10/28/03: Coaches Corner Recap with Dick Portee

This week's "Coaches Corner" at Playmaker's Sports Cafe featured Assistant Running Backs Coach Dick Portee.

Here are some of the key notes that Coach Portee discussed with the Wolfpack fans in attendance at Playmakers today.

- Coach Portee begin the luncheon by saying that the offense is playing at a high-level and scoring more points then in previous years.

- The NC State staff had some fears going in about playing Reggie Davis, with the main one being him putting the ball on the ground, a constant worry for the RB coach. With that being said, Reggie's very mature for his age and handled it all well. He did a good job and has a bright future.

- One of the hardest aspects of the position for young RBs to learn is pass-protection and assignments. The staff felt Davis did a good job against Duke in these areas and Philip Rivers was instrumental in reminding him of his assignments.

- The staff informed Davis last Monday that he would be the starter for Duke and naturally he was excited. He's a communications major and does a good job of staying level-headed. Coach Portee kept reflecting back on how mature Reggie really is.

- There has been no thought given to sitting TA McLendon out for the remainder of the season. TA's a competitor and he wants to be on the field whenever possible. He just had two minor knee scope surgeries and if he's not ready to play then he won't. He worked out a little on Monday evening, going through drills, and the staff hopes to see him get some time against Virginia this weekend.

- It's really been unfortunate for T.A. this season, battling injuries and all. Things just happen that way and it's the nature of the running back position to get banged up. Running backs take a lot of hits and things such as injuries just happen, according to Coach Portee.

- Philip Rivers has done a good job this year leading the offense, and by doing that the records he's going after will all fall. The staff's job is to win games and they will do whatever it takes to continue winning ballgames, either by running or passing.

- Josh Brown is getting better and Portee feels that he'll be fully ready to go for the Virginia game on Saturday.

- Greg Golden has a turf toe injury and they hope he's ready for Virginia. Golden will be listed as questionable this weekend, but Richard Washington's injury is a little more severe. He has two cracked ribs and that's a painful injury.

- Back to Reggie Davis, the freshman's a total football player according to Portee. He can catch the ball well out of the backfield, but the staff didn't need him to do that against Duke. He will only get better as he gains experience.

- Davis is a running back now, but at 225 pounds he may grow into a "moveable" player. The fullback position is not used much in State's system, and they don't recruit fullbacks, but Coach Portee hopes to keep Reggie at Running Back.

-Coach Al Groh will have his players ready to go on Saturday. Matt Schaub's a great quarterback who was the ACC Player of the Year last season. On offense they will run the ball and throw to the backs and Tight Ends a lot. Virginia plays a base 3-4 Defense and will present some challenges for the NC State offense, but the Wolfpack will be ready.

- The decision on Chris Colmer's sixth year will take place over a longer period of time and there is really no answer on it right now. Nothing has been determined.

- NC State fans may see some trick plays this weekend against Virginia. They are definitely in the playbook so anything is possible for the upcoming game.

Those were some of the key notes from Coach Dick Portee's luncheon at Playmakers. Next week, Strength and Conditioning Coach Todd Stroud will be the featured guest at the "Coaches Corner."

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