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Emezie, Leary, Knight move up career stats lists

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Bye week content! Come get your bye week content!

Clemson v NC State Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

We talked in the preseason about some of NC State’s current players places in the record books entering 2021, and updated after the second game when Emeka Emezie moved up on the receiving list. With this being a bye week, and with the team having completed five games, now is a great time to revisit the topic.

Passing

Devin Leary

  • Season Stats: 124-of-184 (67.4%), 1,283 yards, 12 TD, 2 INT, 145.3 QB Rating
  • On Pace For*: 322-of-478 (67.4%), 3,336 yards, 31 TD, 5 INT, 145.3 QB Rating
  • Career Stats: 291-of-504 (57.7%), 3,392 yards, 28 TD, 9 INT, 129.0 QB Rating

*Assuming 13 games played on the year

Leary has already moved himself up from #21 on the career passing yards list to #15, sitting 156 yards behind Jay Davis for #14. He’s 894 yards behind Dave Buckey for 10th place. If Leary keeps at his current pace, he would end the season at #7 on the list with 5,445 yards. That would leave him a little under 500 yards behind Terry Harvey for 6th, but still almost 2,000 yards behind Mike Glennon for 5th.

At his current pace, Leary would be within striking distance of Philip Rivers’ single-season pass completions record of 348, as well as Rivers’ single-season passing touchdown record of 34.

Leary’s current season QB Rating mark of 145.3 would be the 6th best mark in school history. If he maintains his current pace and hits those numbers, his career QB Rating would be raised to 135.0, which would move him ahead of Jacoby Brissett’s 133.4 for 4th place on the career list. Rivers (144.16), Ryan Finley (140.0), and Russell Wilson (135.47) hold the top three career spots. Rivers single-season record of 170.5 is nearly untouchable. To put it in perspective, taking Leary’s current numbers, if he had 26 TD passes instead of 12 and no other numbers changed, he would still be a hair shy of touching Rivers’ record.

Rushing

Zonovan Knight

  • Season Stats: 71 carries, 462 yards, 6.5 ypc, 3 TD
  • On Pace For: 185 carries, 1,201 yards, 6.5 ypc, 8 TD
  • Career Stats: 350 carries, 1,995 yards, 5.7 ypc, 18 TD

Ricky Person

  • Season Stats: 68 carries, 346 yards, 5.1 ypc, 4 TD
  • On Pace For: 177 carries, 900 yards, 5.1 ypc, 10 TD
  • Career Stats: 388 carries, 1,689 yards, 4.4 ypc, 13 TD

Knight has already moved up from 19th to 15th on the career rushing yards list, while Person has moved up from 27th to 17th, passing Gary Downs and Charlie Young in last week’s win over Louisiana Tech. Next up for Knight and just 36 yards away is Billy Ray Vickers. Knight is 534 yards shy of Willie Burden for 10th place. Currently sitting between Knight and Person is Vince Evans, who is 231 yards in front of Person.

At his current pace, Knight would finish 149 yards shy of Ted Brown’s single-season rushing yards record (granted, Brown’s record doesn’t include the 126 yards he put up in the 1978 Tangerine Bowl). Knight would also not be far off Dick Christy’s 7.1 yards/carry single-season record, although he’d need to average about 7.5 yards/carry for the rest of the season if he maintains his current pace of 14 carries/game if he were to come close. I don’t think any State fans - or Knight himself - would be upset with that.

Knight is currently tied with Scott Smith for 14th on the career rushing TDs list with 18. Person is currently tied for 25th on the list with Nyheim Hines, Charlie Bowers, and the aforementioned Evans. If Knight keeps on his current TD pace this year, he would finish the season inside the Top 10. If Person keeps on his pace, he’ll finish inside the Top 15. Neither player is anywhere on pace to tie or break the single-season rushing touchdown record of 18, currently held by Reggie Gallaspy and T.A. McLendon.

Receiving

Emeka Emezie

  • Season Stats: 32 receptions, 369 yards, 11.5 ypr, 1 TD
  • On Pace For: 83 receptions, 959 yards, 11.5 ypr, 3 TD
  • Career Stats: 201 receptions, 2,462 yards, 12.2 ypr, 14 TD

Thayer Thomas

  • Season Stats: 23 receptions, 190 yards, 8.3 ypr, 3 TD
  • On Pace For: 60 receptions, 494 yards, 8.3 ypr, 8 TD
  • Career Stats: 130 receptions, 1,436 yards, 11.0 ypr, 15 TD

Devin Carter

  • Season Stats: 16 receptions, 259 yards, 16.2 ypr, 2 TD
  • On Pace For: 42 receptions, 673 yards, 16.2 ypr, 5 TD
  • Career Stats: 78 receptions, 1,203 yards, 15.4 ypr, 4 TD

The big news here is that Emezie is just one reception shy of Jaylen Samuels career record of 202. Having already passed Kelvin Harmon and Torry Holt earlier in the season, Emezie passed Jerricho Cotchery for 2nd place in the win over Louisiana Tech. At his current pace, he won’t be far off Jakobi Meyers’ single-season receptions record of 92.

