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UNC names Withers interim football coach

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CHAPEL HILL — UNC assistant football coach Everett Withers, above,  has been named interim head coach for the Tar Heels program, the university announced this evening.

A Charlotte native, Withers has served as UNC’s defensive coordinator and secondary coach under Butch Davis the last three seasons.  Last year, UNC’s defense ranked fourth in the ACC and 30th in the country.
Withers contract for the 2011 season will be amended to reflect his promotion to interim head coach.  Details will be available at a later date.  With Withers' promotion, the Tar Heels will begin the process of hiring a full-time assistant to complete the staff, according to a release issued by the university.

“The Chancellor and I spoke with him this afternoon and we believe he has the leadership qualities to help our student-athletes deal with the challenges ahead," said UNC athletics director Dick Baddour.  "We are fortunate to have someone with his credentials and background.  He is ready for this position.”

In a statement released by UNC, Withers said he was honored that university chancellor Holden Thorp and Baddour have faith in him to serve as interim head coach.

“I realize this appointment is coming during a tough transition for our football players and staff," he said.  "My job and the job of our assistant coaches is to prepare these students to perform at the highest level this season.  I love Carolina and this community, and I will do everything I can to make the Tar Heel fans proud of this team.”

Thorp said he believes Withers is the right person for the football program "under these challenging circumstances."

 “I am impressed with the relationships he has built with our players and staff, and it is our top priority to help our student-athletes going forward," Thorp said in the statement. "I believe he can help our students succeed at the highest level both on and off the field and in the classroom.”
Withers will address the media at 3 p.m. Friday.


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I wouldn't normally have

I wouldn't normally have made a prediction this early either.  Heels20 asked me what I thought.  I didn't know at the time he was asking just so he could tell me I was an idiot for thinking it.

I asked the question...

...knowing that you would throw out an overly optimistic prediction.  You didn't disappoint.

I told you....I don't think

I told you....I don't think 9 wins is overly optimistic.

You act like everything has to go perfectly for NCSU to even hope to win 9 games, and that isn't true.

Yeah it is...

State basketball hasn't won that many games in over 5 years.  Lorenzo Brown has shown to be good, but not outstanding.  Scott Wood is a good, but not extraordinary, 3 point shooter.  CJ Leslie is an exceptional talent, but there has yet to be any indication that he'll translate that talent into major oncourt success.  You have no true proven big man.  With Brown running the point, you won't have anything more than an average shooting guard.  How in the world do you get 9 wins out of that?

Well, for one thing, I think

Well, for one thing, I think that every second Brown played at the 2 was a waste because he's a natural PG.  I think he will be outstanding this season.

I don't understand your Wood comment.  In every game NCSU played last year, the one thing every team knew they had to do was keep Scott Wood from beating them.  There wasn't another perimeter guy that you really had to pay any attention.  Despite that, Wood made 41.9% of 172 attempts, 4th best in the league.  What do you consider extraordinary?  Especially for a guy who took so many. 

Wood's performance is part of why I said Tyler Harris and Alex Johnson as threats can make a huge difference, because they should get Wood more open shots.  Or, they should get open shots that they are more capable of making than the guys who were out there last year. Either way is good for NCSU.

Every team in the ACC not named Duke or UNC is going to have holes.  FSU won 11 games last season, and they had several guys in their rotation that would probably rate average.

Wood and other things

I don't know where you're getting this about Brown being a natural point guard.  The fact that he's played the position before doesn't mean that he's a natural point guard.  If he was, then why was he never projected as State's guy over Harrow and Gonzalez?

Wood has only taken over a couple games in his career as a 3 point shooter.  He averaged less than 10 ppg last season and his lack of versatility holds him back from being a major threat.  JJ Redick was an extraordinary 3 point shooter.  Wayne Ellington was an extraordinary 3 point shooter.  You can talk about guys like Scott Wood and Gary Clark and how accurate they are from the perimeter, but what difference does it make when it's so easy to shut them down just by defending that one dimension that they offer?

Tyler Harris and Alex Johnson will be coming off the bench.  How is Wood going to get open shots when they're on the bench?

Every team in the ACC including Duke and UNC have holes.  The other 10 schools have more holes, but I think a lot of those 10 have fewer holes than NC State.  The difference between you and me is that I am recognizing the proven talent on other teams while you are speculating about the unproven guys at State.

9 Would Be Fine!

State was horrible last year and won 5 games. They were essentially 5 guys playing one-on-one, with no one able to single-handedly take over a game. Because of the coaching change, I am not sure that references to last year necessarily predict the future in this case.

Is 9 wins optimistic? Absolutely, but it is not hard to envision a 4 game swing with the same guys, some organization on offense and consistent effort. There should be better production out of guys like Wood, Brown and Howell with an actual offense that they can run with some level of comfort.

You did touch on one point in an earlier post that I think may be a serious topic of discussion in the next couple of years. That would be the influx of new coaches into the ACC this year and last. It seems to me that there are some good young coaches with upside to go along with some pretty good veteran coaches that are new to the ACC. So I think we could see the conference return to the top to bottom national prominence that many feel had been lost in recent years. 

That's my point

I'm not saying that State won't improve.  I even said that my prediction is that over the next few years, Gottfried will make them at least a middle-of-the-pack ACC team and an NCAA tournament team.  But even under the assumption that Brown's switch to point guard goes smoothly, and Wood becomes more effective from the perimeter, and Gottfried runs an offense that is a better fit for the personnel, you can't ignore the other teams in the ACC. 

VT was a very good basketball team robbed of an NCAA bid, and they played the season on one leg.

Miami has both experience and talent at the guard position, and could be a very good team if Reggie Johnson returns healthy.

FSU has several pieces to the puzzle, and while we all know Leonard Hamilton won't lead them to an ACC title, we know they'll be competing in the top half.

Clemson has guys like Andre Young and Tanner Price who can kill you from the outside, while Devon Booker can bang it in on the inside.  Not to mention that Brad Brownell is a very good basketball coach.

Those are just four examples of other teams in the conference who have a lot going for them already.  Where NC State is saying "we're unproven in this area, but could make it happen this season," other teams are saying "we've already gotten production in this area, so how can we add another dimension?"

So I do agree with you that State can improve and that they are in a field of teams that aren't even sniffing a top 2 ACC spot.  At the same time, I think the "expectation" of 9-7 is very unrealistic and that NC State will not earn an NCAA tournament bid this coming season.

Because Sidney Lowe thought

Because Sidney Lowe thought that Brown could effectively play the 2 and Gonzalez and Harrow could only play the 1.  That's pretty simple.

