When a national television audience last saw coach Dave Doeren, he was leading Northern Illinois to a conference championship before falling to Florida State in the Orange Bowl. Now Doeren jumps from the MAC to the Seminoles’ conference in the ACC, but his adaptation to the bigger stage is nothing compared to the fairly massive overhaul he brings to North Carolina State‘s offensive scheme.
Long gone are the days of statuesque pocket passer Mike Glennon — who is bound for the early portion of this April’s NFL draft — and here comes Doeren’s spread option that brought back-to-back MAC Offensive Player of the Year awards for 1,000-yard rusher quarterbacks Chandler Harnish and Jordan Lynch. This will constitute a major departure from the pro-style offense run under Tom O’Brien, and Doeren is guiding the Wolfpack through spring practice with this in mind.
“It’s slow going, you don’t want to put too much on them, because if you do that then you can’t really evaluate them because they are thinking too much,” Doeren said Tuesday, via FOX Sports. “At times, it’s tricky. You have to be smart about how much you put in because you know you need to get things in, too. But I feel like we’re at a point now where we’ve got enough in to evaluate and let our guys just play. We’re not there yet, but we’re pretty close.”
Currently Colorado State transfer Pete Thomas and Manny Stocker are in a two-man battle for the starting quaterback spot. The backfield of sophomore Shadrach Thornton and junior Tony Creecy will also factor hugely into an offense that should lean on the ground game.