2010 Record: (1-7, 3-9 in ACC)
Head Coach: Jim Grobe (32-48 at Wake, 95-93-1 All-Time)
Last Bowl Game: 2008 EagleBank (beat Navy 29-19)
CFBZ Wake Forest Links
9/3: at Syracuse
9/10: NC State (2010 result: lost 38-3)
10/1: at Boston College (2010 result: lost 23-13)
10/8: FSU (2010 result: lost 31-0)
10/15: Virginia Tech (2010 result: lost 52-21)
10/22: at Duke (2010 result: won 54-48)
10/29: at UNC
11/5: Notre Dame
11/12: at Clemson (2010 result: lost 30-10)
11/19: Maryland (2010 result: lost 62-14)
11/26: Vanderbilt (2010 result: won 34-13)
2010 Offensive Statistics:
Scoring: 22.8 ppg (11th in ACC, 90th in Nation)
Rushing Yds/Game: 158.5 yds/game (5th in ACC, 53rd in Nation)
Passing Yds/Game: 143.8 yds/game (11th in ACC, 114th in Nation)
Total Yds/Game: 302.3 yds/game (11th in ACC, 108th in Nation)
2010 Defensive Statistics:
Scoring: 35.8 ppg (last in ACC, 110th in Nation)
Rushing Yds/Game: 191.42 yds/game (10th in ACC, 98th in Nation)
Passing Yds/Game: 238.2 yds/game (11th in ACC, 92nd in Nation)
Total Yds/Game: 429.6 yds/game (11th in ACC, 100th in Nation)
2010 Misc Stats:
Turnover Margin: +0.0 per game (7th in ACC, 56th in Nation)
Penalties: 45.3 yds/game (4th in ACC, 36th in Nation)
Top Returning Statistical Leaders:
Passing: QB Tanner Price, Soph (137 of 241 for 1349 yds, 7 PTD, 4RTD, 8 INT)
Rushing: RB Josh Harris, Soph (125 for 720 yds, 5.7 ypc, 7 TD)
Receiving: WR Chris Givens, Jr (35 rec for 514 yds, 4 TD)
Tackles: SS Cyhl Quarles, Sr (71)
Sacks: LB Kyle Wilber, Sr (6)
Interceptions: CB Kenny Okoro, Jr; S Daniel Mack, Soph (2)
What do you get when you combine the 90th ranked scoring offense with the 110th ranked scoring defense? If guessed 3-9 then you are correct. Many might be wondering if Jim Grobe's best Wake teams are behind him. When Grobe came to Wake in 2001 he finished with winning records in his first two years before losing three straight. Then in 2006 came the year to remember for Wake fans as the Demon Deacons posted an 11-3 record, won the ACC Championship Game and went on to play in the Orange Bowl. The next two years saw Grobe post a 17-9 combined record and take the Demon Deacons to two more bowl games. 2009 and 2010 were tough to swallow for Wake fans as the team combined to go 8-16. So what does 2011 hold for them? This is likely to be another rebuilding year for Grobe although Wake does return a bunch of starters and should be much more competitive this year. To get the scoop on the 2011 version of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons we headed over to the SB Nation blog Blogger So Dear and talked to Martin Rickman.
Jim Grobe posted three consecutive winning seasons from 2006 to 2008. Since then the Demon Deacons have gone 8-16. What has been missing these past two seasons?
Leadership, offensive line and any semblance of a defense. Since the Fresh Deacs graduated, those things have been lacking in spades. Wake has done a great job addressing the speed aspect of the game, but unfortunately, athleticism has not done enough to keep the team competitive against bigger and stronger opponents. And after losing anchors like Riley Skinner, Aaron Curry and Alphonso Smith among others, no players have truly stepped up to the challenge of motivating the team. When they would dig themselves a hole, there was no one there to pull them out of it.
Wake Forest returns 8 starters on offense and 8 starters on defense. For those that don't follow Wake Forest, who are the key players on this team?
It starts at QB—Tanner Price definitely took his lumps as a freshman, but is looking to bounce back in a big way. Keep an eye on Michael Campanaro as well—he’s a do-it-all offensive player that is a perfect compliment to the gamebreaking abilities of RB Josh Harris.
Defensively, no Deac made more strides than Kyle Wilber. He played out of his mind, and now that teams have to key on him, it should open the door for other players to shine as well.
The defense gave up 35 points per game last year (last in the ACC) and was in the bottom three in the league in both passing and rushing yardage allowed. Who needs to step up on the defensive side of the football for Wake to be successful this year?
The secondary. It was downright awful. Now, yes, the fact that the Deacs weren’t getting much pressure on the quarterback didn’t help, but Wake got beat early and often on pretty pedestrian routes, and when they were spread thin with extra help at nickel and dime, teams gashed them on the ground as well.
Who are some newcomers that can come in and make an impact this year for the Demon Deacons?
Zach Allen (3-Star LB out of Pahokee, Florida). He’s a beast, and should be in the rotation right away. It wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest if he was starting by the third game.
Looking at the schedule, what are the most important games this year?
The Notre Dame game is one of the biggest ever at BB&T, and it certainly will be a rowdy crowd. But honestly, any winnable game is important. The Deacs aren’t equipped to compete with a team like VT this year, so to be bowl eligible, they need to beat the teams they should beat or have a good chance against. Syracuse is the perfect example, and they’re first on the list.
What is your gut feeling on the final record for the 2011 season and what makes the season successful in your eyes?
Six wins will be a successful season. And it’s the ceiling in my opinion. I can’t see Wake winning fewer than four, so I’ll split the difference and put them at 5-7, with wins being Syracuse, Gardner-Webb, Duke, Vanderbilt and one of N.C. State or Maryland.
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Next Preview: Duke
2011 Team Previews
Big East- Louisville