You didn't say player.  You said 3 point shooter.  Ellington never shot as high a percentage from 3 as Wood did last year, and I guarantee you the teams that he played on led to him having many more wide open chances.  JJ Redick was a NPOY.  Did I give any indication whatsoever that I thought Wood was going to do that this year?  You're pulling stuff out of your ***.....and you're getting exactly what you'd expect from there. 

You don't know for sure that they'll both be coming off the bench.  All Johnson has to do is beat out CJ Williams, which may not be impossible.  A lot of that will be determined by what Gottfried wants out of certain positions.

You are so uninformed

Stop blaming everything on Lowe.  NO ONE projected Brown to be State's starter at point guard last season.  No one.  He is a natural 2 that can play the one because of good ball handling skills and penetration ability.  Dexter Strickland is a natural 2 that can play the one because of good ball handling skills and penetration ability, but no one is pretending that he is a true point guard.

Because you are never able to properly interpret my comments, let me rephrase.  Wood is a good, but not incredibly effective 3 point shooter.  His lack of versatility keeps him from being a major threat to opposing teams.  That's why he averaged less than 10 ppg last season.

Alex Johnson is too small to start at the 2 for State.  CJ Williams will be the senior leader of this team and start at the 2.  The senior who has played for NC State, not the transfer who was brought in to play backup point guard.

Gottfried can want anything out of any position, but quite frankly, NC State does not have the talent to meet your expectations without a lot going right for the Pack and a lot going wrong for others.

No one projected Brown to be

No one projected Brown to be the starter at PG last season.  OK.. so what?  Gonzalez was a senior, and Harrow was supposed to be the answer at PG.  That doesn't mean it wasn't a poor decision to play Brown at the 2, and it doesn't mean he wasn't the best PG on the team.

John Henson was more effective at the 4 than the 3 for UNC as a freshman.  He was usually more productive than Ed Davis.  But, Ed Davis played the 4 and Henson played the 3 until Davis was "injured" and Henson moved to the 4 full-time.  Does the fact that Henson spent almost a whole season playing the 3 mean that he is a 3?  Same thing for Brown.

Wood averaged less than 10 points a game last season because if a team decides to take away one player and dare others to beat them, they can usually take care of that one guy.  When your offense is centered on passes to the block resulting in double teams that then result in open jumpers, and the defender guarding your one shooter won't leave him for much of anything, it doesn't work out all that well.  Harrow couldn't make 3's.  Brown didn't make them consistently.  Smith didn't really draw double teams all that often.  Who was creating space for Wood?  You're giving Ellington credit for playing with Lawson, Green, Hansbrough, etc., and penalizing Wood because he didn't.

Lorenzo Brown and Scott wood are the leaders of this team.  Period. 

Huge difference

Henson was playing the 3 solely becaues Williams promised to play him there to get him ready for the NBA.  When both came to the realization that it was a bad call to do so, they moved him to the 4, his more natural position.

That is an awful analogy and totally different situation than Brown.  Brown didn't play point guard until his post grad year at Hargrave.  Javi had some late season success at the position his junior year, and Harrow as much more of a natural point guard than Brown.  The reason that none of them worked out was because there wasn't anyone other than an injured Tracy Smith who could produce.  Brown had success at times while at the 2, but what can he do when no one else is stepping up?

Your third paragraph is a freakin' joke.  Smith was always getting double-teamed.  It still wasn't hard to shut down Wood, because no one else was going to hit a shot, but it's insane to say that Smith never faced the double team.  Furthermore, are you really saying that the only thing that separates Ellington from Wood is his teammates?  That's ridiculous, dude.  Ellington was so much more versatile than Wood.

Wood isn't good enough to be State's leader.  Brown may or may not step into that role, but Wood is not good enough to.  Williams is the hardest working player on the team, and the lone scholarship senior who has always been a Wolfpacker.  It would be crazy to say that his leadership won't factor in.

Ellington was a 2, Wood is a

Ellington was a 2, Wood is a 3.  Ellington is supposed to be more versatile.  If you think the teammates didn't impact Ellington's performance you're not being honest with yourself.

So, a promise that Roy made to Henson justifies playing him out of position, but a promise Sid made to Brown and Harrow doesn't?  Seems odd.  Harrow didn't actually bring the ball up in HS all the time, either.  There was another kid who did.  Harrow was expected to score a lot, so they let him "rest" by not bringing the ball up.  I watched a couple of his HS games on the web (whole games, not highlight reels).

By the way....;_ylt=Ag2zyPlMS.aroeve8O9Aumgxs5B4

That's Rivals' ranking of point guard in 2009.  Be sure to pay special attention to #7.  The reason that '09 is important is that it shows that he must have played some PG in HS.  He was a HS PG projected by some to switch to SG in college, which is EXACTLY like Henson being a HS PF expected to switch to SF in college.


From paragraph one, you have several flaws.  First of all, in NO way did I imply that Ellington wasn't helped by his teammates.  Second of all, where the hell do you come up with the theory that the two should be more versatile than the three?  The three is expected to contribute from both the perimeter, and inside, as well as handling rebounding responsibilities.  Just because Wood can only do one of those as a 3 doesn't mean that 2's are expected to be more versatile.

Where do you see anything about Sidney Lowe making a promise?  Not saying it didn't happen, but you could very well be making that up.

So are you implying that a PG brings the ball up the court 100% of the time?  I saw Harrow live, in person, on a couple occassions when he was in high school.  He was the undisputed point guard of Walton.

You can pull up one recruiting website, but Scout has him down as a shooting guard in 2009 and combo in 2010.

How in the world does Brown's situation relate to Henson?  The promise was made to Henson because he was projected as a 3 in the NBA.  Brown's situation had nothing to do with any NBA projection.  You're analogies are TERRIBLE.

Here's an article that

Here's an article that quotes Brown's HS coach talking about the guy who took Lorenzo's place at PG and the reasons he didn't get bigger offers sooner.

I'm sure it means nothing to you, though, since you know more about it than Brown's coach.

As far as Scout is concerned, you're wrong about that, too.  He's listed as a SG by scout both times,  The PG in '10 denotes him being a post-grad player. 

Re: Ellington/Wood.  I didn't say anything about defense, rebounding, or anything else.  What I said was that he could shoot better.  And he can.  And he did.  NC State's offense the last few years wasn't all that hard to defend, and if you want to pretend like it's because of the players running it that's your choice.  I know that the structure of the offense limited options, and when you limit yourself you are putting your own team in a hole.  NCSU wasn't talented enough to climb out of that hole, but my hope is that better coaching can avoid self-inflicted damage of that sort.

Look again

Position: SG, PG

Kinda like it says for Purvis.  Yet again, you're wrong.

