I hope this is nobody. If you are missing somebody from a 5-7 team, then you aren’t gonna be very good this year either. But for the sake of argument, I am going to say Malik Jackson. He seems like he would be a perfect defensive end in the new 3-4 system being instituted by Sal Sunseri.
I also sincerely hope the biggest loss is NOT Justin Wilcox, or this is going to be a long season.
Most Important Returning Player
Tyler Bray. Is he the guy that torched Memphis, Cincinnati, Ole Miss and Kentucky in 2010? Is he the guy who struggled at times? He didn’t even play against ‘Bama or LSU last year, and he struggled with UGA and Florida. It’s put up or shut up time for Bray.
Highest Ranked Recruit
Cordarrelle Patterson – The only JUCO guy on this list. If he is as good as advertised than the UT passing attack could have three guys who are big fast and talented. 3! How many teams have three receivers north of 6’2” that can run jump and catch? IF he is as good as advertised even ‘Bama would have to take note.
Most Important Off-Season Acquisition.
Sal Sunseri and it’s not even close. If UT can run the 3-4 with some kind of efficiency, and UT can keep opponents under 24 points a game, it could/should be a successful season. However, historically (Bama in ’07, and UGA in ’09) struggled early and often in their first year in the 3-4. Derek Dooley can’t really afford to do that. From what I understand, the 3-4 puts immense pressure on the secondary, and much of the secondary’s time is spent in the nickel. Can some combination of Prentiss Waggner, Brian Randolph, Marsalis Teague, Eric Gordon, Brent Brewer, and LaDarrell McNeil make it work? That’s a huge question that nobody will be able to answer for a few weeks. Sal can save Dooley’s job, or he can cost him it. There’s not much in between.
North Carolina State: Go to the Georgia Dome in primetime, blow out the Wolfpack and the season could get off to a roaring start. Struggle or lose, and it could be the beginning of the end for Derek Dooley.
Is NC State going to be Cincinnati last year, or UCLA in 2008?
August 31 v NC St – W
September 8 v Georgia St – W
September 15 v Florida – W
September 22 v Akron – W
September 29 @ Georgia – W
October 13 @ Mississippi St – W
October 20 v Alabama – L
October 27 @ South Carolina – L
November 3 v Troy – W
November 10 v Missouri – W
November 17 @ Vanderbilt – W
November 24 v Kentucky –W
Final Record 10-2 (Yes I am a homer, deal with it)