If you didn’t realize it before, then last season proved to the world that Debbie Yow pushed Tom O’Brien out of his office in the Murphy Center (not literally) because of piss poor recruiting that manifested into a thin roster with limited talent. Late last year, our own WV Wolf penned a short but insightful piece (available here) that quickly addressed this topic that would be of value for you to read.
As we head into the next couple of seasons when O’Brien’s recruiting classes will be taking hold, we are starting to see more evidence of the rough condition our program was in upon his departure. For example, take a look at this list of the “Top 15 Players in the Atlantic Coast Conference for 2014”. In this exercise 41 different ACC players received at least one vote as “Top 15” submitted by an expert panel from around the conference. The magazine observers the…
…poll reinforces just how loaded Florida State’s roster is for 2014. Jameis Winston is a clear No. 1 in the voting and five of the top 10 also represent the Seminoles.
* The Seminoles had 14 players receive votes in this experts poll.
* Four different Coastal teams had a player ranked in the top 10: Duke, Pittsburgh, Miami and Virginia Tech.
* There’s a clear drop in quarterback play for the ACC after Jameis Winston. Duke’s Anthony Boone recorded only 11 points, while North Carolina’s Marquise Williams received only three points.
* Four of the top 11 players were wide receivers: Rashad Greene, Jamison Crowder, Tyler Boyd and DeVante Parker.
Well, I see a few more observations that are both disturbing and illustrative of the program that O’Brien left behind to Dave Doeren —
* The ONLY NC State player to make the TOP 41 is Jacoby Brissett who received only one vote that was for a ranking somewhere between #11 and #15. Brissett completed 41 of 74 passes for 455 yards and three touchdowns as a Florida Gator but has yet to play a single down of football in the ACC. The junior was not recruited by Tom O’Brien and announced his transfer to west Raleigh after Dave Doeren took over in west Raleigh.
If you take the same approach to analyzing any preseason work on the ACC you will come to a similar observation — State just doesn’t have that many talented bodies in the upper classes. Take a look at FOUR “All-ACC” squads projected by Phil Steele below and you will see only ONE non-specialist from NC State on the top three teams – defensive tackle, Thomas Teal. Ooops! Even that is not good news for NC State as Teal has been slotted as second string on the most recent depth chart behind freshman, BJ Hill. (Maybe this means that Hill is so good that he can compete for All-ACC honors? If so, I guess that just further supports the obvious take-away that Dave Doeren is working hard to bring a different type of talent into the Wolfpack program than currently exists.
We are not going to beat this dead horse of talent deficiency throughout the season, but I think it is important to understand where things currently stand.