Birmingham – QB talk & Harrison Beck

I’ve got a lot of random items from the bowl game but will probably get around to the items in a fragmented manner.

We’ve already touched upon NC State’s great fans (Click here)

On Monday night in Birmingham after the loss to Rutgers Monday’s the group I was with ran into a lot of players from both Rutgers and NC State. Two pretty interesting items came out of this:

(1) Mike Teel from Rutgers – spoke with Rutgers quarterback Mike Teel at Dave’s in Five Points. He was very gracious and seemed like a good guy. He approached the topic of the game by immediately commenting on how the Wolfpack’s loss of Russell Wilson obviously changed the complexion of the game. (If only some of the idiot Rutgers fans that we encountered could have been so aware of reality &/or gracious).

Teel went on to praise our defensive line as fantastic. We asked directly who stood out to him and he said #97 is great. (Willie Young) He then went on to say that #56 is fantastic (Nate Irving)…and that #44 (Ray Michel) is a great linebacker. The Michel comment was welcome considering that his performance this season was somewhat inconsistent. Note that Michel got a huge pop on Teel during the game so the impact of that hit surely helped form his view.

Teel added what appeared obvious on the field – he hasn’t been hit like this all year. Said his bell was still ringing from some of those hits. My only surprise was that he didn’t refer to Clem Johnson by name as Johnson had an excellent bowl game.

(2) Harrison Beck – One of the Wolfpack players with whom we spoke on Monday night indicated that “the team wanted to kick Harrison Beck’s ass” because Beck literally smiled and was laughing after throwing his interception. He said that everyone was pissed.


I can’t say that this is necessarily surprising as it was obvious that the entire team lost a lot of energy when Beck came in. Of course ‘losing Russell Wilson’ was a large part of the feelings; but ‘(lack of faith/motivation/interest in rallying around Beck’ may have been an even larger impact as the team seemed to unite with renewed vigor when Daniel Evans took the helm.

Back in September when Russell was hurt and Beck had to play we discussed the obvious rift between Beck and Coach Tom O’Brien. In light of the past problems that exist in this relationship then – if this news is true – I don’t think many Wolfpackers would argue with thanking Mr. Beck for his time and revoking his scholarship for the future. There is no need to have this kind of ‘example of commitment’ creating problems within the program.

Next season’s quarterback position projects to have Russell Wilson’s return, Mike Glennon become eligible and Everett Proctor to redshirt. Starting safety Clem Johnson could always play quarterback in an emergency. Perhaps there could be some value in recruiting a multipurpose JUCO quarterback into the program for ‘insurance’ in 2009/2010? Where is Olin Hannum when you need him?

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33 Responses to Birmingham – QB talk & Harrison Beck

  1. SuperStuff 01/02/2009 at 11:15 AM #

    The changes in offense during spring drills seem obvious now that Russell Wilson ended up being the starter. I think once the coaches saw Everett Proctor at camp they found themselves another QB that would fit into those changes on offense as well.

  2. Alpha Wolf 01/02/2009 at 11:16 AM #

    This is an excellent entry, and thanks for taking the time to share it. This is why we all love SFN so much.

    I could see the deflation on the State bench all the way across the field and 2/3 of the way up the opposite stands. Shoulders slumped, players were walking up and down with their heads down and no one was gathering around Beck to fire him up.

    All I can say I am very pleased that Dan Evans had one more moment of glory when he led the team on our final TD drive of the year. It’s too bad for Dan and for us that he couldn’t do it again, but the truth is that Dan has never been a gunslinger and with less than one minute to go and no timeouts plus an entire football field to cover someone with a great arm would have had to been in there and gotten lucky at that. Evans didn’t get it done, but what the hell, because of him, we took the game under one minute to play.

    Next year, Glennon becomes an option and Beck won’t sniff the field unless Wilson AND Glennon go down. Frankly, I wouldn’t trust Beck to carry the clipboard, because I would be afraid that he’d run over and give it to someone on the other’s team’s secondary.

  3. old13 01/02/2009 at 11:16 AM #

    Most interesting. Sounds like Beck should go the out route. He transferred from Nebraska because he and his mother felt he was treated unfairly there, never even considering that, although he was a 4-* QB coming out of HS, he doesn’t have the abillity to go through his progressions and make good decisions on the field.

    As for Teel, sounds like he is a class act to me.

  4. choppack1 01/02/2009 at 11:35 AM #

    Beck is a flake – he always has been and he always will be. I thought that when he came in for Evans earlier this year against William & Mary – he played great and then showed great maturity in the interview afterwards.

