NC State had a 4th-and-2 situation around the Wake Forest 36 yard line on its first drive of the game, and rather than going for it, or giving Nik Sade an opportunity to make a long field goal clearly within his range, Dave Doeren had Pete Thomas fake an actual play and then punt the football. Which resulted in a touchback. Wake Forest was beyond its own 35 two plays later.
This is not some absurd call to fire Dave Doeren, because this is just the shit that, by and large, all football coaches do. It sucks, it flies against logic, and it's particularly frustrating when you are clearly up against a team with less talent than yours. It's just football life. It is what it is. (Sniff.)
I don't know why it is so difficult, at this stage, to understand that a Pete Thomas-led offense might struggle to score points and should take advantage of the opportunities it does have. But you know, that doesn't even matter. The 35-36 yard line area is a no-punt zone. I don't care if it's 4th-and-10. Either give a chance to your field goal kicker, who is off to a fantastic start, or roll the dice against a vulnerable defense.
That sequence, from the dumbass pooch to what Wake made out of it, set the tone for what was to come today, and that was more Winston-Salem voodoo magic. Mike Campanaro was wide open all over the place; hell, NC State even managed a horrible defensive breakdown in the final minute of the first half that led to a Wake touchdown. For some reason, State seems incapable of out-playing Wake Forest on the Deacs' home field, and I have absolutely no idea why. I've been to two games there and I've learned this much: never again. At least not until Jim Grobe is gone.
Freaking Presbyterian limited Wake to 5.1 yards per play. The Deacs averaged 5.4 against the Wolfpack. I dunno. I have no answers. I am frustrated and let's just have some beers.