that with Kiper this morning.

  5. RAWFS 10/13/2006 at 10:56 AM #

    I will have a LOT more belief in the NC State offensive scheme and Marc Trestman when they score more than 24 points. Only once or twice since Trestman arrived has that happened and there is going to be a game where 35 points or so is needed. Don’t be fooled, this defense can still be scored upon. Hopefully, we do not find this out tommorow afternoon.

  6. choppack1 10/13/2006 at 11:05 AM #

    BJD 95 – It’s been a while since I heard Kiper. I miss hearing him. Unfortunately, there’s very few times when I listen to sports guys on the radio that I feel like they know more than I do about sports that I follow closely- I don’t feel that way w/ Kiper or Glenn.

    RAWFS – I hear ya – but I think 24 points against FSU is very impressive. (Especially when you consider we got to the one yard line and got 0.) I’m hoping that last Thursday was a “watershed” game for the offense. I also feel about our mediocre offensive performance against BC after watching them totally shut down VaTech. Hopefully, we’re ready for a real break out game where we put up 35-40 points. Unfortunately, the Wake D may be as good as any we have played.

  7. old13 10/13/2006 at 11:14 AM #

    It is my opinion that until the emergence of DE, MT has NEVER had the complete playbook at his disposal. DE provides that lattitude, which means that a full balance of play choices is now available to MT. Play action and other misdirection plays obviously work as intended only if the threat of what is faked is real – or, as in poker, one cannot effectively bluff unless one has actually held cards at some time. MT wasn’t an NFL OC for 20 years for nothing – ineffective OCs don’t stay in the league very long. So I don’t think that MT has necessarily turned a page so much as the entire WOLFPACK ooffense has. In any case, hopefully success breeds success in years to come.

  8. Dan 10/13/2006 at 11:17 AM #

    “Don’t be fooled, this defense can still be scored upon. ”

    Our OLB’s in pass coverage are very beatable. Jeff Bowden is an idiot to have abandoned Booker in the passing game. All they did is challenge Tank and AJ Davis all night. The way to challenge our defense is to go after the OLB’s by sending WR’s deep and screening wide to the RB’s.

    I just hope the kids out there develop before an ACC takes full advantage of it.

  9. oldflyingfarmer 10/13/2006 at 11:33 AM #

    Just glad I can feel positive again.
    GO PACK!!

  10. class of 74 10/13/2006 at 11:39 AM #

    We are still building as far as this years team is concerned. But with Evans emergence, the whole team is looking better and feeling more confident or so it would seem. Before the season I thought we’d be lucky to be .500, now we have a chance to contend for a spot in Jacksonville. Long way to go still, but we can build one step closer with a win here saturday. Should be a good game regardless, except for the SF traffic.

  11. GoldenChain 10/13/2006 at 11:44 AM #

    I concur, there is definitely a chemical change, comparing the team of the first 3 games to the current one is like comparing Temple to tOSU.

  12. Mr O 10/13/2006 at 11:48 AM #

    Choppack: The ACC SJ was the only publication to print the Phil Ford’s Wife/McInnis story. They didn’t say exactly what happened, but they did cover it in a way that their readers could figure it out. Wasn’t Dean Smith the coach at that time?

    For the most part, there hasn’t been anything at UNC that has needed investigation. Rarely are things that need to be investigated with “successful coaches”.

  13. Packaholic1 10/13/2006 at 11:53 AM #

    “Coach [Bobby] Bowden called me and he got to talking about the crowd. He said ‘Chuck, we’ve been to Gainesville, we’ve been to the University of Miami at the Orange Bowl, we’ve been down to LSU, we’ve been to Auburn and Nebraska, but our people said it was the loudest stadium we’ve ever been in.’�

    Let’s see how we can turn this to a negative.

  14. 94wolfpack 10/13/2006 at 11:56 AM #

    RAWFS says: “I will have a LOT more belief in the NC State offensive scheme and Marc Trestman when they score more than 24 points. Only once or twice since Trestman arrived has that happened and there is going to be a game where 35 points or so is needed.”

    I will tend to cut Trestman some slack. He has had – up until this point – a one dimensional offense out of necessity ( and the abilities of the previous two QBs (though I thought Davis was better than Stone ) has been well chronicled.) Giving defenses fits starts with offensive balance. When you can provide a balanced attack on offense, the defense has to atleast respect the passing and the running game which will leave defenses guessing.

