NC State Wolfpack vs. #1 Florida State Seminoles

Good Friday fellow Wolfpackers! Tomorrow is game day and wouldn’t you know it, the #1 Florida State Seminoles are coming to Raleigh and the “House of Horror” that is Carter-Finley Stadium. Before we get into looking at the Noles and the match-ups between them and the Pack, make sure you take a look at what the last 10 years have provided when these two schools have clashed on the gridiron.

Who: #1 Florida State Seminoles at NC State Wolfpack
Where: Carter-Finley Stadium (Raleigh, NC)
When: 3:30 pm (ABC) has a good Q&A with to get a little inside look at the Seminoles:

1. Florida State lost quite a bit of talent off its title team, and while I know the Noles also had a lot of talent with which to plug those holes, have there been some disappointments? Any players or position groups who have underwhelmed so far?

I think that a lot of the disappointments for most of the fanbase stems from a comparison of this year’s team to last year’s. FSU fans are increasingly beginning to realize that such a comparison is just unwise. The 2013 ‘Noles were a historically great team, and to expect everything to break perfectly for this year’s squad in matching the quality of that team was always going to invite disappointment.

That said, there are weaker areas on this year’s team that haven’t featured the emergence of some players that fans had hoped for. The ‘Noles lost two of their top three receivers last season, and we had hoped for the young talent to emerge and provide options for Winston in the passing game. Bobo Wilson has been a solid option in his first two games this season after being suspended for the opener, but senior Christian Green has continued to disappoint, and neither of the blue-chip freshmen (Lane and Rudolph) have made an instant impact. The offensive line play so far has been a concern. The unit returned four of five starters a year ago, but left tackle Cam Erving has not played well this season and center Austin Barron has disappointed as well. We think that some shifts in offensive line personnel may take place as early as Saturday.

On defense, the secondary has been the main disappointment thus far, but from an objective perspective, it shouldn’t have be a disappointment because it shouldn’t have been unexpected. Losing Lamarcus Joyner and Terrance Brooks is huge, even when you replace them with four and five-star talent. Jalen Ramsey played an excellent game at the star position last week, but Tyler Hunter continued to be up and down at safety. Cason Beatty has continued to disappoint at punter, although I will say he played his best game at FSU last week. This sounds like doom and gloom, but the standard set by last year’s team tends to color any evaluation of this year’s squad, even though it shouldn’t.


3. Has the departure of defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt during the offseason had noticeable effects on the defense, for better or worse?

Jimbo Fisher and new coordinator Charles Kelly went to great lengths to point out that the ‘Noles would change nothing on defense following Pruitt’s departure. Kelly was the linebackers coach last season, and the scheme has certainly been very close to what Pruitt ran a year ago. ……. The injury to Lawrence-Stample is huge, and Kelly will have to earn his promotion in figuring out how to deal with it. Nose tackle was really the one position on this team entering 2014 that could not afford to suffer a major loss. While the defensive line development has been better than we expected when the season began, there are major concerns about how the interior defensive line will hold up through the rest of the season and particularly in key, late-season matchups.

4. Is there anything that concerns you guys about the matchup with NC State?

…… There are questions on both lines of scrimmage for the ‘Noles, with new combinations on the o-line and the need to fill the massive (quite literally) void left by Lawrence-Stample on defense.

Let’s take a look at the ‘Noles defense first:

First off, as pointed out by Tomahawk Nation, the Noles have lost a key player on their DL, Lawrence-Stample (#99 NG R-JR 314lbs) that will hopefully open up some running room in the middle. So what have the Noles been doing on Defense?

Whether it’s The Citadel focusing on running the ball or Clemson being more effective passing or Okie State with a balanced attack, FSU has been holding opponents to 300-400 yds/game. NC State’s Offense will be tested to see just how far along they have come since last year. While a lot of Pack players have experienced playing against bigger, faster players, this will be the first time in 2014 they will have experienced it with this squad. I expect another slow start from the State offense but this time due to the increase in talent level of the opposition’s defense. One thing of note to give us Pack fans some hope while on offense: FSU’s defense has a Third Down Conversion Percentage of 49% (24/49). That’s a lot of chances to keep drives going to score. If the Pack can establish a running game and continue their balanced attack, State may be able to keep it interesting.

Key Players:

#24 R-JR LB (WILL) Terrance Smith – The leading tackler on the team with 30 for the season, averaging 10.0 tackles/game and has 2.0 Tackles For Loss (TFL).
#8 SO DB (Free Safety) Jalen Ramsey – Second on the team in tackles, 27 total, 9.0/game, and 2.5 TFL.
#5 JR LB (MIKE) Reggie Northrup – Third on the team in tackles, 25 total, 8.3/game, and 1.0 TFL.

