Transfers help NC State's offensive depth

When NC State coach Dave Doeren first took a look at the roster he inherited, he saw only two quarterbacks on scholarship, neither of whom was a returning starter. There were only two running backs on scholarship, again no starters. And there were six returning receivers on scholarship.

“I knew I was going to need some transfers,” Doeren said.

NC State’s recruiting has been going well, but the staff simply can’t wait three years to start plugging holes.

At quarterback, Doeren brought in two transfers to help the position’s depth: Brandon Mitchell, who earned his degree from Arkansas and will spend his final season of eligibility in Raleigh, and former Florida quarterback Jacoby Brissett, who practiced with the team this spring but isn’t eligible to play this fall per NCAA transfer rules. Pete Thomas, a transfer from Colorado State, was brought in by the previous staff and sat out last season because of transfer rules. He enters summer camp as the frontrunner for the starting job, based on his performance this past spring.

Quarterback isn’t the only position that could get a boost from transfers.

Doeren also brought in receiver Travares Copeland from West Virginia, and offensive linemen Ali Kassem (ASA College), and Quinton Schooley (Butler). Copeland will be able to play this fall after receiving a waiver from the NCAA. He had 10 catches for 55 yards as a true freshman and started two games in 2012. Kassem will have two years of eligibility at NC State and can play either guard or tackle.

“They had lost some starting offensive linemen, and there were a few who were going to be leaving the program due to academics,” Doeren said. “So on the offensive side of the ball, I knew it was either play young guys, or try to get some older guys who could come in. We tried to do both. I don’t feel like we loaded our team with transfers. I was really happy we got Jacoby, but I didn’t look at taking him as a transfer as a way to solve this year’s problems.”

Maybe next year’s.