    It’s worth noting that he has had 2 excellent moments at NC State. Last year’s opener vs. UCF and the performance this year vs. William and Mary.

    With Evans you know what’s coming – sort of. Evans will play well until his first INT or fumble, then he’ll lose confidence fairly rapidly. OTOH, with Beck – you just never know – unless he starts a game – then you know you’re going to lose.

    Who knows how Beck had practiced the last few weeks. He may have some issues that keep him from putting together what’s obviously a golden arm, some athletic ability and a fine interview – into a decent decision making QB. He seems to have the attitude of a Tony Romo – w/ less talent and worse decision making ability.

  5. Wolf-n-Atl 01/02/2009 at 11:38 AM #

    I’m not sure how many of you were seated on the side of the stadium behind our team, but in case you weren’t I wanted to tell you how a real team player reacts to adversity. Immediately following Beck’s interception Wilson walked up and down the team patting players on the shoulders and encouraging them. He took it upon himself to try to bolster the confidence of the offense.

    I was hoping for a Daniel Evans come back win similar to the BC game, but it was not to be. I thought he did a great job considering the position he was in.

  6. SEAT.5.F.2 01/02/2009 at 11:46 AM #

    The Beck QB sitiution is sort of tough to read into. He’s just acting like he always has, but why Bible would keep him at #2 over Evans based only on arm strenght is curious.

    What I’m getting at is that Curtis Crouch didn’t deserve on the two deep (staff went further then that), so why should a “Golden Boy” get different treatment. I assume we’ll see Beck at Spring Practice, next fall seems a stretch though.

    Proctor has been thought of as ultimately a S for the next level but I beleive TOB/Bible will give him an honest shot. Unfortunately he won’t be at spring practice so the prospect of him being the #3 is truly scary.

  7. TOBtime 01/02/2009 at 11:48 AM #

    I did not see Teel get sacked as much as I would have liked but it is good to hear his comments coming from someone at his level. The Rutgers O-line was fantastic and we just could not get there in time. However, Teel had some receivers making awesome catches as well. He sounds like a great guy.
    I just can’t see Beck wearing a WolfPack uniform at spring practice. I sincerely hope we DO NOT.

  8. choppack1 01/02/2009 at 12:02 PM #

    Seat 5f2 – I have no idea why Beck was 2nd string instead of Evans other than the fact that this year – Beck outperformed him in the games. Beck performed OK against Clemson, had a gutsy – if ineffective game at USF.

    Evans problem – in addition to not having the arm – has always been handling things when they really start to fall apart – this was evident even in 2006. You know he tries, he studies film and practices hard. But when things break down around him or when he has struggled, he appears to have trouble “forgetting”.

    Beck’s problem has been that at times it seems like he just doesn’t care or just isn’t serious enough. It’s good to have cockiness and confidence – you need it to succeed at sports – but you also have to have a good work ethic if you’re not blessed w/ incredible abilities.

    I don’t think that Beck is a bad kid. Like Evans – I don’t think he had the mental makeup to succeed at this level. Unlike Evans, he did have the physical ability to be a QB at a BCS conference level. That’s what makes his shortcoming more frustrating – but possibly, it’s just as inevitable.

  9. howlie 01/02/2009 at 1:04 PM #

    I’m baffled that someone doesn’t get in Daniel’s ear about one simple aspect of his throws. In this game, he did not ‘plant’ his back foot and push forward off of it…. but threw while ‘falling off’ the back foot while his momentum was carrying him away from the direction of the throw.

    The result is a ‘floater’ that hangs in the air and just asks to be intercepted. He got away with 5-6 throws that way–and as acknowledged above–even got us a drive and touchdown. But I kept waiting for TOB or Bible to TELL Daniel after one of these plays and series to PUSH OFF THE BACK FOOT and get some zip on the passes.

    Instead, the passes ‘floated’ more and more, and instead of ‘following through’ on his passes, he seemed eager to ‘wilt’ away from the rush as soon as he released the ball.

    Maybe he was already sore and beaten up from practice–I don’t know– but I thought, “It’s the LAST GAME OF YOUR LIFE–a BOWL GAME–MAKE the throws and TAKE THE HITS [getting knocked out with courage, if that’s what’s required), but don’t be a pansy back there and throw the game away…”

    Again, I don’t know the situation–and CLEARLY Daniel was MILES ahead of Beck–but it was such a [seemingly] easily correctable error. Even still, I’m grateful for Daniel and appreciative for what he contributed during his career.

