11/04/03: Coaches Corner Recap with Todd Stroud

This week's "Coaches Corner" at Playmaker's Sports Cafe featured Strength and Conditioning Coach Todd Stroud.

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

- Coach Stroud began by mentioning how exciting the game against Virginia was this Saturday. He said it ranks right up there with all the games he's been in or around, and compared the atmosphere to games at FSU, LSU, and Florida among other places. The atmosphere and fan support was unbelieveable.

- Philip Rivers has been as happy this week after a victory then he's been in a long time because of the importance to the team and that it was against one of the conferences best QBs, Matt Schaub.

- Philip entered NC State weighing 209 pounds and is currently playing around 230 pounds. Coach Stroud feels that he will test well for the NFL draft, with him currently benching 405 pounds and he has run a 4.92 40, a very respectable time for a quarterback of his stature. Scouts have been impressed with his quick feet in the pocket and along with his measurables Rivers should project well in the draft.

- This weekend shows how important a healthy TA McLendon is. The Wolfpack's a different team with #44 in the backfield.

- Coach Stroud was asked about the talent and youth along the defensive line and he mentioned how your defensive ends essentially determine how good your corners will be. Mario Williams started strong but then tailed off a bit mid-season when teams started to focus on him more. Now he's playing much better and will be a great player for NC State.

- James Martin is in the 228 pound range and that's light for a DE, but he's played very well at defensive end as a true freshman.

- Maurice Charles is in the 265 range and should eventually grow into a 285 pound defensive tackle for the Wolfpack. The staff hopes to have him at that playing weight for next season.

- "Tank" Tyler has already developed into a solid backup and as he continues to transform his body he will keep getting better and better.

- Coach Stroud also mentioned RS-Freshman John McCargo, stating how the standout Defensive Tackle is progressing into one of the top 2 or 3 DTs in the ACC. He's still young, but he's going to be a great one. When you put all these guys together and mix them with the talent at linebacker, the defensive front seven should be dominant next season.

- During the game, Coach Stroud's role is to handle special teams substitutions and sideline control.

- Offensive Tackle Derek Morris arrived to NC State weighing roughly 370 pounds and is now in the 328-332 range. He's very good in blocking drills and pass protection, and Derek just needs to continue maturing in his training regimen. With more playing time he's becoming even more mature and is a great athlete who is very powerful.

- NC State runs a 12-month training program that preaches proper nutrition and workout skills. The staff feels they run their players more than any team in the country, and it develops the speed and endurance needed to succeed.

- TA McLendon worked out harder this summer then he probably ever has in his life, now benching in the 425 pound range. He's a "high-motor" guy and those types often can get knicked up because they go so hard on every play.

- Richard Washington is listed as probable as of now for the Florida State game. He will be X-rayed again to make sure he's ready to go for the Seminoles, but as of now he's "probable."

- When asked how our seniors project in the NFL draft, Coach Stroud began with Philip Rivers. He thinks "P.R." will be one of the more scrutinized players in the draft because some teams may not like what they see while others will love him.

- Offensive Lineman Sean Locklear has been projected by some to be a second or third round selection. He'll likely test out better then any offensive guard in the country because of his athleticism. He's a great athlete.

- Where Jerricho Cotchery goes in the draft will depend solely on what type of 40-time he turns in. If he runs in the 4.5 range then he could conceiveably go very high in the draft.

- Another senior who's receiving heavy interest is long snapper Danny Young. Several teams have been in contact about him and Coach Stroud feels he will definitely get some looks.

- NFL teams have total access to the Wolfpack program during the month of October. Scouts can attend practices and watch as much film as they would like.

- When asked about the expected recovery of Moses and Hicks from ACL surgery, Coach Stroud stated that their prognosis is good. Some players can continue to play with a torn ACL, (he said that he did so while at FSU) noting that Jed Paulsen did so last season and Ricky Fowler is right now. It just depends on the strength of a players lower body and quads. However, overall the actual return from ACL injury is quicker then ever, with most recovering in the 6-9 month range.

Those were some of the key notes from Coach Todd Stroud's luncheon at Playmakers. Next week, Men's Head Basketball Coach Herb Sendek will be the featured guest at the "Coaches Corner."

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