Thomas finds himself 11th on the career receptions list, having passed Owen Spencer, George Bryan, and Tramain Hall last week. He is just one reception behind Nasrallah Worthen for 10th place. At his current pace, he’ll finish the season in 7th place, a spot currently held by Eddie Goines.

Emezie also recently passed Goines and Spencer on the career receiving yards list and now sits in 4th, 203 yards behind Harmon for 3rd. He would need to exceed his current pace if he hopes to catch Jerricho Cotchery and his 3,119 yards that currently occupies 2nd. Holt’s career record is another 260 yards ahead of that.

Also on the career receiving yards list, Thomas has moved up from 27th to 21st, and is just 17 yards shy of T.J. Graham for 20th. His current pace would have him ending the season in 15th, a spot currently held by Don Buckey.

In terms of career receiving touchdowns, Thomas is currently tied with Koren Robinson and Spencer for 8th on the all-time list. He’s just two TDs shy of tying Goines and Bryan for 5th. Cotchery’s 2nd place 21 TDs is within reach, but Holt’s record of 31 is out of reach for this season, as is his single-season record of 16. One spot and one TD behind Thomas sits Emezie, currently tied with Worthen, Haywood Jeffires, and Bryan Underwood for 11th.

Defense

Isaiah Moore

  • Season Stats: 34 tackles, 15 solo, 4.0 TFL, 1.0 sacks
  • On Pace For: 88 tackles, 39 solo, 10.5 TFL, 2.5 sacks
  • Career Stats: 250 tackles, 116 solo, 26.5 TFL, 8.5 sacks

Moore is having an outstanding season and deserves an enormous amount of praise for not only his play, but also his leadership of a squad that has had to deal with several significant losses due to injury. At his current pace, he would finish the season 11 tackles shy of 15th on the all-time list.

Also at his current pace, Moore would end the season in a tie with Levar Fisher and Clayton White for 13th on the career Tackles For Loss (TFL) list. He would need 10.5 more TFL this season to tie Pat Thomas for 10th.

Kicking

Christopher Dunn

  • Season Stats: 5-of-9 FG (55.6%), 20-of-20 XP (100.0%), 35 points
  • On Pace For: 13-of-23 FG (55.6%), 52-of-52 XP (100.0%), 91 points
  • Career Stats: 61-of-76 FG (80.3%), 142-of-142 XP (100.0%), 325 points

Trenton Gill

  • Season Stats: 25 punts, 1,158 yards, 46.3 yards/punt, 8 inside the 20
  • On Pace For: 65 punts, 3,011 yards, 46.3 yards/punt, 21 inside the 20
  • Career Stats: 133 punts, 6,155 yards, 46.3 yards/punt, 42 inside the 20

So this is where it’s a little funky. Dunn has missed four kicks this year, including three in the win over Clemson. He had only missed 11 kicks in three seasons combined coming into the year. Will Dunn continue to hit at a 55.6% FG rate? Heck no. Will he hit enough through the remainder of the season to match the 88.5% FG rate he posted as a freshman in 2018? Probably not, but the truth is likely somewhere in between those two, and much closer to his career rate.

Dunn entered the season as the all-time leader in field goals made. He is now just three field goal attempts shy of Niklas Sade’s career record. He’s dropped from 4th to 6th in career field goal percentage, but he’s just 0.4% from regaining his position there. Catching Danny Deskevich’s 100.0% (12-of-12) record was impossible anyways, and Marc Primanti’s 93.9% and Steven Hauschka’s 88.9% marks were highly improbable coming into the year.

Gill is on pace to break the single season punting yards record of 2,968 yards set by John Deraney in 2006. Granted, he’s on pace to do so in 11 fewer punts (okay, technically at his current rate, he’d so so in 12 fewer punts). Gill has already moved up from 12th to 6th on the career punting yards list. Even at his current pace, he wouldn’t catch Johnny Evans 5th place record of 8,143 yards. Wil Baumann holds the career record with 10,868 punting yards.

The 65 punts Gill is on pace for would also tie for 10th on the single-season list with Baumann (2011), Calvin Warren (1981), Allen Hicks (1970), and Leslie Palmer (1947). Scott Earwood (1999) and Deraney (2006) are tied for the most punts in a single season with 76.

Gil already holds the single-season punting average record with the 47.6 yards/punt mark he posted in 2019. If he keeps up his current yards/punt rate, he’d also hold the 2nd highest mark in school history. Additionally, Gill isn’t hurting his career-leading mark of 46.3 yards/punt.