Linebacker is clearly a major point of emphasis for NC State heading into the heart of the recruiting season. While the Pack appears to be a major player with such well-known players as Chasman Davis from Port St. Lucie, Fla, Emanuel Cook from W Palm Beach and Matt Wright from Hampton, Va, they have apparently taken a keen interest in one LB a little closer to home.
Nate Irving has received little fanfare during the 2005 recruiting year but his name has seemingly surfaced more and more often recently with connections to NC State. At 6-3, 210 pounds, Irving ran a solid 4.59-second 40-yard dash at a Shrine Bowl combine earlier this year. He backed that up with a 4.32-second shuttle and a respectable 29-inch vertical leap.
So far this season, Irving has been a star for his undefeated Wallace-Rose Hill squad. He's helped lead the team to an impressive 8-0 record. Starring at both TE and LB, the senior standout has collected 98 tackles, two sacks and one interception on defense. On offense he's hauled in seven passes for better than 100 yards and one score.
While the season has gone extremely well for Irving thus far, it got even better this past week in a big way. He found out that he had been selected for the Shrine Bowl early in the week and then learned that NC State had offered a scholarship on Friday night.
Irving talked about his selection to the Shrine Bowl and offer from the Pack.
"I was real excited when I found out I had been picked for the Shrine Bowl," said Irving. "Actually, I found out when I read it on my computer. That's big for me because it gives me a chance to go out and show what I can do against some of the best players.
"As for the offer from NC State, my coach told me about that Friday night. I'm being recruited by coach Dixon. We haven't had a chance to talk that much but when we have, I could tell he's a real cool coach."
Irving has listed NC State as his leader in the past and he made it clear he's still extremely interested in the Wolfpack.
"The main thing is I want to be a vet and they have one of the top veterinary programs in the country," said Irving. "So being able to do that would be good for me.
"I know State has struggled some this year but it hasn't really bothered me. I look at it like it gives me a chance to bring something to the field. I feel like I can bring some intensity to the team and help them step it up."
In addition to the Wolfpack, Irving reports an offer from East Carolina and says NC State, East Carolina, Clemson and UNC comprise his top four schools at the current time. He projects as an academic qualifier.