NC State Coaching Staff 2023

NC State head coach Dave Doeren has an experienced staff comprised of multiple former coordinator. Can they take NC State to the next level?

Few programs have been as consistent as the NC State Wolfpack over the last decade. However, Wolfpack fans are ready for more. In a wide-open ACC, is this the year NC State makes a run at a conference title?

NC State Coaching Staff

Head Coach, Dave Doeren

The Wolfpack are hardly what you could call a historical power, but in the last 10 years, only Clemson has more winning seasons than the Wolfpack among ACC teams. Since moving to Raleigh from Northern Illinois, Doeren has led the Wolfpack to eight 7-win seasons and 25 wins in the last three.

He’s been able to keep the rest of the staff relatively consistent during his tenure, and the Wolfpack boast one of the most experienced staffs in the ACC.

Doeren is a defensive coach by trade, coaching position groups at all three levels of the defense during stops at Drake, USC, Montana, Kansas, and Wisconsin. When he moved to Wisconsin in 2006, Doeren took over duties as the recruiting coordinator, learning skills that have translated to strong recruiting classes at NC State.

Doeren’s teams are typically disciplined, tough, and well-coached, and they very rarely have extreme highs or lows.

The Wolfpack have typically finished in the middle of the conference’s recruiting rankings, but Doeren and staff have hit on several under-the-radar recruits who developed into All-Conference players.

MORE: ACC QB Rankings, 2023

Offensive Coordinator/Inside WRs/TEs, Robert Anae

Anae comes to NC State looking to revitalize a stale offensive attack that struggled after starting quarterback Devin Leary went down a year ago. Anae has more than 10 years of experience as an offensive coordinator in the highest levels of college football, most recently at Virginia under Bronco Mendenhall and at Syracuse last season.

The key for Anae, an offensive line coach by trade, will be getting transfer Brennan Armstrong back to his 2021 level of play. Under Anae at Virginia, Armstrong threw for over 6,800 yards and 51 touchdowns, including a school-record 4,449 yards and 31 scores during his redshirt junior year in 2021. Once Anae moved to Syracuse last year, however, Armstrong regressed, throwing just seven touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 10 starts.

At Syracuse, Anae turned career 55 percent passer Garrett Schrader into an All-Conference contender. Schrader put up 3,100 total yards and 26 touchdowns. If Anae can once again secure high-level quarterback play from Armstrong, the NC State offense could be one of the best it has had.

Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers, Tony Gibson

Gibson is entering his fifth season at NC State and fourth with the linebackers. His 3-4 defenses always play fast and aggressive, marked by good discipline and plenty of huge hits. This particular group will have to prove it can be productive without All-ACC performers Drake Thomas and Tanner Ingle.

However, NC State returns linebacker Payton Wilson, who was injured for most of 2021 but bounced back with a strong 2022 campaign. He’ll anchor a young but talented defense.

Before leading the Wolfpack, Gibson was the defensive coordinator at West Virginia, following stints at Arizona, Pittsburgh, and Michigan. He has extensive experience coaching both linebackers and defensive backs.

Special Teams Coordinator/Running Backs, Todd Goebbel

Goebbel is in his fifth year with NC State, having recently made the transition from tight ends to running backs in addition to his duties as the special teams coordinator. Goebbel will have to replace all-time leading scorer Christopher Dunn this season at kicker but returns punter Caden Noonkester and returner Julian Gray.

At running back, both Jordan Houston and Michael Allen have plenty of experience. The NC State offense typically rotates multiple backs, so the emergence of a third runner will be key.

Before Goebbel landed at NC State, he spent time at Marshall in a variety of roles, including special teams and offensive coordinator.

Assistant Head Coach/Wide Receivers, Joker Phillips

Former Kentucky head coach and wide receiver guru Joker Phillips is entering his third season with the Wolfpack. Overall, Phillips brings 27 years of wide receiver coaching experience and multiple years as an assistant head coach and head coach.

The Wolfpack will have to replace their top two pass catchers from a year ago but return Keyon Lesane and Porter Rooks. Look for sophomore Terrell Timmons to have a breakout season in the type of role Devin Carter had last season.

Phillips is one of the more well-respected coaches in the country, and his recruiting classes in 2024 and 2025 are looking strong at the position.

Quarterbacks, Kurt Roper

Roper has years of experience leading offenses in and around the Southeast and is one of three former offensive coordinators on NC State’s staff. After starting his career as a graduate assistant at Tennessee, Roper spent time coaching quarterbacks and running backs at three different SEC schools before taking over as Duke’s offensive coordinator in 2008.

Roper has had stints at Florida and South Carolina as the primary play-caller and has been at NC State since 2019, coaching quarterbacks and running backs at various points. A strong recruiter, Roper will get to work with Armstrong this season.

Offensive Line, Garett Tujague

After a long stint with College of the Canyons from 1998-2012, first as an offensive line coach, then as a head coach, Tujague returned to his alma mater (BYU). He followed Bronco Mendenhall to Virginia and stayed last year after Mendenhall retired. Anae has brought him to NC State to coach the offensive line in front of Armstrong and the running backs.

Tujague is considered an excellent teacher of the game and has experience as the primary game planner. His lines at Virginia were known for doing more with less, and he was there for some of the best offenses in school history.

MORE: ACC Season Predictions: Game-by-Game Analysis, Marquee Matchups, and More Odds for 2023

Defensive Line, Charley Wiles

Wiles enters his fourth year at NC State after a long tenure with his former coach Frank Beamer at Virginia Tech. Wiles played for Beamer at Murray State before returning to his alma mater in 1990.

In 1996, Wiles started a 24-year tenure at Virginia Tech before moving to NC State in 2020. The defensive line—specifically the interior—is one of the strengths of this entire Wolfpack team, led by All-ACC nose tackle CJ Clark.

Nickels, Freddie Aughtry-Lindsay

Aughtry-Lindsay was a standout linebacker for the Wolfpack in the early 2000s and enters his seventh season as a coach with NC State across two separate stints. He returned to NC State in 2020 after a year as the defensive coordinator of NC Central’s 17th-ranked defense.

This season, graduate transfer Robert Kennedy looks like he’ll make the move to Nickel for the Wolfpack. The senior started 11 games at safety for Old Dominion last year, notching 52 tackles.

Cornerbacks, Brian Mitchell

Mitchell brings extensive experience at a variety of Power Five schools. Entering his fourth season at NC State, Mitchell has coached at Virginia Tech, West Virginia, East Carolina, Texas Tech, and BYU, having documented success at each. He called defensive plays at East Carolina and has had a top 10 passing defense at least once at each stop.

Safeties, Joe DeForest

DeForest is yet another coach with former play-calling experience and has been both a defensive coordinator and a special teams coordinator at multiple Power Five schools. DeForest worked closely with Mitchell at West Virginia, and the two of them have made a strong tandem at NC State.

The Wolfpack will have to reload at safety this year after losing Cyrus Fagan and Tanner Ingle. Watch for Devan Boykin to break out this season.