  10. LRM 01/02/2009 at 1:07 PM #

    Beck is a perfect example of why I don’t like taking transfers. I never understood why people here were so high on a guy that left Nebraska seemingly because he didn’t want to compete with Sam Keller to be 2006 Big XII Offensive Player of the Year Zac Taylor’s backup.

    Looking back on some of the comments from those days is good stuff. Beck would solidify the QB position and give Burke a run for his money (after, of course, Burke replaced Stone).

    And to think, The Three-Headed Monster of Burke, Beck, and Evans provided us with one of those truly remarkable sports moments that few have witnessed: all three threw interceptions against Clemson in 2007.

  11. Greywolf 01/02/2009 at 2:12 PM #

    Given how our offense was designed, I would think that Clem would run a handful of plays at the end of every practice so he could spell Wilson if RW needed to come out for a series. So what if the D knew he was going to exercise the “run option” they would still have to stop it. Better than Beck and Evans making the obvious hand off to Brown and Eugene.

    And WTF was Eugene starting over Brown all about? That blew my mind.

  12. choppack1 01/02/2009 at 2:42 PM #

    LRM – I think you are painting w/ too broad a brush there. Sean Berton was a pretty good transfer. And so was Drew Whimsett (or whatever the DE’s name from Northwestern was) in addition, Willis Jr. was pretty good for us as well. And if you look at last year, Mauck did pretty well for Cincy.

    I think Beck is the perfect example of why you need to do your homework for transfers. There were lots of red flags w/ this kid – that weren’t there for the others. People forget – he DID play for Nebraska. His stats were pretty much what you saw here. Low completion % and lots of INTs – he probably threw plenty of long balls. He made just enough plays to make you think – maybe he just needs some more reps – but obviously it wasn’t a question of playing time.

    All you need to know about Beck was that he was a highly rated high school QB and he was from Florida. So you know who – thought that he was golden. I may be wrong and it’s just a guess, but I’d be shocked if the current staff would have brought him in.

    With a transfer – you know you are getting kid who didn’t work out at his previous school. This can definitely happen to a good kid who is talented. Maybe you’re too far down the depth charge – maybe the program is moving away from your style of game – maybe the kid is right – and the coaches aren’t giving him a fair shot. But I think he probably falls in the Marques Johnson category of transfers….

  13. wufpaxno1 01/02/2009 at 3:54 PM #

    Howlie- “In this game, he did not ‘plant’ his back foot and push forward off of it” Daniel Evans has had this problem as long as he has been at State. I am pretty sure that the coaches have addressed this issue with him on many occasions before as I am sure has his Dad, and D.E. has probably made the adjustment in practice. But old habits are hard to break and under pressure in a game environment mechanics seem to be the first thing to break down. This may likely be one of the reasons that he was relegated to the practice squad and not the first choice off of the bench. For those of you who may not have been aware of it, Evans has been running the scout team offense since practice started for the bowl game. He has not taken a snap with any of the State offensive units which makes his performance, one pass short as it was, even that much more remarkable.

    Beck is of high athletic ability and little football IQ. In high school it was easy for him to shine on ability alone, but that has not been the case since he has gotten into the college ranks. I think that he gave up long ago and has not taken much of the learning portion of the game seriously. It is my understanding that he drew plays up in the huddle sand lot style in practice. This would explain the friction between him and the coaching staff. His laughing and joking after the interception on Monday is just a defense mechanism and a carryover from his care free attitude. Beck is only here for his degree and his fiancé’, he quit on this team after the BC game last season.

  14. Ismael 01/02/2009 at 3:56 PM #

    watching on TV after that interception, i too thought Beck looked awful(ly) aloof; totally unrepentant. I know in interviews he’s said he doesn’t let it bother him, but this is just unacceptable.

    What it means is that it sounds like he either isn’t learning or refusing to learn.

    Like the comments above about Daniel Evans throwing from his backfoot. You KNOW he’s been coached to NOT do that, but i think in some of these situations bad habits take over. Even the TD pass, if you look at the replay from the end zone looking back towards the QB, he wasn’t even looking when he threw it, he just threw it out there and AntHill was all alone. He got hit on the play, but, that same type of play led to sooo many agonizing INT’s we’ve seen. However, I’m glad/sad we won’t have him around to beat up on anymore

  15. Elrod 01/02/2009 at 3:57 PM #

    If Beck shows up for spring practice, who is going to order the Code Red?

