RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – You don’t have to go into the whole “those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat it’’ spiel with North Carolina State quarterback Devin Leary. He knows. He’s the one repeatedly pushing rewind and play to watch it back himself.
“As soon as the season ended I’m watching different cut-ups of my interceptions that I’ve thrown, my sacks that I’ve taken, potential interceptions,” Leary said at the Atlantic Coastal Conference Kickoff.
Given the fact that last season Leary had the best interception avoidance mark in school history with a .23, one would think the content for those film sessions would be sparse.
I mean how many times can you really sit there and watch a mere five interceptions?
The answer: a lot.
“I watch film every single day,” Leary said. “If I’m having a good day I watch it, if I’m having a bad day I watch. It keeps me humble, it keeps me grounded.”
He’s mostly looking for ways that he and N.C. State could be better.
Like his coach, Leary has spent the offseason being eaten up by the “one play” that didn’t go right for the Wolfpack last season.
His daily film sessions are spent trying to establish those kinds of plays and then bringing them up to the guys in the locker room so history won’t repeat this season.
“It’s not just understanding ‘oh we just got a penalty’,” Leary said. “Why did we get that penalty? Where did your technique go wrong? Why didn’t you comply with this coverage or formation? Having everyone understand how critical those wounds are and emphasizing it in the offseason shows that those small details are what makes us lose those one-play games.”
There were just three ‘one play’ games last season for N.C. State.
The 24-10 loss to Mississippi State in week two, the 31-30 loss to Miami and the 45-42 loss to would-be Atlantic Division Champion Wake Forest.
Against the Demon Deacons, Leary had two interceptions, his only multi-turnover game of the season. Against the Hurricanes, he completed a season-low 57.1 percent of his passes. He has watched both of those games no less than twenty times since they unfolded last fall, he said.
“It doesn’t sit well with me,” Leary said. “I know how many self-inflicted wounds we had in those games that cost us those games. You heard coach Doeren talk about ‘We’re just one play away from winning games’ and that was the case for us a couple (of) times last season. That’s my biggest critique looking at where we could have gone better and eliminating those.”