Coach: Chuck Amato
15-9-0, 2 years
2001 Record: 7-5
at Southern Methodist WON 26-17
at Wake Forest WON 17-14
at Georgia Tech LOST 17-27
at Duke WON 55-31
at Florida State WON 34-28
Pittsburgh LOST 19-34

2001 Final Rankings
AP-UR, Coaches-UR, BCS-UR

Philip Rivers is obviously the horse pulling the cart offensively. - (AP Photo)
2002 Outlook

The Pack seems to quietly go about its business while other conference brethren seem to steal the stage. Since Head Coach Chuck Amato arrived, the Raleigh faithful seem to be overcome by joys of promise. Eyes were opened last fall as the historic upset of FSU spilled into national headlines. There wasn't much room to breath as Maryland stole the thunder right back only a week later by beating the Pack in Carter-Finley Stadium, which was followed up by a simply embarrassing display in a Tangerine Bowl loss to Pittsburgh. Philip Rivers is obviously the horse pulling the cart offensively. If he continues to mature as the years pass by, he will be substantial enough to beat any team on any given day. But the fact remains that NC State needs to build some consistency by beating teams they are supposed to. They will have to work around some coaching changes this fall. Senior safety Terrence Holt, brother of Torry, is another NFL whiz kid, making the defensive backs possibly the best in the conference. The team overall has lost a few super studs here and there, but a nucleus of talent and depth could be enough to push NC State into a run with the ACC front runners. The schedule is one derived for the sisters of the poor, about as weak as it gets in the ACC. Other than a trip to Lubbock, predictions show a quick 6-0 start before the rival Tar Heels come calling. If NC State can find its identity by then, the race could get interesting. The predominant theory is that the front lines are just way too short on depth, size, experience, and talent for the Pack to be heavily considered a favorite for New Year's Day honors. It should be said once again however; Philip Rivers is good enough to beat anyone on any given day. Just ask Bobby Bowden.

Projected 2002 record: 9-5

QB - 5 DL - 2.5
RB - 3 LB - 3.5
WR - 3.5 DB - 4
OL - 2 ..

Passing: Philip Rivers, 240-368-7, 2586 Yards, 16 TD's

Rushing: Cotra Jackson, 26 att., 105 yds., 0 TD's

Receiving: Bryan Peterson, 48 rec., 657 yds., 2 TD's

Scoring: Adam Kiker, 13 FG, 24 PAT, 63 pts.

Punting: Austin Herbert, 53 punts, 40.9 avg.

Kicking: Adam Kiker, 13-14 FG, 24-27 PAT, 63 pts.

Tackles: Dantonio Burnette, 110 tot., 49 solo

Sacks: Terrance Chapman, 7 sacks

Interceptions: 4 players with 1 each

Kickoff returns: Lamont Reid, 11 ret., 20.3 avg.

Punt returns: Jerricho Cotchery, 10 ret., 10.9 avg.


OFFENSE: Ray Robinson-TB, Willie Wright-TE, William Brown-OG, Keegan Weir-C
DEFENSE: Corey Smith-DE, Brian Jamison-SLB, Levar Fisher-WLB, Brian Williams-CB

Not much recognition comes out of Raleigh when it comes to naming names. The only popularity award contestant is quarterback Philip Rivers. His resume was built in just his true freshman season of 2000 as he remarkably showed fantastic signs of becoming a possible future Wolf Pack Heisman Candidate. The sophomore numbers of last fall may not be as eye catching as his first year, but his efficiency and accuracy have jumped. He is still on course, even without the services of prime time stars running routes at receiver. His receiving flanks were inexperienced in 2001. However, that aspect could complete a full 180-degree turn this year as the well runs deep. Somebody just needs to emerge as a deep threat in order for head coach Chuck "The Chest" Amato to have a backup weapon outside of the short passing game. The Wolf Pack nit picked opponents last fall with an entourage of passing sets, receivers in motion, picks and crossing routes - but they were all less than 10 yards from scrimmage. A long ball go-getter combination could really light up some scoreboards. Replacing leading rusher Ray Robinson is a key element for the offense. He did it all for NC State. Contra Jackson will get his first look at the starting tailback spot. Watch him, he is just as versatile with dry cleaning skills productive enough to remove any stain. The main concern has to be up front as only two starters return. Fans will not find a shooting star here. Combine the question mark on the line with a new man in the backfield and that could spell major trouble. Coaches have been experimenting with different kids. Solidifying some of the frontline grunts will be crucial.


Returning Starters in Bold
QB Philip Rivers-Jr Jay Davis-Fr
FB Chance Moyer-So Jevon Moore-So
TB Cotra Jackson-Sr Carlos Doggett-Sr
WR Bryan Peterson-Sr Sterling Hicks-So
WR Jerricho Cotchery-Jr Dovonte Edwards-So
TE Joe Gray-Sr Sean Berton-Sr
OT Scott Kooistra-Sr John McKeon-Fr
OG Shane Riggs-Sr Ashley Wingate-Jr
C Jed Paulsen-So Brandon Sanders-Jr
OG Sean Locklear-Jr Brandon Moore-Fr
OT Chris Colmer-Jr Brook Payne-Jr
K Adam Kiker-Jr ..



Light up front, heavy in the rear. That about sums it up for NC State's defense in 2002. The rear includes some very descent cover men in the backfield. The MVP on this side of the ball has to fall on the shoulders of free safety Terrence Holt heading into the season. Not many may be aware of the fact they make maple syrup on Tobacco Road, but Holt has the sticky ability to start his own franchise with combinations of speed and prototypical DB size. As a deep cover man he managed to amass 104 tackles last fall. At corner, the loss of Brian Williams leaves a bunker in the fairway. Junior J.J. Washington showed some blessed skills while starting the first six games of last year but seemed to hit a roadblock after suffering various injuries. Depth is very existent so do not be surprised if this group becomes one of the ACC's best. Still adding tonnage on the backside is linebacker Dantonio Burnett, who was overshadowed in 2001 by Mr. Everything Levar Fisher, even after racking up 114 tackles. He will start in the middle. But the outside is bare with Jamison and Fisher departing. The other side of the coin is much like the offense - the front line is your area of concern. Where's the beef? Coaches better locate some pre-made patties for the bun, as size has become a question mark. It's not that the rush defense was horrible last year, but teams were able to run on this unit. If the Pack desires to give Rivers and the offense favorable time of possession, they need to stuff the line. A few defensive coaches have left town for other pastures including the coordinator. Look for ex-FSU defensive coordinator Chuck Amato to start playing more of a role here. Also of note is punter Austin Herbert, who seems to be the conferences only remote answer to Brooks Barnard at Maryland.


Returning Starters in Bold
DE Shawn Price-Sr George Anderson-Sr
NT Terrance Martin-Sr Ricky Fowler-Jr
DT Sean Locklear-Jr Jerrick Hall-Sr
DE Drew Wimsatt-Sr Terrance Chapman-Sr
SLB Roger Pollard-Jr Avery Gibson-So
MLB Dantonio Burnette-Sr Corrie Dawson-So
WLB Pat Thomas-So Freddie Aughtry-Lindsay-So
CB Greg Golden-So J.J. Washington-Jr
CB Lamont Reid-So Marcus Hudson-So
ROV Andre Maddox-So Julius Patterson-Sr
FS Terrence Holt-Sr Victor Stephens-Jr
P Austin Herbert-Jr ..
Senior safety Terrence Holt, brother of Torry, is another NFL whiz kid. - (AP Photo)