North Carolina State Football

The NC State Wolfpack were a major disappointment in 2013. After opening the season 3-1 in the first year under head coach Dave Doeren, the Wolfpack would lose their remaining 8 games to finish up at 3-9. NC State went winless (0-8) inside conference play for the first time since 1959 and had their streak of 3 straight bowl games put to rest.

While I don’t think anyone expected the Wolfpack to to end up as bad as they did, this team was in a difficult spot to start with. NC State had just 10 starters returning from 2012 and starting quarterback Brandon Mitchell missed half the season due to injury. While Mitchell departs, the Wolf Pack have 14 starters back from last year and will be welcoming in junior quarterback Jacoby Brissett, who transfered in from Florida. Unfortunately they lose their top two receivers and top three tacklers from last year. However, they are experienced up front on both the offensive and defensive lines, which is a big positive for NC State having a bounce back year.

Last Season
ACC (Atlantic)
ATS Record
Points For
Points Against
2014 NC State Wolfpack Schedule
Date Opponent
Spread (Est.)
Win Chance
8/30 Georgia Southern
9/6 Old Dominion
9/13 @ South Florida
9/20 Presbyterian
9/27 Florida State
10/4 @ Clemson
10/11 Boston College
10/18 @ Louisville
11/1 @ Syracuse
11/8 Georgia Tech
11/15 Wake Forest
11/29 @ North Carolina
Estimated Wins: 6.00

Offensively the Wolfpack averaged a respectable 404 ypg, but were only able to translate that into 22.8 ppg. Their 17.7 yards per point was one of the worst marks in the country and no where close to their previous 5-year average of 13.4. NC State also posted a poor defensive yard per point of 13.2, which was also well below their 5-year average. With better health out of the quarterback position and a stronger understanding of the systems installed by Doeren’s staff last year, the Wolfpack should see improvement on both sides of the ball in 2014.

The most promising sign for NC State fans is that even with last year’s horrible showing, NC State still managed to bring in the 32nd ranked recruiting class in the country. It’s even more impressive when you consider the Wolfpack’s average ranking over the last 5 years is 49th. Don’t be surprised if a number of these newcomers get on the field and play a big role in 2014.

Another key factor pointing in the right direction is NC State has a very favorable schedule that will give them an excellent shot at getting back to a bowl game. The Wolfpack have three cupcake non-conference games against Georgia Southern, Old Dominion and Presbyterian and will likely be favored on the road against USF. While they will have to travel to take on one of the top teams out of the Coastal in North Carolina, they have three winnable home games against Boston College, Georgia Tech and Wake Forest.

Regular Season Win Total
ACC Championship Odds
National Championship Odds
150 to 1
425 to 1
Odds Courtesty of Bovada
Season Predictions

I think NC State is a classic example of a team that got hit hard with some injuries and poor quarterback play and were never able to live up their potential. As a result it has the Wolfpack coming into 2014 getting no respect.

While I don’t think they are serious threat in the Atlantic, NC State should have no problem surpassing their 5.5 win total. The basically have 5 wins gift wrapped to them at home against Georgia Southern, Old Dominion, Presbyterian, Boston College and Wake Forest. All they need to do is win one more to get to 6 wins and I have them doing one better and finishing up at 7-5.

As you would expect with a team that didn’t come close to their expectations, the Wolfpack managed to go just 3-8-1 ATS in 2013. I believe last year’s poor record both SU and ATS will have NC State showing a lot of value against the spread in 2014. The key is getting improved play out of the quarterback position. If Brissett steps in an plays well, the Wolfpack will be a great team to back on a weekly basis this season.

2014 Projections
ACC (Atlantic)
ACC Record
Overall Record
Win Total Prediction
OVER 5.5



OVER 7.5 Wins – Tough call for us on this one but we’ll lean slightly to the OVER. Offensively the Pack averaged 30 PPG last year on 409 total yards per game. They should be able to match or even improve that this season. They return QB Brissett, their top three rushers, and five of their top seven pass catchers. The offensive line will start four seniors as well. Defensively this team was all over the map last year. They held WF, Syracuse, and UNC to 17 points or less last year but every other ACC team scored at least 30 on them. The bring back 8 starters on that side of the ball and four of their top five tacklers return. If they are just “OK” on that side of the ball, the offense should do enough to get eight wins. NC State should get off to a fast start as they open with Troy, Eastern Kentucky, Old Dominion, and South Alabama. They should start 4-0 and then they’ll need a .500 ACC mark to get to 8 wins. Again, we think the NC State’s wins land right around this number, probably seven or eight and we’ll lean to eight and the OVER.

More College Football Predictions
Boston College Clemson Florida State Louisville
NC State Syracuse Wake Forest
Duke Georgia Tech Miami North Carolina
Pittsburgh Virginia Virginia Tech
ACC Big 12 American Athletic Big Ten
Conference USA Independents MAC Mountain West
Pac-12 SEC Sun Belt

More College Football