Russell Wilson out of Tom O'Brien's mindset

Staff writerJuly 22, 2011 

— Tom O'Brien lamented the loss of N.C. State's top receivers and all-star linebacker Nate Irving during the Triangle Pigskin Kickoff on Thursday in Durham. The Wolfpack coach also expressed his concerns about the special teams.

One name O'Brien did not mention in his comments during the annual luncheon was Russell Wilson, the two-time All-ACC quarterback who recently transferred to Wisconsin.

"The biggest losses come at the wide receiver position," O'Brien said. "That's the biggest concern on offense."

As O'Brien continued with his remarks he said the loss of Irving, a third-round pick of the Denver Broncos, would be "tough."

Wilson led the ACC with 3,563 passing yards and 28 touchdown passes in 2010. State finished 9-4, with its first bowl win since 2005, and ranked No. 25 by the AP.

But when Wilson left to play minor league baseball for the Colorado Rockies and skipped spring practice, O'Brien turned the team over to junior Mike Glennon.

The school released Wilson from his scholarship in April, and two months later he transferred to Wisconsin. Wilson, who graduated in May 2010, is eligible to play right away for the Big Ten champion.

In a follow-up question by moderator Don Shea about his new quarterback, O'Brien praised Glennon's patience and made a point to say that Glennon had attended all of the offseason workouts and practices in his career.

"He's ready to go," O'Brien said. "He'll be fine for us."

jp.giglio@newsobserver.com or 919-829-8938

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