NC State announces quarterback change

North Carolina St. (3-2 straight up, 1-4 against the spread) head coach Dave Doeren announced this morning that MJ Morris will be the team’s starting quarterback moving forward. This move benches Brennan Armstrong, who started the Wolfpack’s first five games.

Armstrong and the NC St. offense struggled mightily in Friday’s 13-10 loss to Louisville as a 3.5-point home underdog. Armstrong completed 13-of-25 passes for 112 yards and zero touchdowns compared to two interceptions. He had 61 rushing yards on 17 attempts.

For the season, Armstrong has connected on 94-of-160 throws (58.8%) for 971 yards with a 5/6 TD-INT ratio. He has 286 rushing yards, two TDs and a 4.1 yards-per-carry average.

Armstrong, a sixth-year senior who played at Virginia for five seasons before transferring to NC St., is UVA’s all-time leader in career passing yards (9,034). He has a 63/41 career TD-INT ratio, 10,005 passing yards, 1,575 rushing yards and 24 TDs. Armstrong also had a 22-yard TD reception to his credit.

As a true freshman in 2022, Morris appeared in five games and started twice. He completed 52-of-86 passes (60.5%) for 648 yards with an excellent 7/1 TD-INT ratio. Morris also had 88 rushing yards and one TD.

Morris hasn’t played yet this season, as Doeren was actually hoping to redshirt him. But with the offense failing to score more than 24 points in any of its four games against FBS competition to date, Doeren decided it was time to make a move ahead of Saturday’s home game vs. Marshall.

After hosting the Thundering Herd, NC St. will play at Duke when the Blue Devils have had two weeks to prepare. Duke QB Riley Leonard is ‘doubtful’ for that game with an ankle injury sustained in the fourth quarter of Saturday’s home loss to Notre Dame.

As of late Monday afternoon, most books had NC St. installed as a 6.5-point home favorite vs. Marshall. The total was 45.5 points, and the Thundering Herd were +210 on the money line.

NC St. is 1-1 in ACC play, winning its conference opener 24-21 at Virginia in Week 4. DraftKings has the Wolfpack’s odds to win the ACC Championship Game at 80/1. Those are the eighth-shortest odds of the league’s 14 teams.