All of this talk of mid-field logos and such has detracted from the truth of things.
I myself made mention of the fact that tomorrow’s game was relegated to the dreaded 12:30pm Raycom TV slot a couple-ish weeks ago, and it was mentioned again since then. Without going back and reviewing the comments about that, if there even were any, my guess is that they probably had more to do with how much Raycom sucks (which admittedly is true) or how much the ACC office sucks (again, true).
So, why are mid-field logos and how unoriginal they might or might not be really a moot point?
Because no one outside of our two fan bases gives a flying f-ck about this game. And why should they?
Does anyone other than ECU fans care about that logo we’ll so proudly unveil tomorrow? Hell no. I might be the only person outside of the state of North Carolina who will even see that blasted thing.
Here is the unfortunate truth of things. At least historically speaking.
Sometimes the truth hurts.
UNC-NC State football: A state of despair (NewsObserver.com) (Bold added by me, as usual)
The fiercest college football rivalry this state has to offer will again kick off Saturday at 12:30 p.m. – the time reserved for the castaway games and the rejects, the ones too mundane and too irrelevant for primetime or even a 3:30 regional broadcast.
The Carolina-State game, as it’s known from Wilmington to Watauga County, has remained an in-state attraction. Unlike North Carolina’s best high school football players, though, interest in the rivalry stops at the state line and remains within the borders. The repeated appearances on the ACC Network – instead of ESPN or ABC – is proof of that.
It’s not to say that the state’s five in-state FBS (formerly Division I-A) programs – Duke, N.C. State, UNC, Wake Forest and East Carolina – haven’t experienced stretches of success. There have been plenty of teasers.
Wake Forest in 2006 won the ACC championship. N.C. State won a school-record 11 games under Chuck Amato in 2002. UNC ascended into the top five under Mack Brown in 1997, and perhaps was on the cusp of a similar ascension under Butch Davis before scandal erupted. And Duke is bowl eligible for the second consecutive season – a first for the school.
Recruiting data suggests Jones’ assertion has merit. The best prospects in North Carolina leave at a greater rate than in neighboring states. According to Rivals.com, North Carolina has produced nearly as many four- and five-star prospects – those considered the best of the best – as Virginia during the past 10 years.
Half of Virginia’s prospects – 50 out of 102 – remained in state. In North Carolina, 35 of its 96 four- and five-star prospects did so, according to Rivals. That’s the lowest retention rate among North Carolina’s four neighbors.
It’d be one thing if in-state programs were losing those players after recruiting them as hard as some out-of-state programs. But that isn’t always the case, said Jim Bob Bryant, who has led Havelock High to consecutive 3A state championships.
This season, Bryant’s best player is Derrell Scott, one of the top running back prospects in the nation. Scott, Bryant said, is most seriously considering South Carolina, Tennessee and N.C. State. That he’s considering the Wolfpack is a credit to Doeren and N.C. State’s new coaching staff, Bryant said.
“Coach Doeren, he’s been to our school three times since he’s been hired there, and been to one of our games,” Bryant said. “Where the last head coach (Tom O’Brien) never came to my school.”
OK, that’s more than enough quotes from the article I suppose. But there’s way more, so do go read it.
The last quote has me hopeful that this trend might change. But who can say?
It’s no secret that recruiting has been in the dumpster for us not only recently, but always. But to not even make an effort is really a putrid way to run a program. Looking back, I’m actually amazed that we did as well under TOB as we did, all things considered.
So how does that change?
Hopefully, an energetic and creative coaching staff, which I’m hopeful that we now have (though the jury is still waaaayyyy out on that determination, admittedly) would be a good start.
Kicking some Tar Heel hiney tomorrow, even though no one much will see it, would help too.