Welcome to a new and briefly-lived feature on the site, where I will argue with myself. See preseason installments here and here. (I still don't know which of me is right!) Our current topic: Dave Doeren, and the theoretical firing of Dave Doeren, noted area football coach. Take no more than five percent of any of these posts seriously ok thanks have a good one.
Steven. Steven, Steven, Steven. Why are you pooping this unicorn of lunacy onto the internet? What, is there a Gregg Doyel shortage I haven't heard about? Like there is now a vacuum in the oeuvre of post-idiot and you had to step on in there with the shit cannon blazing? (WHAT HAVE I SAID ABOUT USING THE SHIT CANNON, STEVEN.)
Let's start from the beginning, shall we. Tom O'Brien left Dave Doeren a team that had been gutted by indifference. Here are the composite recruiting class rankings for O'Brien's last four classes while NC State's head coach, beginning with 2012 and moving through 2009: 54th, 72nd, 35th, 49th. That's an average recruiting class ranking of 52.5. There are 64 power-conference football programs. There are not 64 power-conference football programs with NC State's combination of fan support and facilities; there aren't 52, either.
O'Brien found his share of solid players within those classes, but he also had some headlining kids never play a down for NC State. (Anyone remember Kenderius Whitehead?) That type of attrition will happen but when you are already working with a class ranked like 50th, it can make the situation a lot worse.
O'Brien also badly misjudged his succession plan for replacing Mike Glennon. Pete Thomas made sense in theory, and hey maybe he'd have been better in Dana Bible's system. But Thomas was never going to be anywhere close to Glennon in terms of production. Manny Stocker was never gonna be an FBS quarterback.
It's no wonder that Doeren scrambled immediately to find bodies at quarterback, bringing in multiple transfers. As he waited for Jacoby Brissett to become eligible, he basically had to hold a shit roster together with some chewing gum, 14 12 commandments, and a couple of legally-blind quarterbacks, one of whom could run, which is the kindest thing you could say about him. He had two legs and could use them for locomotion, per standard human practices.
Rebuilding in football simply cannot work like it can in basketball, for obvious, volume-related reasons. Upgrading at quarterback helps, but you cannot wash out an entire roster in a couple years. NC State's roster ranks 47th nationally in talent based on recruiting rankings, and incidentally, that's about where the team has ranked between 2014 and 2015 according to advanced performance-based statistics like F/+.
This was always going to be a decent team with inescapable flaws, and expectations to the contrary are not Dave Doeren's fault, they are yours.
It's two-and-a-half years into a coach's tenure, and nothing short of a miraculous recruiting run was going to turn this team around in that amount of time. Dave Doeren's staff has done an excellent job of turning the roster over and infusing better talent in a number of places, but there ain't any miracles here in RealityTown (er, DrunkTown?). Thing is, we're still working out way out of a hole. It was that bad.
Last year was all gravy in the way it ended. NC State will be bowling again this season. This is entirely okay. So stop embarrassing yourself on the internet, pal.