  16. Noah 01/02/2009 at 4:08 PM #

    I don’t mind taking a transfer that has run into some sort of technical problem. I forget what Whimsett’s issue was…but it wasn’t ability. Sean Berton was the odd man out after a coaching change.

    If anyone remembers the 1991 USA Today high school player of the year on offense, it was a guy named Marquette Smith (on defense, it was Derrick Brooks…FSU got both guys). His mom got sick and he needed to take care of her, so he transferred to a small college back in his hometown so he could live at home and see to her needs.

    I don’t mind taking THOSE guys. It’s the flame-outs that I have a problem with. If you sucked at Ohio State, it’s reasonable to assume that you’re going to suck here.

    As far as next year goes, I don’t care if Beck is the third or fourth-string guy. Proctor will ultimately get moved to safety, I would bet. The current system that Russell Wilson is employing is not the system that Glennon will use when his time comes.

    If Beck leaves, you’re looking at having to take a second-rate HS or JUCO QB to give you a little breathing room until you can find a more legitimate option for the future. We’ve had walk-ons at QB who were roughly the equivalent of Daniel Evans…so I’d just as soon go that route.

  17. RegularExpression 01/02/2009 at 4:32 PM #

    If Beck sticks around and gets into a game, I may have to paraphrase a Bull Durham quote when he enters the huddle:

    “Come on, Beck, show us that million-dollar arm. ‘Cause I got a good idea about that five-cent head of yours.”

    At least that should get some laughs from my section mates before the inevitable INT.

  18. Trip 01/02/2009 at 4:38 PM #

    The laughing has to be a defensive mechanism… I don’t think he’s an asshole, he’s just thrown in the towel because he doesn’t have the swagger/confidence anymore as he’s been beaten by a freshman. Doesn’t mean the team shouldn’t be pissed at him though, I know I would be. When he played with confidence he’d throw interceptions all day long, but he would also complete some as well. The other day, he only threw ONE (If even that, I can’t remember)… This guy had an ego and that helped him play (His license plate from Florida says “NCSUQB”)… but when he was taken out by a freshman QB, he knew his time was up.

    Good kid, let him finish up his degree. Don’t let him see the football field because he is not going to help out in any way.

  19. RegularExpression 01/02/2009 at 4:45 PM #

    Trip, I tend to agree about his confidence. I think he can probably compete pretty well with Wilson in practice and that’s why he did OK at the beginning of the year. In 7 on 7 drills and other passing drills where you only have 1 option of where to throw the ball I’ll bet he looks decent due to his arm strength. He didn’t realize his true shortcomings until seeing just how dazzling Wilson is in real game situations.

  20. SEAT.5.F.2 01/02/2009 at 4:51 PM #

    Noah you are correct about the high probability of Proctor having too much upside at S to stay a signal caller for too long. Clem Johnson probably puts time in at QB at the JuCo level and then goes straight to S when the real fun begins.

    Let’s assume Beck is at the Red/White game and that he is probably short on credits to graduate (harder to do it in four when you transfer). Tough choice but if the stories are accurate that he doesn’t try with everything then he should probably leave so not to set a bad example….but Proctor/Johnson as a 3rd string YIKES!

  21. wufpup76 01/02/2009 at 5:21 PM #

    Here’s a shocker … both the ECU team and it’s fans were about to get into fights either on the field or in the stands before their game against Kentucky

    Class all the way …

  22. CaptainCraptacular 01/02/2009 at 5:29 PM #

    Noah, funny you mention Marquette. He and his wife were my next door neighbors in the late 90s through 2002. He had tried to latch on in the XFL with the Orlando franchise but it didn’t work out. Great guy though.

  23. tcthdi-tgsf-twhwtnc 01/02/2009 at 6:03 PM #

    The fact of the matter is that you must have a solid guy to come in as a backup to a starting QB. I won’t attack Beck as a young man because he is who he is and he just isn’t a big time ACC QB.

    The difference between a great program and a great team is that a program can replace any one player and continue to win. State just isn’t a great program yet.

  24. Alpha Wolf 01/02/2009 at 6:48 PM #

    ^ This is true, not a great program yet. But things are pointed in the right direction.

  25. wufpup76 01/02/2009 at 11:40 PM #

    Way to go Utah!!!

    Can’t wait for all the elitists media guys to say how Alabama “wasn’t focused” or “suffered a natural letdown after losing to Florida” … blah blah blah

    It couldn’t possibly be that a Utah squad from the MWC was the tougher, more dominant team over a previous overall #1 from the SEC … nah, no way

    Elitism sucks b*lls

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