Head coach Tom O'Brien has his Wolfpack squad off to a 3-0 start, but they are going to be tested by defending ACC champion Georgia Tech Saturday afternoon.
O'Brien is weary about the unique schemes the Yellow Jackets employ both offensively and defensively. He feels that most of his players have never defended the triple option offense before. He also noted that when Tech does air it out, the Jackets average over 20 yards per catch.
Georgia Tech has also switched to a three-man down linemen front on defense, presenting new challenges for the offense.
Other tidbits from O'Brien's press conference include:
- Redshirt sophomore linebacker William Beasley is no longer on the team. O'Brien said that Beasley fail to live up to the "champions in the classroom and champions in the community" parts of the team motto. Beasley missed last season due to a suspension and assisted on a tackle in four plays against Western Carolina in his lone action for the Wolfpack.
- O'Brien deemed redshirt sophomore offensive tackle R.J. Mattes' performance against Cincinnati as "okay." Mattes was a starter at right guard in 2009 before tearing his ACL against Florida State Oct. 31. He was making his 2010 debut last Thursday. O'Brien said they are hoping that Mattes will make big strides this week in practice, and they will determine who starts at right tackle at the end of the week. Fifth-year senior Gary Gregory started against Cincinnati. Redshirt junior Mikel Overgaard started the first two games but injured his elbow against Central Florida. He is listed as questionable for the Georgia Tech game.
- O'Brien praised redshirt junior Curtis Underwood Jr.'s patience after falling to third string on the depth chart behind redshirt freshman Dean Haynes and true freshman Mustafa Greene. O'Brien noted that Underwood has to understand he is going to get his opportunity, and when he does he needs to make the most of it. Underwood ran six times for 23 yards against Cincinnati after replacing fumble-prone Haynes.
O'Brien said though they remain confident that Haynes will recover from the Cincinnati game. Haynes is still listed as the starter on the depth chart.
- Playing the role of Georgia Tech senior quarterback Joshua Nesbitt in practice this week will likely be a pair of receivers that are redshirting: junior Tobais Palmer and freshman Bryan Underwood.
- A popular topic of conversation Monday was junior fullback Taylor Gentry, a former walk-on. O'Brien noted that they had a good walk-on program at Boston College, and it's something they are hoping to develop at NC State. He said there are more high school players interested in walking on at NC State then there were at Boston College.
To listen to Monday's press conference, click on the link provided below.