Not even going to continue this argument.  In review, you have said that you expect NC State to go 9-7, Tracy Smith was hardly ever double-teamed, Dennis Horner didn't suck, Lorenzo Brown and Scott Wood are leaders over CJ Williams, and that Brown is a point guard comparable to John Wall and Derrick Rose.

Toying with you has been fun, but time to move on.  Your argument has become pathetic.

Do you know how columns

Do you know how columns work?  Tables with columns?

If you think that it says "SG PG" under position for Lorenzo Brown, then you also must think it says "PF 4" for CJ Leslie, and "PG 8" for Ryan Harrow.

Now, I could understand the confusion since PF actually is the 4 spot.  But, what in the world is 8?

If you look at the column beside "Pos", you will see it says "Nat'l Rank".  CJ was 4 at his position, Ryan was 8 at his position.  Lorenzo didn't qualify for the position rankings because he was PostGrad.

Purvis is listed by scout at this link:

He is listed as a SG, not a SG/PG. 

Not a hard concept


Can we get to and then thru football season?

"This could ultimately be a

"This could ultimately be a project that lasts a few years."

It will definitely be a project that lasts a few years, whether my ideas for the season wind up true or not.  The goal of this "project" isn't to finish 9-7, so that wouldn't be the end of it.

If you take away CJL's 3 pointers, he still took the most shots of any NCSU player.  Now, some of that was CJ taking bad shots, which is something that I have to hope MG can limit.  But, some of it was CJ catching the ball on the low block and not really having a move to make.  I don't think CJ had ever been taught low post moves (ever...not just at NCSU)...I think he had gotten by on sheer athleticism.  Being a year older and stronger will help that, but so will better coaching and a system that is geared more toward the strengths of his game.  CJ had a some freedom under Lowe....that is true.  But, for you to act like he wasn't primarily an in-the-paint player (especially as the offense got started) is crazy.  Richard Howell typically subbed in for Leslie, so that should really tell you all you need to know.  Leslie needs to get the ball 15-18 feet from the basket, facing up, with a chance to attack his defender off the dribble.  In the high post, that is what he should be doing.  In Lowe's offense, he usually got it 10 feet or less from the basket which takes away his quickness as a weapon.

All the players, the returnees and especially last year's freshmen, were looking forward to big changes in the offense from Sidney Lowe.  They ended up playing in the exact same offense Lowe had always had...pound it, pound it, and pound it.  I think that some of what you (and I) would call laziness based on what we saw may have, in reality, been the result of a very demoralizing season working on the players' attitudes.

Lowe really only got the most out of his first team for about two weeks.  The ACC Tournament and a few NIT games.  Other than that, his first team was just like his last four.  It just wasn't as obvious because people gave them the benefit of the doubt because there weren't many players on the team.

I'm not acting like there's not a lot of talent on the other teams.  I'm not acting like they aren't experienced.  What I am acting like is that there isn't much of a difference between a 9-7 or 8-8 ACC team and a 5-11 ACC team.  Except for 1 UNC game and the Duke games, State had a chance to win basically every ACC game they played.  Boneheaded coaching and poor execution cost them a lot of games down the stretch.  I believe that some of the poor execution was the result of running NBA-style sets without the necessary NBA talent. 


Your suggestion that what we perceived as laziness may have been demoralization is a concept that I hadn't considered, but does have some merit. As the season went on, you could see the confidence diminish, just by watching each players' body language. Whatever Sid was trying to get them to do, it wasn't working (a pattern that persisted throughout his tenure at State). They have nowhere to go but up.

It's too early for me to predict where I think the Pack will end up this year. The best I can say is pretty much what I think you are saying, UNC and Duke are 1-2 (not necessarily in that order), Wake is last, and everyone else can fall anywhere from 3-11. This isn't exactly news to anyone, but there are just too many dynamics at this time to say much more. Preseason predictions are always tough and will be even moreso now. In any event, it should be an exciting season as parity exists for 75% of the conference.

But Keep in Mind

State is not the only team that left games on the floor.

Of course...everybody does

Of course...everybody does it.

I feel like NCSU had an inordinate amount.  Most teams also win a couple they should have lost...NCSU didn't really do that.

Your inability

To see anything from an outside-of-NCSU-perspective is amazing.

You do understand that we

You do understand that we are talking about NCSU, right?

Why would I think about NCSU's season from an outside-of-NCSU perspective?

UNC should have a good defensive line this year.  Should I factor that into my prediction for NCSU football?  I can't imagine it will make more than a 1 game difference.


A fan can look at things from an objective perspective.  For example, before the UNC investigation even hit last year's football team, I was predicting 9-3.  In hindsight, that was underestimating what that team could've done.

Here we go again...

I've already told you.....I think last year was a case of misuse more than it was lack of talent.

As such, while NCSU finished behind the teams you named, I don't necessarily believe those teams were more talented.  UNC finished 5-11 in the ACC a couple of years ago.  Do you honestly believe there were 8 teams in the ACC more talented than UNC that year?

Roy played John Henson out of position for much of that year.  Sid tried to make CJL into a post player when he isn't one.  As a four in Gottfried's system, he won't be asked to post up very often.  He should be more comfortable.  Now, I think that is me looking at what CJL was asked to do last year and then thinking about what he'll be asked to do under the new coach, and thinking he should be closer to the player he was projected to be under the new system.  You will take that as pie in the sky State fan talk.

I think that de Thaey can come in and be (at least) a more athletic version of Dennis Horner.  You say that Horner sucked so it doesn't matter.  I say that if Horner was on a team with a point guard and other threats, he would have been a solid role player.  He spent most of his time with Javi Gonzalez and Julius Mays as his point guards. 

I'm not really expecting the other teams to be bad.  I'm expecting NCSU to play in the manner they are capable of....or at least a lot closer to it.

A couple things

CJ Leslie shot 28 three pointers last season.  You're acting like Lowe cemented his feet to the paint when, in reality, Tracy Smith and Richard Howell were doing most of the work in the paint while Leslie had freedom as a 4.

Furthermore, these other teams have not only more talent than you give them credit for, but more experience.  That's why I think Gottfried has a chance of turning this program around...but only in the long term.  Yes, you expect State to play up to their potential, but they were lazy last season, and as I've said many times before, Gottfried didn't always get the best out of Alabama.  And keep in mind that Lowe, who you claim held this team down, got the most out of the team he had his first year when Atsur was healthy.  This could ultimately be a project that lasts a few years.

NCSU BBall vs UNC Football

Sendek >= Butch > Bunting = Sid

Quit arguing nonsense.  Last five years go to UNC Football because Sid was so unbelievably bad.  Historically it is not even close in favor of NCSU BBall.  Going forward, who knows.  Too much can happen with Gottfried, recruiting, the NCAA and UNC's Coaching search.  I can say with some confidence that Gottfried will not be as bad as Sid and UNC will probably see a drop in talent going forward.    


