The Wolfpacker

November 2019

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 97 of 139

96 ■ THE WOLFPACKER N C State football redshirt sophomore quarterback Bailey Hockman has been waiting for the moment that he could call himself a college starter. The time officially arrived for the Syra- cuse game Oct. 10, which NC State won 16-10. Hockman played all but one series and completed 16 of 27 passes for 205 yards with no touchdowns and one inter- ception. In the first six contests this fall, he completed 57.1 percent of his throws for 460 yards with one score and two picks. "It's been a long journey," Hockman ad- mitted. "My story has been up and down. It's been a long time coming." Hockman originally made a very early commitment to Georgia when he was quar- terbacking McEachern High in Powder Springs, Ga. During a prolific prep career in which he threw for 9,013 yards and 94 touch- downs, both eighth-highest in the state's high school football history at the time, he faced a dilemma when Georgia fired head coach Mark Richt following the 2015 season. So Hockman opened up his recruitment again and then made his pledge to Florida State in the spring of his junior year. After he redshirted his freshman season, his head coach there, Jimbo Fisher, left FSU for the same position at Texas A&M. The following preseason, Hockman made the difficult decision to leave Tal- lahassee himself and go to Hutchinson (Kan.) Community College, where he did not play football last fall. "It was a difficult part of my life," Hock- man admitted about leaving FSU. "After that, nothing really affects me. If some- thing bad happens, whatever, let's keep going, keep working." That was the mentality Hockman brought to the quarterback position battle at NC State since he arrived in Raleigh last spring, and it's the same approach he hopes to keep now that he is the starter. "I was excited, just like anybody would be, but in the back of my mind it is just keep getting better every day," Hockman said. "Same approach — I'm the starter, I'm the backup, I'm third string, I'm play- ing receiver, it doesn't matter. I'm going to try to get better every day." At his best, Hockman thinks he can be a three-dimensional quarterback: a signal- caller that can throw, run, and keep plays alive with his legs and then throw. "I think that's a good thing, but I think you got to be smart about it," he added. "You got to stay within the system and do what the coaches are telling you to do." It is possible that redshirt freshman Devin Leary will continue to push Hock- man, and former starter Matthew McKay will also try to get back in the compe- tition. However, it's not in Hockman's nature to back down from a challenge, especially after his long wait to arrive at this moment. "I'd like to think I'm the toughest guy on the field," he said. "No hit could take me down, nobody saying anything could take me down. No matter what it is, I am just going to keep going, keep working." — Jacey Zembal Injury Bug Hits Wolfpack Hard Every team in college football will go through that snake-bitten year on the injury front. The 2019 season is turning out to be such the case for the Wolfpack. Consider this rundown of injuries sus- tained during the first half of the season: • Projected starting left tackle Tyrone Riley, a fifth-year senior, was lost for the season with a foot injury suffered during preseason camp. Riley is petitioning the NCAA for a sixth year of eligibility. • Starting wide receiver C.J. Riley, argu- ably NC State's most athletic receiver at 6-4, 211 pounds with a sub-4.5-second 40- yard dash, tore his ACL during the season- opening win over East Carolina and was lost for the season. It is the second time Riley has torn an ACL, and like Tyrone Riley, he is expected to petition for a sixth year of eligibility. • In that same game, senior corner and three-year starter Nick McCloud, one of NC State's team captains, suffered a knee WOLFPACK FOOTBALL Redshirt Sophomore Quarterback Bailey Hockman Emerges As Starter Hockman got the start in NC State's 16-10 win over Syracuse Oct. 10 and connected on 16 of 27 throws for 205 yards with no touchdowns and one interception. PHOTO BY KEN MARTIN 2019 NC State Schedule Date Opponent (TV) Result/Time (ET) Aug. 31 East Carolina W, 34-6 Sept. 7 Western Carolina W, 41-0 Sept. 14 at West Virginia L, 44-27 Sept. 21 Ball State W, 34-23 Sept. 28 at Florida State L, 31-13 Oct. 10 Syracuse W, 16-10 Oct. 19 at Boston College (RSN) Noon Nov. 2 at Wake Forest TBA Nov. 9 Clemson TBA Nov. 16 Louisville TBA Nov. 21 at Georgia Tech (ESPN) 8 p.m. Nov. 30 North Carolina TBA

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Wolfpacker - November 2019