Contingency plans are key in season openers
Posted August 30, 2013
Updated September 1, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — As the college football season prepares to enter hyperdrive Saturday with a full slate of games, college coaches around the Triangle and North Carolina will have to be ready for any number of circumstances. New quarterbacks and new coaches are a theme for North Carolina State and Duke.
According to Steve Logan, the first week of the season is about one thing: having a contingency plan.
“Invariably, midway through the first football game, we’d find out that some people couldn’t play. Suddenly, on a game day, the player couldn’t play. There were at least two of three surprises like that every year,” Logan said.
NC State vs Louisiana Tech - Saturday, 12:30 p.m., FOX 50 & Mix 101.5 FM
In his first game at the helm, new NC State head coach Dave Doeren will need to be prepared for plenty of surprises against Skip Holtz and the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs. According to Logan, the two-quarterback rotation the Wolfpack plan to use Saturday afternoon will help determine where the team is headed in 2013.
"They are going to play them both to find out who the guy is, because right now they don't know. New staff, new team, new scheme. Everything is new. Playing both quarterbacks will allow them to see who plays better on Saturday, to see who has the "it" factor," Logan said. "After the game, if they split the reps pretty well, they will know where they're headed in terms of the quarterback position."
Duke vs North Carolina Central - Saturday, 4 p.m., ESPN3
Another season opener, another team breaking in a new quarterback. Although David Cutcliffe and Co. know more about what they're getting with starter Anthony Boone, there will still be questions to answer in the season opener against North Carolina Central.
"I saw Anthony play last year, and he brings something different to the table. He has a good arm, and he gives you the zone read. He can also be really good in play-action," Logan said. "He will have to be a good player for Duke to continue to grow and have success this season."
As for the Eagles, who are replacing departed head coach Henry Frazier III, Logan sees a bumpy road ahead.
"Look back at North Carolina a couple of years ago. They removed Butch Davis, and the season was herky jerky. It wasn't the football team it could have been," he said. "They could be in for a major bump in the road Saturday against the Blue Devils."
East Carolina vs Old Sominion - Saturday, 7:30 p.m., FOX Sports
Entering his fourth season at the helm in Greenville, East Carolina head coach Ruffin McNeill could be ready to lead his most talented team. The Pirates return 16 starters, and they’ll open their season Saturday night against visiting Florida Atlantic.
“This the toughest situation to coach in, when you’re a decided favorite. I hated those games as a coach,” Logan said. “At ECU, we were traditionally the underdog and we played pretty well with a chip on our shoulder.” Logan: There will be a lot of discovery Saturday