The Wolfpacker

July 2013 Football Preview

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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Meshing Abilities Football 2013 Blend Of Experienced And New Wide Receivers Should Bolster Wolfpack's Big-Play Potential N By Jacey Zembal C State will be combining some of the old with the new at wide receiver this season. The Wolfpack returns veterans Quintin Payton and Rashard Smith, both fifth-year seniors, and Bryan Underwood, a redshirt junior. The trio combined for 114 receptions, 1,737 receiving yards and 17 touchdown grabs last year. The trio will need to adjust to a new offense and quarterback, but they have proven to be playmakers. Redshirt sophomore Maurice Morgan and sophomore Charlie Hegedus also return, with the latter notching nine catches for 116 yards and a score a year ago. The two sophomores join five incoming freshman receivers, and a sixth newcomer — West Virginia transfer Travares Copeland — was cleared to play right away by the NCAA. He has three years of eligibility left. New NCSU wide receivers coach Frisman Jackson has an eclectic group to work with. "I have a chart in the receivers meeting room that lists some of the characteristics I'm looking for in an NC State receiver," Jackson Wide Receiver Roster Starters No.Name Yr. Ht. Wt. Hometown 88 Quintin Payton 5th-Sr. 6-4 211 Anderson, S.C. Payton started for the first time in his Wolfpack career last season, and he caught 51 passes for 798 yards and two touchdowns. 2 Rashard Smith 5th-Sr. 5-9 175 Dublin, Ga. The former cornerback and standout punt returner made 19 receptions for 315 yards and five touchdowns last year off the bench. 80 Bryan Underwood R-Jr. 5-9 177 University Heights, Ohio Underwood caught a touchdown pass in each of the first eight games last season. He hauled in 44 catches for 620 yards and 10 scores, and started four contests. Reserves No.Name Yr. Ht. Wt. Hometown 13 Bra'Lon Cherry Fr. 5-11 180 New Bern, N.C. The three-star prospect enrolled early for spring practices. He caught four passes for 42 yards and a score, and carried three times for three yards, in the Kay Yow Spring Game. 9 Tavares Copeland So. 5-11 178 Port St. Lucie, Fla. Copeland caught 10 passes for 55 yards in seven games last year for West Virginia as a true freshman. 84 Charlie Hegedus So. 6-2 200 Marietta, Ga. Hegedus was part of the rotation in his first year, catching nine passes for 116 yards and a touchdown in 13 games. 19 Maurice Morgan R-So. 6-2 226 LaGrange, N.C. The power receiver had 41 plays over seven games last year, and appeared in all 13 contests. He is seeking his first collegiate reception. Waiting In The Wings No.Name Yr. Ht. Wt. Hometown 3 Jonathan Alston Fr. 6-3 200 Bunn, N.C. The three-star prospect was ranked No. 24 overall in the state of North Carolina and No. 70 nationally as an athlete. 87 Marcellus Ballard R-So. 5-11 169 Wilson, N.C. Ballard is a walk-on who caught four passes for 30 yards in the Kay Yow Spring Game. 27 Dayton Campos R-Jr. 5-9 211 Jacksonville, N.C. Campos is a walk-on from eastern North Carolina. 28 Mychal Jones R-Jr. 5-8 178 Raleigh Jones is a walk-on from Raleigh. 87 Pharoah McKever Fr. 6-6 215 Tabor City, N.C. The versatile McKever played quarterback in high school, and also on defense. ranked him a three-star prospect. 85 Jumichael Ramos Fr. 6-3 190 Lovejoy, Ga. The former Georgia Tech commitment flipped to NC State. rated him as a three-star prospect. 29 Charlie Twitty R-Fr. 5-9 186 Raleigh Twitty is a walk-on who caught one pass for six yards in the Kay Yow Spring Game in April. 1 Marquez Valdes Fr. 6-3 201 St. Petersburg, Fla. The three-star prospect picked NC State over South Florida last January. said. "Obviously, being physical, and being mentally and physically tough. Confident because you have to play that position with confidence, or as Coach [Dave] Doeren likes to say, 'Swagger.' "You have to be able to catch the football, be explosive with the ball in your hands and be explosive off the line of scrimmage. The thing that is real key to me is the desire to block in the run game." Quick Facts Position Coach: Frisman Jackson (1st season) Returning Starter: Quintin Payton (13 career starts) Starter Lost: Tobais Palmer (19) FYI: Athlon ranked NC State's wide receivers/ tight ends unit No. 6 in the ACC, and Phil Steele's had the Wolfpack No. 8 in the league … Sporting News selected redshirt junior wide receiver Bryan Underwood as its "impact player" on the Wolfpack … Phil Steele's ranked Payton as the No. 49 overall wide receiver in the country … Phil Steele's projects NC State to pass for 304.8 yards and average 31.4 points per game this season … Hakeem Flowers left following his freshman year, and his recruiting classmate Xavier Griffin ended up at North Carolina A&T, resulting in five wide receivers being signed in NC State's 2013 class … Jonathan Alston of Bunn (N.C.) High played both wide receiver and linebacker for his prep team … Alston caught 38 passes for 783 yards and 12 touchdowns, rushed for 223 yards and three scores, and added 73 tackles, seven sacks and two interceptions his senior year … Bra'Lon Cherry caught 39 passes for 795 yards and nine touchdowns, and added 185 rushing yards and two scores … Cherry also returned kickoffs and punts at New Bern (N.C.) High, which went 15-0 and NCHSAA 4-A state title … Pharoah McKever played quarterback at Tabor City (N.C.) South Columbus High, and totaled almost 2,500 yards his senior year … The 6-6, 210-pound McKever also recorded 126 tackles and six interceptions his senior year … Jumichael Ramos, who flipped from Georgia Tech before National Signing Day, caught 44 passes for 842 yards and five touchdowns his senior year at Lovejoy (Ga.) High, and he also played basketball … Marquez Valdes, who briefly committed to Louisville, caught 24 passes for 444 yards and six scores his senior year at St. Petersburg (Fla.) Lakewood High … A sixth newcomer, Travares Copeland, left the Mountaineers for personal reasons with five games remaining last year … Copeland was an accomplished quarterback and return man at Port St. Lucie (Fla.) Treasure Coast High, and ranked him as the No. 28 athlete in the country in 2012. 64  ■  the wolfpacker 64-66.WRs.indd 64 7/2/13 9:32 AM

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