Over to the Noles Offense:

About the only thing consistent with FSU’s offense this season is they haven’t been “The Greatest Show On Earth” like they were last year. That’s going to happen when you lose as much talent as pointed out. You add in Mr. Heisman’s off the field antics and you’re going to have some problems in the beginning.

FSU is relying heavily on the pass with Winston but still has enough balance on offense with their Rushing to keep defenses honest. So who should State be worried about the most?


#80 SR WR Rashad Greene – Without a doubt the most dangerous man on the field. Greene has 24 receptions this season for 418 yards and 2 TD’s. That is 139.3 yards/game and 17.4 yards/catch. He is THE target for the Noles offense.
#9 SR RB Karlos Williams – Williams is one of several in the running back by committee going on in Tallahassee this season but so far he’s the leader. Williams is averaging 59.0 yards/game at 4.2 yards/carry. He’s not one dimensional either; they like to throw to him too. Williams also has 8 receptions for 78 yards, 26 yards/game and 9.8 yards/catch.
#35 SR TE Nick O’Leary – Leary is a nice safety valve across the middle for keeping the chains moving. He has 14 receptions for 156 yards, 52.0/game and 11.1 yards/catch.
#3 SO WR Jesus “Bobo” Wilson – Wilson wins the award for the all name team. Bobo was suspended for the opener against Okie State but has 7 receptions for 91 yards, 45.5 yards/game and 13.0 yards/catch in the last 2 games.



The gulf in talent level is huge, like the gulf between NCSU & Presbyterian, but that hasn’t stopped the Pack from beating FSU in Carter-Finley before. There are those that will continue to disagree with me but I think the biggest problems NC State has is its Defense and the inability by the front six to put pressure on the QB (hanging an average secondary out to dry) AND stopping teams on third down (allowing opponents to continue a drive until they score). These 2 problems will allow FSU to change this from a potentially close game to a 3 TD victory. FSU 38-17.

About 1.21 Jigawatts

Class of '98, Mechanical Engineer, State fan since arriving on campus and it's been a painful ride ever since. I live by the Law of NC State Fandom, "For every Elation there is an equal and opposite Frustration."

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Home Forums NC State Wolfpack vs. #1 Florida State Seminoles

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    1.21 Jigawatts

    Good Friday fellow Wolfpackers! Tomorrow is game day and wouldn’t you know it, the #1 Florida State Seminoles are coming to Raleigh and the “House of
    [See the full post at: NC State Wolfpack vs. #1 Florida State Seminoles]


    DE Mario Edwards has been ruled out. Hallelujah.


    The two biggest problems are really one in the same “the inability by the front six to put pressure on the QB (hanging an average secondary out to dry) AND stopping teams on third down”. It seems we often put teams in 3rd and long, but the inability to pressure the QB allows them time to complete the 8-15 yarder for a 1st down. Of course, as seen in a reply to one of my posts, there may not be as many 3rd downs this game. I would also say that giving up the big play, specifically on the ground is one of our biggest problems. It seems our run defense will be looking good and then give up a 63 yarder. Here’s to better presure and limiting the big plays.


    Jiggy, Thanks for the great job you always do.

    “I think the biggest problems NC State has is its Defense… <snip> … AND stopping teams on third down (allowing opponents to continue a drive until they score).”

    Jiggy, You saw this coming didn’t you? 😉 I share your concern that FSU might continue drives until they score, but frogs might grow wings and not bump their asses when they land. If we stop those drives, it wouldn’t be the first time NC State has stood up to the mighty FSU juggernaut and handed them a defeat.

    The Noles still have to stop OUR running game and they still have to stop OUR short passing game and hope we don’t bite’em in the ass with a long pass while they are doing it. The injuries to some their starting DL might just make a difference.

    That crazy, oblong ball can take some funny bounces. I’m thinking a good thought that it bounces our way. What the hell. Why not? NC State 17, FSU 16 — again.

    Go Pack!


    Despite all of the excellent reasons to fear this game, I’m excited.
    I can’t delude myself into thinking we can beat these guys, these guys have ruled the recruiting world since Jimbo took over.
    But after this game, we’re going to be able to look at the rest of the schedule and have a real idea of what to expect. Right now we really don’t know. And I still think we’ll get a bowl game. We’re great TV!

    1.21 Jigawatts

    Grey, that’s why it’s under the Prediction section and using a little thing I like to call Statistical Probability. I know it’s something crazy I cooked up on my own but basically what it says is this, If you continue to give a team an opportunity to score (4 more downs) then the chances said team will score Go Up!!! I know it’s just crazy talk and I simply pull this crap out of thin air but you know it seems to be a pretty good indicator over time no matter what it’s applied to.

