Mitchell: "I'm Very Excited"

Brandon Mitchell knew prior to his NC State visit that he would probably have a good trip because two familiar faces were in Raleigh that he had spent a lot of time with while at Arkansas.

Brandon Mitchell knew prior to his NC State visit that he would probably have a good trip because two familiar faces were in Raleigh that he had spent a lot of time with while at Arkansas.

The Wolfpack's first-year strength coach is Jason Veltkamp, and his top assistant is Brad Stewart. The duo previously worked together at Arkansas before heading to NC State, and Veltkamp was at the school all four years that Mitchell had been enrolled.

"I'd say that was about 50% of my decision right there," said Mitchell. "As players, we spend about 75% of our time with the strength coaches, so I'm very close to coach V. and coach Brad. I know exactly what they are thinking in terms of the strength program, their philosophy, so I knew it would be an easy transition.

"I've worked with coach Veltkamp for four years, and the great thing is coach Brad Stewart has always been the quarterback conditioning coach so I'm familiar with his habits and training techniques.

"I know how they both work, and they know how I work," Mitchell added. "I'll be able to step right in to the team's workouts and the quarterback workouts and not skip a beat."

After redshirting in 2009, Mitchell spent two seasons backing up talented quarterback Tyler Mitchell for the Razorbacks. He was set to do so again in 2012 before moving to wide receiver so he could get his athleticism on the field.

In three years, the 6-foot-4, 239-pounder appeared in 21 games with three starts. Mitchell caught 17 passes for 272 yards, completed 25-of-43 passes for 332 yards and two touchdowns, and rushed 23 times for 75 yards and two touchdowns.

He knew when Wilson graduated that he would move back to quarterback and compete for the starting job in the spring, but after the Arkansas coaching staff chose to not name a starter following spring practice, he decided to transfer.

Mitchell received interest right away from programs like NC State, Michigan, South Florida, UAB, Kent State, Louisiana Tech, Alabama A&M and Northwestern State, and the Wolfpack received the fist visit.

According to Mitchell, he was treating it like a business trip.

"I told the coaches that I really didn't even need a player host," he said. "Being a fifth-year senior, I really didn't need one. The biggest thing for me was building the chemistry with the head coach and offensive coordinator.

"I watched film with coach Doeren... he showed me what he wants to do with the offense, and then I spent some more time watching film with coach Canada. After that I hung out with coach V. and coach Brad... talking about their plan for the next couple of months, and I was also able to spend some time with the players."

What was NC State's recruiting pitch?

"They told me that they would offer me a fair chance and a legitimate shot to come in and win the starting quarterback job," said Mitchell. "They were telling me what kind of a place it was and how similar it is to Arkansas with the fans being so passionate.

"Also I could be a part of a team that doesn't want to wait to win. Coach Doeren doesn't want to wait a year or two to start rebuilding, they want to win now and he thinks they have all the pieces to do so."

Mitchell admitted that he felt right away NC State was where he wanted to go, but he didn't commit on the trip, choosing to wait a full week before giving the coaching staff his verbal commitment.

"It was a decision I didn't want to make right after the visit," he stated. "I just wanted to sleep on it a few days and make sure I had the same good feeling. I wanted it to sink in... just be sure.

"First I called my parents to make sure they were still all in, and they said if I still felt strongly about it to go after my dream. So I talked to a few more members of my family before calling coach Doeren to let him know I wanted to be a part of the Wolfpack family."

What was Doeren's reaction?

"I could tell he was very happy," said Mitchell. "He told me to finish up strong with school and he would see my on July 1st. He said he was ready for me to get there and go to work."

Mitchell is currently doing an internship and says he needs to complete two courses in the first summer session at Arkansas to receive his degree. Classes will be over June 28th, and he will then drive to Raleigh and start the second summer session at NC State on July 1st.

"I'm very excited," he said. "I've had a bunch of players texting me and things like that, telling me how excited they are to have me a part of the family. I've been talking with all the coaches, and they can't wait until I get down there.

"I have a lot going for me right now, as far as that situation. I really look forward to competing and hopefully winning that starting job and competing for an ACC championship."

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