Armstrong: Thanks to Yow, Boo Corrigan has both a good and tough job ahead at NC State

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Boo Corrigan's mission as Athletics Director at NC State is far different from the one that Debbie Yow inherited back in 2010. Yow took on a rescue operation. It's Corrigan's challenge, starting in May, to continue the rapid ascent of a program that's seen improvements almost across the board.

I can remember Yow patiently waiting with me outside for a live interview after her introductory news conference. The heat was pulsating up from the pavement below us, a fitting metaphor for the job that lay ahead.

Basketball had bottomed out, football was mired in relative mediocrity and the non-revenue sports beyond the juggernaut bass fishing club were as nondescript as you could imagine.

You want proof? In the final fall standings of the Learfield Director's Cup in 2009-10, NC State ranked 85th as an athletic department, trailing the likes of UNC-Wilmington and Appalachian State and not even in the same universe as Duke (18th) and UNC (5th). Fast forward to the final fall standings of 2018-19 and the Pack now sits 10th. (For comparison, always necessary around here, Duke was 7th and UNC 15th.)

NC State basketball and football both appear to be on a serious upswing and the Pack now has legit national power programs in wrestling and swimming, not to mention this year's women's basketball success - as of Wednesday the only undefeated men's or women's team in the country.

So that's the atmosphere that Corrigan inherits. Rather than nowhere to go but up, he's now charged with first maintaining, and then hopefully building on a level of excellence.

Yow's major hires could be in place for years to come or could move on because of their successes. Those are good problems if they occur.

Corrigan arrives with an abundance of pedigree. The youngest child of seven to former ACC Commissioner Gene Corrigan, Boo cut his admin teeth at Navy, Notre Dame, and Duke and then took over as boss at Army in 2011.

That's a resume stacked in both blue-blood experience and a serious sense of athletic pride.

I won't detail his accomplishments with the Black Knights, you can read those in the news release. What he does have is an endless supply of those ready to gush about his readiness for the State job.

His former boss Kevin White at Duke:

ACC Commissioner John Swofford:

Former employee at Duke, Mike Forman, now VP of Marketing with the Hurricanes:

Everything would indicate that Corrigan is a knockout hire for the Wolfpack. Starting in May, we'll find out if that becomes reality.

Here's a good video of Corrigan describing his mission in his own words. His job at Army is different than at NC State for obvious reasons, but his principles will largely remain the same.

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