UNC football:

Uncertain coaching.  Uncertain AD.  Uncertain NCAA sanctions.  Lots of personnel losses.  1st time head coach dealing with lots of issues (although I will admit I like Withers a lot and think he was the best choice for the interim job).  Uncertain recruiting until permanent coach is named.....will guys commit to a coach who may not be there next year? 

NC State basketball:

Coach on solid ground.  Good returning base of talented players who showed flashes of brilliance but inconsistency last year.  Incoming players to fill holes on roster (backup PG, bruising PF, and a sharpshooting wing along with a SG who should play a small role), 2 of whom are strictly Gottfried recruits.  New coach was able to hold on to Tyler Lewis for '12 and add Torian Graham, and in the mix for many top '12 players.  Players being held to higher standards regarding summer workouts.  New coach is obviously much better than old coach.

I think that is an objective look at both programs.  The biggest disagreement we're having is you want to talk about "the last 'x' years" in your comparison, when I think that's irrelevant.  "5 straight NCAA's" at NCSU didn't matter when Sendek left and 5 of his top 7 players left.  

In my opinion, the questions swirling in Chapel Hill put UNC football at a disadvantage.  Now, similar to what I said earlier, UNC could go 10-2 and Withers could be named permanent head coach in November.  Then, I would give the edge in this ridiculous comparison back to UNC football.  But, right now, I give the advantage to the program that isn't facing NCAA sanctions and has a full-time head coach. 

The reason we disagree so much is you think that everyone who doesn't think the sun rises and sets** in Chapel Hill is an ABC-er.

**gatr....that is a metaphor - I don't really believe that he thinks the sun actually rises and sets in Chapel Hill.

Through the heart

I better go call my momma and let her tell me how much she loves me. My feelings are hurt. How will I go on ...

Funny thing

Funny that in your "objective" assessment you failed to mention the loss of Tracy Smith or the fact that Brown has little experience running the point on the college level.  Also, a bruisng PF?  According to who?

I'm not saying you have to agree with me to have a valid argument.  I'm saying that if you're going to say all the negative things, then you have to list the positives as well.  For example, you can say that Carolina's program is looking at sanctions, and that there were guys cheating in the classroom and a head coach who should've and maybe did know something about what was going on.  But if you're going to say that, you also have to say that the coaching staff did an outstanding job last season with what they had to work with, the team persevered, many of those guys are back and now have experience through adversity.  See?  It's not too hard.

By the way, still confused about these mass personnel losses to which you're referring...

Yates, Pianalto, Burney, D.

Yates, Pianalto, Burney, D. Williams, Draughn, Sturdivant, Carter, and probably some other guys that I'm forgetting.  Honestly (and I don't mean this as a dig even though it will sound like it), I'm not sure who was there and who was suspended once you get past the big names, so the roster I'm looking at is hard to judge.

Now, I know that in your mind UNC has replacements for all those guys who are going to step in and be just as good or better.  As a State fan, the Jay Davis's and Marcus Stone's of the world have taught me to wait and see.

The team last year beat FSU and Clemson, and those were the only two wins that were really impressive (by impressive, I mean the opponent...UNC had some other impressive wins, but those were more about how UNC won games rather than who they beat).

I already explained to you that I, personally, do not give credit to coaches for overcoming self-inflicted wounds.  UNC broke the rules and got caught.  Those players being out was not "an unfortunate circumstance that the coaches overcame", it was punishment for breaking the rules.

State basketball basically played without Smith last year.  He was injured the entire season, and was a shell of the player he had been in prior years.  de Thaey is very talented, and if he had played here he would have been a highly-rated recruit.  He was a very good addition by Gottfried, especially for the UCLA high-post that MG likes to run.


As I stated before, Yates will be a lot ot make up for.  Pianalto missed half the season, and half his career for that matter, but we were fine.  Burney missed over half the season, and Jabari Price proved to be a suitable replacement.  Charles Brown is a proven corner and will be back after missing all of last season.  Draughn is a loss, but Houston will be back after missing all of last year.  No, Houston is not a speed back, but Gio Bernard's skills could very well complement that.  Sturdivant missed several games in the first part of last season, while Carter missed 2 and a half of the last 3 games.  Zack Brown served as a proven talent in their absences.

Your Jay Davis/Marcus Stone argument doesn't stand considering how many of these guys have PROVEN replacements.  Could Renner crash and burn?  That's possible.  But that's not enough to consider it a mass personnel loss.

Tennessee was one of the hotter teams around when we played them, with a QB who was undefeated as a starter.  Are they not a quality opponent?  ECU defeated NC State last season.  Are they not a quality opponent?  We didn't lose to a single team last season that we were expected to beat.  You can counter that argument if you'd like, but I wouldn't suggest it because I know ahead of time that you will be missing facts and posting something without thinking about it.

Your 4th paragraph completely ignores what I said in my last post.  If you're going to point out the bad things, then you must point out the good things in order to make a balanced argument.  Are you saying that the coaching staff did nothing right last year?  Are you saying that there was no indication of the depth and talent on the team because it should all be discredited by the negativity surrounding the program?  This is 100% proof that you don't even care to make a fair and balanced argument.

Tracy Smith didn't miss any of ACC play last season.  You also saw how poorly State played during his absence, which could very well be an indication of what they could look like this season without a big man.  What proof do you have that de Thaey is a great player?  Horner was a 4-star PF.  Costner was a 5-star PF.  But I know the answer to why you think he's great: Because he plays for State, so we must assume the best.

State basketball is in trouble this season for a couple reasons.  Let's say that Brown does well at the point, which he did in the second half against Carolina this season.  Who's going to help him if Wood is cold?  You have no proven big men.  He can't do it all by himself.  There is currently a gaping hole to be filled in the post where you will no longer have Tracy Smith.  There is no scoring option at shooting guard with Brown at the point.  After what we saw last year, how many possessions are you going to lose from Leslie taking ill-advised shots?  Open your eyes: State basketball has problems.  Gottfried will have to do an amazing job for immediate success, and despite the additions that will come from Harris, Lewis, and Graham, still has major holes to fill.

Couple things about State hoops

Tracy Smith played on one leg last year after he came back in December(?). He was a shadow of the player that he was in previous years, probably for two reasons. One was the leg injury that never healed and the second was that Lowe completely lost his team and they finished the season in a total funk.

