I graduated from CHASS in '08 so you guys wouldn't want me to criticize the game on a technical level. I enjoy it, it hasn't changed much presentation-wise, but the game play has improved. For a more technical review of the game IGN is a reliable source.
Being that this is the LAST NCAA FOOTBALL GAME EVER! I wanted to take a second and look at NC State in the game as a whole. In the past we took a look at State's overall ratings and also their top players. Now we can look at this force of nature in a fully...
Roster (players are rated as high as 99)
- Pete Thomas is placed as the starting QB and is rated an 82 along with Jacoby Brissett. Manny Stocker is much lower at a 77 and, as predicted, Brandon Mitchell's transfer came too late for his addition. For clarification 82 is not very good for a QB in these games.
- Shad Thornton is also an 82 while Creecy is an 81. The other RBs listed are all freshmen. WRs Payton & Underwood are at a reasonable 85/84 but we see a big drop off with Rashard Smith next at 78. Its best we not speak about how poorly rated our OL is with only 3 guys in the mid-to-low 80s.
- Our DL has numerous guys in the mid-80s though we also see huge drop offs in the 2-deep and further. Our LBs are all screwed up. Salahuddin is not listed as a MLB, Ryan Cheek his our highest listed LB, and Brandon Pittman absolutely sucks (73). The Secondary is highlighted by Dontae Johnson at an 84, a couple 80s from Burris/Byrd...but everyone else in the 70s.
- And Baumann...as good as advertised baby!
If there is a theme here, its that on O we are low on talent across the board. On D, our starters are competitive enough, but good Lord once you get past those guys the rest could barely start in the MAC. WELP turning Injuries OFF in Dynasty mode with the Wolfpack!
- We understand that the game cannot portray like likenesses of real coaches, but the three we have in the game are DD, Huxtable, and OH...Canada. Coaches in this game are given levels based on their past success and it gives them predetermined skills they can use with recruiting/game-plans/player improvement. Doeren is a 7, Huxtable and Canada 3s. For comparison Larry Fedora is 9 and Frank Beamer is a freaking 32. Looks like the Hokies have themselves a coach...think they should hold on to that guy...
- Now our playbook: Defense is the same 4-3 except this year we've added at "3-2-6" formation. Offense is exciting as it is a spread that is primarily based in the Pistol. If the game is any indication of our season, the plays we will run will be a lot more varied than TOB's or Chuck's playbooks (surprise!). Playing with Brissett (or a created Brandon Mitchell) gives you a ton of freedom in the offense that you have never had w/ NC State in NCAA. Just note "freedom in the offense" is no implication that the offense will be good.
- Playing with State on offense, one should focus on calling running plays out of the option and short passes on slant routs or in the flats. Passes down-field are a gamble as the accuracy of the QBs on this roster are in question. Defensively, your front 4 are solid, and your LBs can make plays sometimes...but that secondary will be eaten alive by good teams so if you don't get to the QB you are in big trouble. My suggestion is either call various blitzes, keep a spy on the QB or focus on a "bend-don't-break" style to avoid being constantly beat by the big play.
This is it! Unfortunately over the years as Dave Doeren turns us into a National Powerhouse only rivaled the likes of Alabama, EA Sports NCAA won't be around to have the Heisman winning Shadrach "#Education" Thornton on the cover. So lets enjoy our marginal team while it lasts or hey, its a video game tweak the settings, upgrade the players you can always cheat. I mean I'm sure U*NC gamers are doing it...its the Carolina Way...