NC State QB derby continues into summer

If this spring was any indication of what NC State’s depth chart will look like for the season opener against Louisiana Tech, then quarterback Pete Thomas is your guy. Thomas, who sat out last year per NCAA transfer rules, took the most reps with the first team this spring.

Infer what you will, but the new coaching staff isn’t quite ready to name Thomas the starter.

As far as offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Matt Canada is concerned, the job remains wide open heading into summer camp.

“Pete Thomas is certainly a guy who’s played a lot by playing at Colorado State,” Canada said. “Experience is certainly a leg-up for him. Manny [Stocker] played here last year and that gives him the advantage of playing in it, but neither one of them has played in our system with our terminology. Both of them had good moments this spring, and both of them have things to work on. That’s something we’ll take through and see how we come out of camp. We have a couple of freshmen coming in, and they’ll have a shot as well, so it’s kind of a work in progress.”

Thomas definitely has the edge in experience, as he was a two-year starter at Colorado State, where he threw for 4,269 yards and 18 touchdowns and completed 63.5 percent (414-652) of his passes. He also had an efficiency rating of 121.17 and three rushing touchdowns. He broke the CSU single-season record with a .647 completion percentage as a freshman. Stocker played in five career games as Mike Glennon’s backup last year. He ran three times for 32 yards against Wake Forest, but his career-high is 17 snaps against The Citadel.

“Pete’s more of a traditional drop-back quarterback,” Canada said. “Manny has more of an athletic skill set to do some different things. It all works into what we’re going to be, and we continue to say we’ll be whatever our players are. That’s what we spent the spring doing -- what can this quarterback do, what can this wideout do? Just trying to find out what each guy did well and we’ll spend a lot of time this summer deciding exactly what we focus on from there.”

And who is the focus at quarterback.