    For example, the lottery. Say you buy a lottery ticket, doesn’t mean you’re gonna win but there’s a chance. Now instead of just 1 lottery ticket you buy half the combinations of numbers. You still may not win the jackpot but your chances have increased in winning. You could win a little (FG), a lot (TD), or not at all.

    Now I see with all the talk you made about NCSU’s offense we both predicted NC State would score 17. Seem’s I took this vaunted rushing attack and passing capability into account. Where you and I don’t see eye-to-eye is NC State’s defense. You apparently think NC State can hold FSU’s offense, which consist of a Heisman QB, a probable NFL WR next year, and who knows how many future NFL talent on that team to the same score as USF. I see NC State struggling on defense, based on it’s own production this season, to hold this same FSU offense to the score NC State allowed against ODU.


    I would also say that giving up the big play, specifically on the ground is one of our biggest problems. It seems our run defense will be looking good and then give up a 63 yarder.

    You have to go back to the first game to find a “big play” over 30 yds. on the ground. The good runs but hardly big plays of 63 yards vs ODU can be attributed to our legitimate concern for the passing ability of last year’s Walter Payton Award winner.

    total rushing 196 yds
    Long of 30 yds
    average of 5.3

    total rushing 70 yds
    Long of 21

    total rushing 122 yds
    Long of 16

    If “giving up the big play, specifically on the ground is one of our biggest problems.” then we have less to worry about than I thought.



    If you did in deed use your Statistical Probability to predict this years game, I’m curious how your Statistical Probability predicted that NC State would only score 17 points. It’s way too complicated for me. Besides that I almost always lean towards the Pack in my wishful thinking.

    I’m also interested in what your Statistical Probability had to say in 2012 about #3 FSU coming into The Carter and losing to unranked NC State, 17-16. I ask this to point to how vulnerable Statistical Probability is to predicting outcomes of college football games. I would trust your method in NFL games. As a matter of fact you may have something to sell to NFL, NHL, NBA and MLB teams. Statistical Probability is the hot trend in all those leagues.

    As always it’s fun debating the stats game with you. Think a good thought about the Pack tomorrow. I know you hope I’m right. 😉


    Graywolf, thanks for the correction. I guess somethings get implanted in my mind and it’s hard to correct the view. What is great about the facts you presented is that the length of the longest run decreased with each game. Dare we hope we hold FSU to a run of no longer than 15 yards?

    I’m just looking for reasons to be optimistic the rest of the season. And I’m not sure anyone in conference is unbeatable by us (1 out 20 happens!). But FSU might be.
    Maybe if they really are weaker on D, and we are as good on offense as my imagination lets me hope, we win 47-46. My lastest worthless prediction.


    You see that stupid NCSU crazy optimism creaping in just before game time don’t you, And Winston still has 23 more hours to screw up and get removed from the line up.


    We will need a lot of luck. Our guys will need to play their absolute best. Few costly, stupid mistakes or penalties. We will need for Fla St to play down to us and make the mistakes we avoid…personal fouls, unsportsmanlike stuff. And we will need them to turn the ball over in both red zones…muffed punts and such. The stars need to line up. BUT, they have lined up for us before……


    Ok…. as the only SFN ‘member’ with “dual citizenship” … let me say that I want to congratulate everybody for their maturity and restraint in this week’s game preparations… Nobody wants to get ‘too fired up’ for a game against the Number One team in the nation.

    Now, let’s be clear… Nobody wants the Pack to Win tomorrow more than I… and if the Pack comes up a little short… I’ll just go back to pulling for my other school… to win another National Championship….

    A couple of weeks ago… we’re were talking about the need for some ‘tack’ling fuel”… so I thought this might get it going…

    Down in FLA … ole Bobby used to feed his boys this way… the night ‘fore the Big Game… Now, what’s good for ‘dem Noles might be good us Wolves… too…

    And speaking of TAIL-GATEING….

    Of course….. that ol’ GatorTail comes out tasting good and looking like this…

    GO PACK!!!

    #NCSU-North Carolina's #1 FOOTBALL school!


    Fortunately stats don’t win games, so let them pad the stat sheet, as long as the final score has the Wolfpack on top.

    john of sparta

    how about a Holes/Rates scoreboard?
    40-something to 70-something.
    no defense ah-tall.


    Correction from me. Stats don’t always win games. So if we can’t hang with FSU statically, wouldn’t matter, if we ended up scoring more points. I will take a win over the noles anyway we can get it.




    While some are concerned with pressure, my chief angst is containment.

    Here’s to gold hamstrings going “POP!!”

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