No one enjoys piling on when things go wrong. But nonetheless, we’ve got to call out the ACC (plus Louisville) players who were counter-productive in helping their teams grab a victory this weekend. On the bright side for them, they can always get off this list next week. And for their sake, let’s hope they do.
Before the game, rumors that Brandon Mitchell could return to the starting quarterback job seemed to tantalize NC State fans. Once they found out that Pete Thomas would again be under center however, things took a predictable turn for the worst. Operating a highly inconsistent offense for the sixth straight week, Thomas failed to ever establish consistency against Syracuse in a home game his team was favored in by a touchdown. As has been the case all season, the junior passer failed to be all that accurate (17-of-35) while throwing yet another interception, making it eight on the year. Hurt mightily by the absence of Rashard Smith at wide receiver, he relied too heavily on Bryan Underwood and mostly had to ignore a running game that never seemed to establish itself against the Orange. At this point, the Wolfpack’s only hope this year is Mitchell returning, since it appears that Thomas just isn’t up to the task at all.
Pittsburgh Panthers offensive line (23 rushing yards, allowed 8 sacks)
NC State Wolfpack rushing defense (allowed 362 yards, 3 TD on the ground)