To say that State is "in trouble" this year is premature. Expectations of a quick turnaround also are premature. In the frontcourt, State has Vandenberg, Howell, Painter and Leslie, all of whom mostly underachieved last year, but did show some moments of what they could be with the right leadership. You are correct that the Pack is thin at guard and have to get solid, injury-free seasons from Brown, Williams, and Johnson, with some spot duty from Raymond. They may even go big with Wood at the 2 occasionally. If de Thaey gives them some decent minutes rebounding and scoring from beyond the arc, that would be a nice bonus and take some pressure off of Wood. Leslie is the wild card in the mix. If Gottfried can get CJ's head straight (a task that rivals achieving peace in the Middle East or in Washington, D.C.), the Pack could be a team to be reckoned with.

Granted that's a lot of ifs, but I have seen enough of these guys to conclude that the talent is there. It's all about head and heart now. The optimist in me is showing, but it's not without some merit.

Pack Hoops

I'm not ruling out the possibility that State could turn it around, but I am saying that there are some major holes and a lot will have to happen to get this team dancing again.  As I stated in another post, Smith may have been hurt, but he was better injured than the other big men were healthy.

Lorenzo Brown is currently the bright spot of this team.  If used correctly, Scott Wood could add to that.  But you have to admit, flashes of brilliance seen from guys like Painter and Vandenberg mean little until flashes turn to consistency.  I know that these are true fighting words, but Larry Drew II at times showed flashes of brilliance.


The Drew II comment was a low blow, but a valid comparison. We'll see how it goes, but we just don't know because these guys apparently weren't coached at all. I have absolutely no idea what Sid did in practice and his players played like they didn't either.

It'll be a project

But to Gottfried's credit, he has done about all he can up until this point.

Tennessee beat Memphis, Ole

Tennessee beat Memphis, Ole Miss, Vanderbilt and Kentucky for their 4 game winning streak, which isn't exactly Murderer's Row.  Plus, UNC won the game on a fluke play that was so bad the rule that allowed it to happen has been changed.

ECU was a bad loss for State, not a good win for UNC.

The guys who replaced the players I say represent the mass personnel losses, along with the players who left, led UNC to an 8-5 record.  Plenty of the wins were the result of TJ Yates playing well.  Will Brenner be able to put the team on his back? 

You lost to NCSU last year, and I can't find any site that didn't have UNC as at least a 2 point favorite in that game.  I'm not checking the other L's, but that's at least one you lost that were supposed to win.

Your "proven replacements" line is hogwash, even if you capitalize it.  They could have played the most in easier games....or in games you lost.  It's not as simple as saying "this guy played some last year, so he's obviously ready", because there are variables involved. 

Your "Tracy Smith played in every ACC game" argument is also rubbish.  I didn't say he missed the whole season.  I said he was never healthy.  The reason I said he was never healthy is because he was never healthy.  The games that he played were played on a bad knee, which is doubly bad for an under-sized PF who relies on speed to be effective.

Harris (the FR, who will be there this year not next year) and Johnson (the transfer) are both shooters who can take pressure off of Wood.  Johnson is a proven college-level shooter, and Harris is thought to be a great shooter (you never know for sure until a FR actually does it) even though he's 6'8".  If Harris is able to contribute, I wouldn't be surprised to see a lineup with Brown at PG, Wood at SG and Harris at SF, which would be as much size as State has had in a while. 

I'm not sure if you mean the Horner and Costner comments as criticism or compliment when it comes to de Thaey.  The fact is that if he can come in and be as effective as either of them then he's a big help to the team.  Based on everything I've read, he's an athletic, energetic rebounder with a pretty good shot and a willingness to attack the basket.  At 6'8" and (I think) about 240, he should add something that NCSU hasn't had in quite a while. 

Coach Gottfried is not beholden to any promises made to CJL, real or imagined, that may have affected his playing time under Coach Lowe.  I have no reason to believe that CMG won't sit him down if he goes off the plan.  Also, I have much more reason to believe that the plan will be better (especially on offense) with CMG in charge.

NCSU doesn't have a proven post scorer.  That is very true.  Vandenburg and Painter are decent defensively, though, and I don't think low post scoring is a vital cog of the high post offense.  If it was, it probably wouldn't be called a high post offense.  They need to defend and rebound.  Richard Howell has lost 20 pounds since Gottfried was hired (that's another of those things that let me know that Gottfried is running a tighter ship).

Heh, just keeps getting better

Excuse after excuse after excuse.

-UNC beats Tennessee on a fluke?  If that's your logic, then State beat Carolina on Spencer's fluke TD catch.

-"ECU was a bad loss for State, not a good win for UNC."  One of the more biased lines in your argument, especially considering UNC beat ECU by 25 I believe (didn't take the time to check the score).

-UNC's backups only played in the easy games?  Uh, yeah, with the suspensions and injuries, we had at least some of the replacements playing in every single game last season.  Not only was the team fine, but those players themselves played well.

-Tracy Smith was better injured than any other State big man was healthy.  Still represents a massive hole.

-I've seen Tyler Harris play on three occassions this summer.  Your analysis of him is so far off that I must suggest you start reading other scouting reports.  He is a hard worker and can one day be a good player on the college level, but he has a long way to go.  By no means is he a 3 point shooter.

-Johnson is indeed a proven shooter.  However, he's too small to play the 2.  I don't see how he in any way could factor in for more than 20 minutes per game this year.

-Costner had an overall unproductive career and Horner was not a good basketball player.  If de Thaey on the court is comparable to either one of those two, do not be excited.

-You always assume the best for State.  ASSUME.  You ASSUME that Leslie will be benched if he doesn't produce.  You ASSUME that Gottfried will do a much better job than Lowe.  Here, again, is an example of your inability to make a balanced argument.  You ASSUME things will fall into place for State, while you ASSUME that Carolina has a dark future ahead.

-The guy in the low post doesn't matter as much when you're Duke.  But when Kyrie Irving, Nolan Smith and Seth Curry turn into Lorenzo Brown, CJ Williams, and Scott Wood, then you're going to need a big man.  Howell may have lost weight, but again, you're ASSUMING that he'll be the answer.

Maybe State basketball does turn it around.  But there are MANY questions that have to be answered.  Right now, I'd have to see before I start believing.

And please, for the love of God, go watch some of these guys live.  People will only laugh at you if you highlight Tyler Harris with his 3 point shooting ability and highlight Brown as a John Wall/Derrick Rose type.

- Sorry...I missed the memo

- Sorry...I missed the memo where they outlawed catching deflected passes.  They did outlaw getting a penalty to stop the clock.

- State didn't play the first quarter of that game.  The fact that State lost and UNC won big doesn't make it a quality win for UNC.  ECU is a team that NCSU should have run off the field.

- UNC's DL will be good this year.  Their LB and DB were good last year, and this year I think they are unknowns at this point.  They should be OK, but until they are playing you just don't know.  There are a lot of guys in the NFL now who actually weren't suspended, and I don't think it's a given that they are being replaced by NFL players.

