Class of 2008 Review: Defensive End

Pack Pride takes a look back at NC State's efforts at the defensive end spot for the recruiting class of 2008.

Defensive End


- Shea McKeen...6-5, 250 pounds...Nassau Community College...Princeton, NJ

How important was this spot in relation to other positions: Moderate...The Pack didn’t need massive numbers of defensive ends in this class but the number of prospects that were on the board at any one time strongly suggested that State would have preferred to land more than one.

Did the Pack meet their needs based on sheer numbers: C-

The Pack missed on: Everett Dawkins, Toshmon Stevens, Devin Taylor, Greg Scruggs, Leon Mackey, Quinton Coples,

How many may the Pack target for the class of 2009: 2-3

For much of the recruiting year, the defensive end board was NC State’s most impressive. The Pack was a major player for several very talented prospects but one after one, they fell off the board and ultimately, State would not sign a single high school defensive end in the class of 2008. This outcome seemed almost unthinkable last December when nearly a half dozen DE’s listed the Wolfpack as one of their top five schools. As such, expect State to hit this position hard in the class of 2009.

However, the news wasn’t all bad as the Pack did manage to snag Shea McKeen and his talents should give the defensive line an immediate infusion of talent.

Exiting high school McKeen was one of the nation’s more highly sought-after defensive ends. Rated a four-star prospect, he boasted over 20 scholarship offers and ultimately signed with South Carolina. However, off the field issues and a back injury would derail his career with the Gamecocks and McKeen would spend the next two years at Nassau Community College.

McKeen’s recruiting was much lower key the second time around. He narrowed his interest to just NC State, West Virginia and UNC. Of the three, McKeen would only officially visit NC State and he would make a commitment to the Wolfpack coaching staff while in Raleigh.

Under Tom O’Brien, NC State has made a transition to bigger defensive ends and McKeen certainly fits that mold perfectly. Perhaps the biggest compliment you can give him is the fact that he was talented enough to make the two-deep at South Carolina as a freshman. That is not an easy feat in the SEC. Now a couple of years older, there’s no reason to think that he won’t do the same at NC State.

As mentioned earlier, McKeen gives the Pack a sizable defensive end but make no mistake, this player can move. He has an impressive burst and runs like a tight end which allows him to pursue all over the field. When you combine that natural ability with an aggressive playing style and a couple of years of additional experience, McKeen has all the tools to become a major player along the Wolfpack defensive line in 2008.

Pack Pride Top Stories