Can Things Get Any Worse for Tom O'Brien and NC State Wolfpack?

Chris LailContributor ISeptember 23, 2008

Yes, the Pack picked up a huge upset win (that's hard for me to say considering it was ECU) on Saturday. However, the injury bug keeps biting—and boy, does it bite hard.

On Monday, Tom O'Brien informed the media that Wolfpack starting quarterback Russell Wilson will be out Saturday against No. 13 (AP Poll) South Florida.

We will not find out until Thursday what the injury actually is.  According to a few posters on PackPride, the rumor is that Wilson suffered a separated shoulder in the second quarter of the ECU game.

If Wilson doesn't play Saturday against the Bulls, this will be his second start missed out of four games. 

On Saturday against ECU, it looked like the injury-plagued Pack had made a step forward, especially at the quarterback position.  Wilson played well, completing 21 of 31 for 210 yards with three touchdown passes.  He looked solid, making good decisions and escaping trouble against the Pirate defenders. 

With Wilson being out, the Wolfpack will have to depend on redshirt junior Harrison Beck to get the job done.  Beck has had an up and down career at NC State after transferring from Nebraska.  He's a strong-armed kid that can put pressure on the Bulls' secondary.  His poor decision-making could cost the Wolfpack.

Another starter was lost in the ECU game.  Nate Irving, the breakout linebacker, suffered an ankle injury.  He left the game and tried to return, but he wasn't the same Nate Irving we Pack fans had become accustomed to over the first three weeks.  Hopefully both Nate and Russell will be back on the field soon.

The Pack and Tom O'Brien have had a tough time with injuries this season.  The Wolfpack have now had injuries to 16 players in this short season and have had several season-ending injuries.  Hopefully the Pack can continue to field a team at this rate.