- Correct.  But, Tracy Smith wasn't very good last year.  He was the focus of the offense more than he should have been but our coach was either too stubborn or too...well, let's go with change things up.

- Re:  Tyler Harris

Harris is a lefty wing that can score in a variety of ways. On the break he can hit the spot up three and although thin he is a crafty finisher in the lane. Harris can also knock down mid range jumpers off the catch or dribble with his very smooth and quick shooting stroke. Harris also has an excellent feel for the game.

Harris must add strength and work on his scoring moves off the dribble in one on situations. He could also become a better rebounder on both ends. Defensively he will need to defend the dribble better but all these areas will improve as Harris adds strength.

Bottom Line:
Harris is a wing that can make shots. He is long and can shoot over smaller defenders with ease. He must add strength and continue to build his game but Harris can get on a role and score big numbers.

That's from ESPN.  Forgive me if I believe their scouting report and others I've read that say basically the same thing before I believe Heels20 who went to the NCProAm a few times.

- Johnson will play some with Brown.  It won't really matter who is technically the 1 or the 2, just like when Brown played with Harrow or Javi last year.

- As a senior, Horner was a very good shooter and a better rebounder than he had any business being.  de Thaey is more athletic (by a lot), a better rebounder, but probably not as good a shooter.  de Thaey is better going to the basket and finishing.  Horner was king of the pump fake.

- Gottfried has a track record.  Using that as a guide, I don't think it's really an assumption to say that he'll be better than Sid.  You are assuming that UNC won't suffer any setbacks with a first-year HC replacing Butch Davis.  That seems like much more of a leap.  You seem to be ignoring the elephant in the room, which is the COI meeting in October.

I think what it comes down to is your definition of "contender".  It's easier to be a contender in football than in basketball.  You're claiming UNC as a contender in football, and they haven't finished over .500 in a long time.

NCSU basketball doesn't have to be at a UNC or Duke level to be a contender.  That's fact.  And, the gap between NCSU and the rest of the league isn't that wide.  If you watched as many games as you claim, you'd know that a big part of NCSU's problem was lack of effort, which a new, better coach should help.

I honestly think the fact that you look at basketball from a UNC perspective is clouding your judgment.

I hope the Harris scouting report I showed you makes you reconsider your position on Lorenzo Brown.  Most shooting guards aren't pass-first guys. 


UNC lb's

Do you not know who Brown and Reddick are !?

I recall you saying a while back that you didnt watch UNC football unless they were playing state ?

Why are you even in this conversation ?


-1) Didn't realize that a rule change was required for something to be a fluke and 2) Doug Rhoads was quoted as saying that the UNC bowl game had little to do with the rule change, as it was something that had been discussed for years.

-More excuses.  Why am I not surprised?

-Zack Brown and Kevin Reddick are both proven linebackers.  Stop talking out of your "lack of understanding."

-Smith was your leading scorer.  Leslie was your second leading scorer.  Do you think a complete reversal of what you were doing is going to lead to completely smooth sailing?  Just out of curiousity, what is your prediction for State basketball next season?  ACC record and finish.

-Never said he can't hit the 3.  Just saying that he's not a 3 point shooter.  CJ Leslie can hit the 3.  Do you consider him a perimeter guy?

-Johnson is good considering what State would have without him, but do you really think a back court of Johnson and Brown can overcome the lack of frontcourt on State's basketball team?  Flashbacks of Julius Hodge's "we gonna have the best backcourt in the nation" comment.

-Horner sucked.  If de Thaey sucks a little less, then State will need more from the frontcourt to surpass mediocrity.

-Happy to address this.  NEVER did I say that I didn't expect UNC to face setbacks.  Not once.  Furthermore, don't forget Gottfried's track record of blowing it.  Preseason top 10 team in '07-'08 that didn't even make the NIT?  There's a reason why State went after so many coaches before Gottfried.  And PLEASE pull the "but we didn't offer anyone else" comment.  I would love to acknowledge you for being that naive.

-My definition of contender is that you've got a shot in the month of November.  That requires two things.  1 is that it's mathematically possible for you to still have a shot at your division.  2 is that you've shown you can play at the level of all opponents in your conference.  It's funny because Carolina will lose close games and end up at .500, and you equate that to State getting blown out by middle-of-the-pack teams on their way to 5-11.

-So I should give your team credit because they didn't try hard?  What happened to no credit for self-inflicted problems?  State basketball has sucked the past 5 years, and that's why they had the dead worst record in the league over that period.  Maybe that can change, but why should I believe that the guys who didn't care last year will care this year?  Because they brought in a decent coach?

-Looking at it from a UNC perspective does not cloud my judgment.  State basketball has finished no better than 6-10 in the past 5 years, and placed no better than 10th in the league.  That is AWFUL.

-Your scouting report pretty much confirms what I said.  He can be a good college player eventually, but it's not going to happen overnight.  I love how you take what I said about him being able to hit the 3 but that not being his game, and say that's the opposite of that scouting report.  If you think he's a 3 point specialist, you are in for a very rude awakening.

- College football - 2011

- College football - 2011 rule changes :


ACC/Big South referees coordinator Doug Rhoads discussed some of the changes for football officials to deal with this year:


10-second runoff – This was a result of the UNC/Tennessee episode in the Music City Bowl. Now, in the final minute of a game, neither the offense nor defense can commit a foul while the clock is running without an extra stipulation: officials will run 10 seconds off the clock in those instances unless a team has a timeout to use.

- There were 14 players on UNC's team last year with 30 or more tackles.  By my count, 5 of them are gone, and I think all 5 are in the NFL (except Williams who is rehabbing for a year).  Included among them is Sturdivant, who was the best LB on the team and would have led the team in tackles if he'd played every game.  Reddick and Brown combined for 146 tackles, 7.5 TFL, and 1 sack in 26 games, Sturdivant and Carter combined 118 tackles,  12 TFL and 5.5 sacks in 19 games.  Average that out.  I'd be willing to bet that Brown and Reddick got lots of chances to make tackles because teams were running away from Sturdivant and Carter.  Will Herman Davidson step up when teams are running away from Brown and Reddick?  I'm not saying that Brown and Reddick aren't good, but LBs almost always lead the team in tackles.

- Horner didn't suck.  He wasn't all-ACC, and he wasn't very athletic, but he was a solid player at NCSU.  Especially in his JR and SR seasons.  The biggest problems that Horner's teams faced was that there was no production from the guards.

