Study Guide: NC State

Over the next few weeks, EagleAction is creating quick-hit study guides for fans to get to know each of BC's opponents for the 2014 season. Today, we look at the North Carolina State Wolfpack.
TIME TBD, Oct 11, 2014; Raleigh, NC.
Coach: Dave Doeren, 2nd Season (3-9 record)
2012 record: 7-6 (4-4 ACC)
2013 record: 3-9 (0-8 ACC)
Home Record Last Season: 3-5
Home Record vs. ACC Last Season: 0-4
Last meeting vs. BC (2013): BC won 38-21
Returning starters (based on final 2013 depth chart): 7
The Big Names: The biggest name on the offensive side of the ball is Florida transfer Jacoby Brissett. Rivals had Brissett ranked as a four-star recruit and the 3rd best dual-threat quarterback in his class when he came to Florida. With the Gators, Brissett only appeared in a handful of games and had minimal success, but the NC State fans think that he can be a difference maker for them though.
The offensive player with the most historic production is running back Shadrach Thorton, the team's leading rusher last year. Thorton was suspended for the first game of last season and only had one carry in the next two games. However, the running back ended the season strong by leading the team in rushing in the final 9 games of the year.
Reason for BC to worry: NC State averaged 162 yards per game on the ground last year and that number should jump significantly this year. The 'Pack return four starters on the offensive line along with three running backs that have starting experience. When you throw running quarterback Jacoby Brissett into the mix, all of the sudden this looks like one of the best rushing teams in the league. Also, will the unit be looking for revenge against their pathetic performance last year?
Reason for BC to rest easy: If previous performance counts for anything, BC looks to be in good shape. The Eagles smothered the 'Pack's rushing attack by holding them to 35 yards rushing in last year's meeting.
Returning starters (based on final 2013 depth chart): 7
The Big Names: Art Norman leads a defensive line group which has three starters back from last year. Norman led the team with 4.5 sacks last season.
While not specifically labeled as "defense", NC State has some good special teams players. Kicker Niklas Sade was an impressive 19-of-23 on field goal attempts last year and perfect on 31 extra point attempts. Punter Wil Baumann averaged 42 yards per punt last year and had 19 downed inside the 20-yard line.
Reason for BC to worry: This observation isn't specific to the NC State defense, but in terms where this game lines up on the schedule. NC State coach Dave Doeren went 0-8 in the conference last year and his team starts with a home game against FSU and a road game against Clemson at the start of the conference schedule this year. With those two games likely to be losses there will be a ton of pressure on Doeren to pick up a home win against the Eagles, especially with a road trip to Louisville on deck the weekend after.
Reason for BC to rest easy: Doeren came to Raleigh with a reputation of being a great defensive mind, but it didn't show with his team's performance on the field last season. NC State allowed 30.2 yards per game, which was next-to-last in the conference. The 'Pack allowed 180 yards per game on the ground, also next-to-last in the ACC. The top three tacklers from last year are gone, so the Eagles are setup to have success on the ground against this team.