Friday, August 6, 2010

N.C. State camp: Tale of Two Wilsons

Fresh off spending the spring and summer playing baseball, N.C. State quarterback Russell Wilson still is adjusting to his first full-team drills since November.

Meanwhile, sophomore cornerback C.J. Wilson is emerging as a possible leader in a defensive backfield that struggled last season. Coach Tom O'Brien and defensive coordinator Mike Archer gave an update on training camp Friday evening.

Russell Wilson, who missed spring practice, isn't in midseason form yet.

"He hasn't been really sharp throwing the football, but he hasn't thrown it since November in team situations," O'Brien said. "He's got to get that back, and he's working hard at that."

O'Brien also complimented Wilson on his improved pocket presence. In the past, defenses have bottled up Wilson because of his habit of trying to escape pressure by running sideways.

"He got caught as people defended him and knew what he did," O'Brien said. "So he's got to be able to step up in the pocket and throw. You can take off and run stepping up if everything's covered. He's worked hard on that aspect."

C.J. Wilson returned an interception for a touchdown on the opening day of practice and continues to be a leader. He's only a sophomore, but he is one of N.C. State's most experienced players in the secondary.

"C.J. in particular has had some really good practices," Archer said. "He's shown leadership because he has played more than anybody else."

Archer said sophomore Terrell Manning has emerged as a starting outside linebacker; he has spent about a year running neck and neck with Dwayne Maddox. And on the defensive line, end David Akinniyi has impressed coaches early.

He is a transfer student who joined N.C. State for his senior season after Northeastern dropped football.

"David Akinniyi has had a great summer, and I think David has had a good camp," Archer said. "It's hard to tell without putting full pads on, but just based on retention, work habits, leadership, David has done well."

N.C. State's most highly regarded recruit, offensive tackle Robert Crisp from Raleigh's Athens Drive High, has started slowly. But O'Brien said that's natural and hasn't ruled out playing Crisp in the season opener.

Ken Tysiac

"His head is swimming," O'Brien said. "That's what I can tell you right now, but that's the way all freshman linemen are. The vocabulary is different, everything is different up front, and the speed of the game is a lot faster. He's swimming right now, but he's got four weeks to go [before the opener], so maybe he can make it. We don't know."


Anonymous said...

NEWSFLASH: "Russell Wilson, who missed spring practice, isn't in midseason form yet."
What, is your word count short? Whoever is at midseason form has peeked too early, way too early. Write something of substance or just don't write.

Anonymous said...

RW will be ready, glennon will make sure of that. also with RW behind the pack has the ability to win every game this season