    I will have MUCH more faith in him if he can consistently get to 3rd and short rather than 3rd and long. The total points doesn’t bother me all that much because every game is different. I think you will see the scoring opportunities increase as the season progresses. The only scoring totals that matter to me are the ones at the end of the game and as long as State’s points are > than the opponents points then i don’t care if its 2-0.

  15. BJD95 10/13/2006 at 11:57 AM #

    As I noted in the comments before, Trestman’s positive impact really struck me as I watched the game. It was very close to a perfect offensive gameplan, IMHO.

  16. packbackr04 10/13/2006 at 12:03 PM #

    Packaholic^ do you have a link to this

    Coach [Bobby] Bowden called me and he got to talking about the crowd. He said ‘Chuck, we’ve been to Gainesville, we’ve been to the University of Miami at the Orange Bowl, we’ve been down to LSU, we’ve been to Auburn and Nebraska, but our people said it was the loudest stadium we’ve ever been in.’�

    a school full of engineers ought to be able to build another friggin taj mahal. BUt that doesnt take away from the fact that it was sooo loud in there last thursday against FSU. I thought my ear drums would burst. Which takes me off topic slightly to the fact that the Valvano Center.. oh sorry the RBC Center desperatly needs the noise meter like the reynolds of old!!!!!! GO WOlfpack!

  17. Dan 10/13/2006 at 12:20 PM #

    “I will have MUCH more faith in him if he can consistently get to 3rd and short rather than 3rd and long.”

    Dude. That is the goal of every team in America. Somewhere in there we get into the gray area of coaching vs. execution. When you have Andre Brown back there, you’d think your O-line would be good enough to get you to at least 3rd and 4 with two running plays not that that is what I , nor anyone else, should be asking for in all running the ball.

    Our biggest problem this year hasnt been play calling. Its been the O-line getting a push. That happened in the 2nd half against FSU. If that keeps happening, you’ll see the 3rd and shorts you ask for.

    I totally agree with what you are saying. I’m just not competely sure if you can blame the play calling for what we’ve seen as regards the 3rd and longs.

  18. packbackr04 10/13/2006 at 2:34 PM #

    sorry, it says the page requested was not found and puts me on the site map?

  19. RAWFS 10/13/2006 at 3:12 PM #

    About the only negative thing I can come up with today is that NCSU is dead last in the ACC in terms of athletics revenue. With the FB, MBB, WBB and BB team in the post-season, I really wonder how that this can be.

    But that’s really reaching.

  20. CaptainCraptacular 10/13/2006 at 3:19 PM #

    RAWFS, I looked at the Orlando Sentinel (my local paper) article about that revenue. From the looks of things, we are in the bottom 5% of athletics revenue earned amongst members of the Big BCS conferences. I know money doesn’t drive results, but with the athletics department being handicapped by having 1/2 the budget of larger schools make it seem amazing what has been accomplished in Raleigh.

    I wonder how much licensing fees from merchandise sales account in the overall revenue totals.

  21. RAWFS 10/13/2006 at 3:42 PM #

    My thoughts exactly, Captain. I think that we’re down low in the licensing revenue stream, and part of it (purely opinion here) is that NC State is not a well marketed brand.

    Part of that is due to athletic performance (no FF in 23 years, no BCS bowls ever) but then again, anyone involved in maketing knows that impressions especially in youth are critical for brand-building.

    I won’t go on much about this, because that would hijack this thread, but I will say that I would like to see this matter looked into and fully addressed.

  22. RAWFS 10/13/2006 at 3:44 PM #

    ^ Meant to add in that “brand awareness” helps recruit athletes. If you see UNC stuff all your life, have a positive view of them due to that, and then they come calling on you as a potential recruit, you’re naturally going to give them your ear. State needs to have that sort of impression embedding, yet they cannot even get new towels on the seats in CFS.

  23. choppack1 10/13/2006 at 4:21 PM #

    RAWFS – we’re heading down a tangent here – but w/ UNC-Ch – what came first, the chicken or the egg?

    Interestingly enough, we were one of Nike’s highest profile clients during the V years. I think UNC and Duke have been able to market their brand better because, quite frankly, it has been more marketable.

    We’ve been lucky – in the last 2 weeks, we’ve gotten some great pub from ESPN on the football front – and 3 years ago, we certainly didn’t suffer from a lack of pub. However, we (NC State) didn’t hold up our end of the deal.


  1. The ACC Basketblog - 10/13/2006

    en ligne,,

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