- Lack of effort results from poor coaching.  That isn't what I'd consider a self-inflicted problem.  Even if you wanted to consider it a self-inflicted problem, it was last year and was handled by firing the person responsible for it.  If Withers loses a player or two this year because of something from last year, I'll give him the same benefit of the doubt.  If Lowe was still the basketball coach, I'd be saying he has to find a way to get a 40 minute effort out of his team.

- The vast majority of State's conference losses were from 7-12 points.  That's not really "blowout" status.

- You said Harris was not a 3 point shooter.  The scouting report says he makes spot-up 3's and is a good shooter.  You say that's wrong because you watched 3 pickup games with little structure, little coaching, and widely varying levels of talent.  I will believe the scouting report.  You are not saying the same thing as the scouting report.

I don't expect him to be a 3 point specialist.  I expect him to be a 3 point threat.  If he is, he helps create space in the defense and creates opportunities for his teammates.  With just Wood as a shooter, and no other real threats, it's been easy for teams to guard NCSU.  The additions of Johnson (shooter), Harris (shooter) and de Thaey (threat to shoot) can't really hurt.  There is plenty of room for debate about how much they'll help, but they can't hurt.


As Gatr said, what you copied and pasted was an assumption from someone.

Herman Davidson no longer plays for Carolina.  Brown is faster than both Carter and Sturdivant and better against the pass.  Reddick is has two years of starting experience already and has shown he can play.  Your "guess" that teams avoided Sturdivant and Carter means little when you don't even know who is and isn't on the team.

Horner sucked.  If you think he was "solid," then State will need a line-up of superstars by your standards just to go 8-8.  By the way, what's your prediction for this year's team?

He's not a 3 point shooter.  CJ Leslie can hit the 3.  Do you consider him a 3 point shooter/threat.

Johnson will not start.  Harris will DEFINITELY not start because he's got to mature.  Not his fault, but just an adjustment to college.  Again, de Thaey will have to be a very good player from the start if he's going to make a considerable impact this year.  If he's so great, why was he not heavily recruited?  Because he came from overseas?  Because Gottfried has a unique eye for talent? Ha.

To say that lack of effort is not self-inflicted is one of the most ridiculous things I've ever read, and even more proof that you cannot make an unbiased observation.  That's one of the dumbest things I have ever read on here, and I hope it came from your lack of objectivity rather than what you actually believe.


There are a couple of other links to stories talking about UNC/UT being the driver of the rule change.  I really thought the other copy and paste (from the Shelby Star, where the reporter actually met with Doug Rhoads) would lead you to post a link to a Rhoads quote saying what you claim he said.  Not just another "Heels20 said it, so you better believe it" line.

- I googled a post-spring depth chart.  I think it was from Tarheel Times or something like that, and it looked like it was an official UNC football document.  It listed Herman Davidson as the 3rd starting LB.  While it's true that the fact that he is no longer there shows that I don't know everything about UNC football (I never claimed to), it seems like replacing a projected starter would rate as another problem instead of something to gloat about.

- Horner averaged 12 points and 5 boards as a senior.  That's solid in the ACC.  Period.

- You're really arguing semantics with Harris, and I don't understand why.  I'm not claiming he's Wayne Ellington or Scott Wood from 3, I'm just saying that you can't leave him open.  I wouldn't guard CJL from there until he's made 1...maybe 2. 

- de Thaey is 20 years old.  He's more mature and should be more ready to play than a lot of freshmen.  Again, I'm not claiming he's going to be a lottery pick.  He has a good face-up offensive game and he rebounds.  Those are two good qualities.  He has done well in high-level international competition, which is probably better than most HS basketball. 

- Did you not read the rest of that?  The coach who would have been responsible for the lack of effort no longer has his job.  I don't think lack of effort is 100% attributable to the players, and I think sometimes Sid had the guys trying to do so many things that the apparent lack of effort was just confusion.  I think that Gottfried is going to allow a liitle more freedom.  I don't think the players consciously thought they would just go through the motions, and I don't think that Sid tried to make them play at 60%.  That would be self-inflicted.  John Blake didn't accidentally work for an agent.  Marvin Austin didn't accidentally take illegal benefits.  Michael McAdoo didn't accidentally email the tutor and ask for illegal help (he did, however, accidentally admit to all of it in his NCAA interview).

- My feeling is that NCSU didn't have 5-11 talent last season.  I think that Sid coached the team to 5-11.  That's the difference in our approaches.  You look at the record, while I look at how they got there.  They blew a huge lead at Clemson....I chalk that up to poor coaching.  NCSU won't have a ton of scoring options (meaning guys you run plays for) in the low post.  That is less of an issue for me because the coach likes the high post.  Sendek did OK in the ACC, and he played with a 6'6" center for a few years and almost never really featured a low post player.  I think the players will be in better shape because they are now being monitored more closely.  Under Sid, players were given a lot of freedom and some slacked off.

- I think NCSU is going to be at least 9-7 in the ACC and be a bubble team.  I remembered I forgot to answer that earlier.


Gotta love ACCNOW. Where else can a posting about a new head coach hiring get over 100 comments and morph into a heated discussion about college basketball. Some would consider this a problem. Not me. I like it, because I got no one to argue with or even discuss ACC Sports up here. So keep it coming guys.

Regarding 9-7, if State can achieve that record in the ACC this year, I will be doing backflips on Central Square in Downtown Youngstown. The inevitable trip to the emergency room afterwards will be well worth it. I do believe that, in Dan, we have found that rarest of commodities, a Pack fan more optimistic than me. While I am nowhere near ready to predict a winning record for State this year, it is not beyond the realm of possibility.

Why do I think that (besides my inherent proclivity toward optimism)? Because Mark Gottfried may be the perfect coach for the Wolfpack at this moment. Where some see a flawed individual, I see a guy who had decent success at a young age, but made some mistakes that took their toll and interrupted his coaching career. So, he took some time off from coaching and stayed close to the game as an announcer, observing some of the best coaches in the game today. He has now returned to coaching with new energy and enhanced knowledge, ready to move forward in a fresh setting. The old cliche is nonetheless true: everybody fails at one time or another, it is how you respond to failure that matters.

Gottfried takes over a team that can only be considered a failure last year. While some key players have been lost, but the cupboard is far from bare. It was obvious to anyone watching that the players were totally broken by the end of last season. Those who remain should be very receptive to the new and energetic approach Gottfried has brought so far. They can leave the past behind and move on with a guy who knows what it is like to fall down, pick himself back up and move ahead. After last year's debacle, there is no room for any ego or attitude to be displayed by a returning player. Any player who didn't get that memo should be dispatched, quickly and forcefully (that warning is for you, CJ Leslie).

I am looking forward to the upcoming basketball season as well as the football season. There are a lot of questions to still be answered, but I like the direction both programs are heading in.

