Maurice Trowell enrolled at NC State in 2014, and some believed that he would be able to play right away for the Wolfpack. However, an injury forced him to miss virtually all of fall camp, and that time off the field led to him redshirting.
He tried to use that year to improve but believes he is still a work-in-progress.
"I have a lot to improve on," said Trowell. "Last year in my redshirt I learned a lot, but this year I'm better with the playbook. This year I have to go out and prove it.
"Everyday I work hard... work on my craft. I do everything I can everyday do be successful."
How has he been through the first week of camp?
"Trowell [was] a little bit fatigued I thought for a few days," said NC State head coach Dave Doeren on Sunday. "He had to learn how to push through a fall college practice. Last year he was hurt the entire training camp, so it was good to see him push through. He had his best practices back-to-back on practices four and five."
Trowell finished his prep career by leading Southern (NC) Durham High School to a 14-2 record and the 2013 NC 3AA state championship. In the state title game he totaled eight catches for 198 yards and two touchdowns to earn Outstanding Offensive Player of the Game honors. As a senior, he was superb, catching 93 passes for 1,760 yards and 19 touchdowns.
At 5-foot-11 and 191 pounds Trowell can play in the slot but also has the speed to work outside as a vertical threat. When you factor in his ability to return punts and kicks, it's easy to see that he can impact in a variety of ways.
"I want to help my team with whatever I can do," said Trowell. "On the field or off the field... just be a big asset.
"If they call my number I'll be ready to go."
NC State offensive coordinator Matt Canada recently praised Trowell's natural ability.
"He's maybe as talented as anybody we have," Canada said. "He's learning and getting better each day. He's understanding his role and understanding what we want him to do.
"He's doing a very good job."
"It makes me feel good," Trowell replied when told of Canada's comments. "I still stay humble. I work everyday and do what the coaches ask me to do."
Last year Trowell watched from the sidelines as the Pack finished 8-5. He believes the coaches have the team trending up and also notices the depth around him that could lead to more success.
"The coaches are moving us in the right direction," Trowell stated. "The teammates buy in, and we fight together to do what we can."
"We have a lot of depth on the team," he added. "Our coaches pitch always being ready so if one man goes down the next man steps and is prepared to play."
The season opener is less than three weeks away, and Trowell is definitely ready for the opportunity ahead of him.
"I'm excited about the season," he said. "Last year I redshirted, and this year I'll be on the field. I'm excited to make an impact on the team."