Many expect NC State to look at the junior college ranks, particularly along the defensive line, for immediate help heading into the 2009 season. The Pack went that route last year in securing defensive end Shea McKeen from Nassau CC and defensive tackle LeRoy Burgess from Georgia Military. State has another Georgia Military defensive lineman on the radar and appear to be keeping close tabs on his progress in 2008.
Originally from Hephzibah High School in Blythe, Georgia, defensive lineman T.J. Lynch came on as a solid contributor for Georgia Military in 2007 before a shoulder injury sidetracked his season. He was slowed again during fall camp this year but played solid in a win over Louisburg this past weekend. Lynch told Pack Pride he feels as though he’s now beginning to show exactly what he’s capable of.
“I had a slow start because of an ankle injury coming out of camp but it’s coming along pretty fine,” said Lynch. “I’m doing okay but I’m about to pick it up a little more every week. Today I had my first sack of the year and I had two tackles for loss so it’s starting to come along. We play a 3-5 here so I’m playing defensive end but I’ll play where ever they want me in college.”
At 6-4, 245 pounds, Lynch has a division one frame and moves well. On Saturday he was active in the Louisburg back field all day, showing the ability to beat the offensive tackle across from him as well as tracking plays down from behind. He’s hoping his production will impress college coaches as the season progresses. For now, there appears to be three main programs on the radar.
“Right now, I’m hearing from Louisville, Western Michigan and NC State,” he said. “State got involved with me back in the spring time. The coach said he liked me a lot and he was going to do a lot of work to get me up there but I’ve got to show it on the field. He said he’d vouch for me, all I got to do is make sure I take care of my job.”
Although still working to land his first scholarship offer, Lynch is hoping to change that with a solid sophomore campaign. He knows of the three schools he hopes to visit during the season with one school standing out above the rest. Lynch gave his thoughts on the NC State football program.
“They’re coming along,” he said. “The coaches have been saying a lot of good things to me and they’re a fired up coaching staff. They’ll coach you up good and I’m fired up about that.
“You know LeRoy B. (Burgess), he’s up there. Both Tobais (Palmer) and Roy (Mangram) have been telling me it’s a great place up there. I’m planning to visit NC State, Western Michigan and Louisville and those are my top three right now but NC State is on top.”