No argument there

No blind and bold predictions.  No assumptions.  Just cautiously stating the possibilities.  Nothing wrong with that.  Not that my words mean anything, but I commend that type of approach.

Despite how many guys State missed on before they picked up Gottfried, I think they found the best guy willing to take the job.  He can be viewed a few different ways.  He's an analyst who on paper has a résumé similar to that of Herb Sendek.  You could make the argument that Sendek has the more successful background because he had his success in a much better conference, or you can say that Gottfried has the more successful background because Sendek had the advantage of recruiting in an area where there was better talent and from a program that had a better history than Alabama.

It's indisputable that Gottfried has a top 5  résumé  of all ACC coaches, and you could make an argument that he has the 3rd best behind K and Roy.  He's also done an excellent job of going after in-state recruits and trying to find the Chris Pauls out there who choose to be different and not take the UNC route.  That is by far the most important thing he can do at this time of year because once he gets those first few guys, he could suddenly find himself recruiting against Roy Williams for every #1 player in the state of North Carolina.  Along the way, he can pick up players like Tyler Lewis (actually a Sidney Lowe commitment) who may not be future lottery picks, but are still very good players.

One major thing that Gottfried has going against him is the past 20 years.  State basketball hasn't won a conference championship of any kind since 1989, and hasn't won the ACC tournament since 1987.  For about 15 years, the fan base has been generally apathetic.  As long as NC State basketball is associated with this apathy, the program will not be successful.  While Gottfried did find some success in his previous two head coaching stops, he has not yet proven to be that dynamic figure that is going to change that culture.  Does he have the potential to change it?  I listed all of the positives above.  But there is definitely work to do, and that starts on the recruiting trail this summer, and on the court this season.  NC State won't be the best team in the ACC this season, but if Gottfried can make them become the most exciting and hard-working, it will go a long way in future success of the program. I get it. It's OK I get it.

It's OK to be optimistic about NCSU basketball as long as we speak in generalities.  But, if we give the specific reasons behind our arrival at those general conclusions we don't know what we're talking about.  In order to believe what he believes, JPD has to feel about the same way as I do about most things as far as last year was concerned.  You saw a team that had Tracy Smith as its best player and is going to suffer from losing him.  I saw a team (and I suspect JPD did, too) that spent to much energy trying to get the ball to a guy who lost effectiveness due to injury instead of letting players go with the flow.  NCSU won't be spending a lot of time this year pounding the ball into the paint, and the team, as it's going to be constructed, will be better for it.

Right now, Gottfried is recruiting against UNC for TJ Warren and against Duke for Rodney Purvis.  He isn't trying to get the crumbs that UNC leaves behind.  He's going after the big pieces.  That entire paragraph about his recruiting methods is very condescending, and it makes me think that my earlier assessment was correct.  You are viewing everything from a UNC perspective and can't look at it from an NCSU view. 

The "last 20 years" can be a blessing and a curse.  Gottfried can point to what he did at Alabama and NBA players he has coached and tell guys that they can do the same thing at NCSU, which takes some of the sting off of the last 20 years.  At the same time, if he were to go 8-8 or 9-7, the fans would go nuts to support the program.  NCSU fans are starved for a winning basketball program.

If NCSU had won big for the last 20 years, there would actually be more pressure on Gottfried.  A couple of 9-7 years after 20 years of winning could put him on the hot seat.  Ask Matt Doherty how much job security you have when you take over a program that's been winning for decades AND get top recruiting classes.


You think that the argument you are making leads to a reasonable prediction of 9-7.  That's the major flaw I see in your argument.  Instead of saying that State "could" improve one thing, and "could" improve another thing, you jump to the conclusion of "we will do this, and we will do that, and it's reasonable to think that leads to a 9-7 season."  I think all 3 of us agree that last year's team underachieved.  I think all 3 of us agree that the cupboard is not bare.  The disconnect comes where you automatically assume that the best will occur, and that 9-7 is a reasonable prediction.

UNC has not yet offered TJ Warren, and while they are recruiting him and bringing him in on an official visit, I think it's premature to say that it's turned into a huge recruiting battle.  They are competing with Duke for Rodney Purvis, but it's almost as though you totally disregarded my previous comment that Gottfried is going after the Chris Pauls of North Carolina that choose to go a non-traditional route.  It was in more than one instance that I commended Gottfried for what he has done up until this point at NC State while on the recruiting trail.  Did you happen to miss those statements?

How do you draw condescension from my last post?  I'm stating reality.  If NC State was accustomed to getting the top talent in North Carolina, then they'd have picked up the likes of John Wall, Reggie Bullock, PJ Hairston, Ryan Kelly, Mason Plumlee, and Ian Miller.  They did pick up CJ Leslie, and remember all the excitement that came with that?  He wasn't even offered a scholarship by UNC or Duke, but it still was a huge in-state pick up.  If you step outside of the elite recruits, UNC and Duke aren't going to go after guys like Tyler Lewis and JT Terrell.  That's why NC State and Wake Forest would be smart to pick up those talented players.  Do you think that would be a dumb thing?

And think about it from a different standpoint.  If you're a recruit, and you've got Mark Gottfried in your living room, and then Mike Krzyzewksi, and then Roy Williams, are you seriously going to say that Gottfried isn't at a disadvantage just by name?  I'm not saying that he doesn't have anything to offer, but he is lightyears way from having a name as prestigious as either of the two guys from down the road.  You have lost your mind if you believe differently.

Gottfried can point to what he did at Bama (not much different than what Sendek did at State).  Sidney Lowe could point to his NBA experience and tell them he could make then ready for the NBA.  I don't necessarily think either one has an advantage by what they say.  Gottfried may work harder than Lowe on the recruiting trail, but your argument is weak about how he can talk about what he did at Alabama.  K or Roy could walk in and talk about national championships and lottery picks.  Do you really think a recruit would rather go to a school to go 9-7?  Sorry, but the last 20 years have hurt NC State.  The only positive way you can spin it is by saying that there's less pressure on Gottfried now than if he were inheriting a 10-6 program.

How can you possibly make the Matt Doherty connection?  In two years, he took a program that was going to the Final Four a handful of times per decade and led them to their worst season in school history.  And he wasn't even fired for that!  He lost his job because May, McCants and Manuel were all going to transfer if he remained the head coach.  So, yes, Gottfried would have more pressure on him if he was taking over a winning program, but he would also be inheriting a winning program which, in reality, he is not...

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About the blogger

Assistant sports editor Lorenzo Perez has bounced back-and-forth between The News & Observer's news and sports department several times since joining the newspaper in 1999. His latest assignment has him working with The N&O's ACC writers and online news. E-mail Lorenzo.