As a graduate transfer, Tabari Hines won't be around next year to help the NC State football team rebound from the 4-8 season that ended with Saturday's 41-10 loss to North Carolina at Carter-Finley Stadium.
But he can still be a vailable asset in the recovery effort.
Having helped Wake Forest bounce back from a similar disappointment in 2015 to a bowl game the following year, he's seen what it takes to get a team headed back in the right direction. And he's already begun counseling his returning teammates on the task they have ahead of them.
"I've been on a 3-9 team before and I know how the offseason is (like), how serious the coaches take it," Hines said after catching a team-leading seven passes for 89 yards and a touchdown in his final game with the Wolfpack.
"I just keep telling them guys, regardless of how the season ends, next year is going to be way better. You are going to be way more experienced. You are going to feel how you felt last year and you are just going to make sure you play with that passion every game, so I just think next year will be way better for these guys."
Hines said that like his 2015 Wake Forest team, this current Wolfpack squad has enough talent to turn things around.
It's just a matter of the younger players that were forced into action, many before they were ready because of injuries, learning, growing and improving from the experience they gained this season.
"Once adversity hit, it kind of shocked a lot of us because a lot of us are young," Hines said. "We're one of the teams that play the most freshmen in the country. They don't know because they've never played the college game, they don't know the stakes at hand."
Hines' point was vividly illustrated during the second half against UNC on Saturday.
After playing two solid quarters and leading 10-6 at the break, things quickly fell apart for the Wolfpack after the Tar Heels turned an interception of quarterback Devin Leary into a quick touchdown. Before State knew what hit it, its rival had scored 35 unanswered points to blow the game open.
It's a similar script to the one that did the Wolfpack in against Louisville two weeks earlier and got the team off to a disastrous start from which it couldn't recover in its next game at Georgia Tech.
"When adversity hits, we kind of look at it a different way," Hines said. "I just think over time, being a young team, that comes with experience -- learning that anything is possible and you can come back from any score. I think because they have got the experience towards the end of this year next year they will be better."
Hines finished his only season with the Wolfpack second on the team in receiving with 37 catches for 402 yards and two touchdowns.
Although he won't be around to contribute to the improvement he anticipates, he said he has no regrets about his decision to finish his college career at State. In addition to his three seasons at Wake Forest, Hines also spent a year at Oregon, where he played four games before suffering an injury and being redshirted.
"For me, starting here to when I first got here, I didn't know anything and coaches stayed with me,: he said. "It's just all about perseverance. That's a huge word I got from this school. I'm thankful I came here versus any other school that offered me. I'm thankful I came here, no matter what."