2011 ACC Blogger Football Preview Pt. 2, – Wake Forest

Posted by Griffin Wong on July 18, 2011 under ACC Football | Comments are off for this article

2010 Record: 3-9 (1-7)

2011 Schedule – Picks

Sept. 3 – at Syracuse L 27-21

Sept. 10 – North Carolina State L 27-10

Sept. 17 – Gardner-Webb W 28-7

Oct. 1 – at Boston College L 20-7

Oct. 8 – Florida State L 48-7

Oct. 15 – Virginia Tech L 41-3

Oct. 22 – at Duke L 24-20

Oct. 29 – at North Carolina L 28-7

Nov. 5 – Notre Dame L 27-13

Nov. 12 – at Clemson L 31-21

Nov. 19 – Maryland L 28-6

Nov. 26 – Vanderbilt W 17-14

Key Conference Game: at Duke: This should be Wake Forest’s best opportunity to score a win in ACC play…

Toughest Game: Virginia Tech: While Florida State is more talented, I believe Virginia Tech will be the better team this season.

Offense:

Wake Forest was awful offensively in 2010, ranking 108th in the country in total offense. The Demon Deacons return starting quarterback Tanner Price and four offensive linemen, but don’t expect to see a huge improvement from 2010. Not only were Wake Forest’s offense bad last year, but the ACC was also nowhere near as difficult as it will be this year. I expect another long year for the Wake Forest offense.

Key Returner:

Josh Harris- Harris was productive at running back last season, rushing for 720 yards and 7 touchdowns despite not starting at the beginning of the season. Harris needs to take pressure off of the erratic Tanner Price.

Must Step Up:

Tanner Price- Price was bad last season, throwing 8 interceptions compared to 7 touchdowns. The good news is, the Wake Forest offense can’t be much worse than it was last year.

Defense:

Wake Forest was only slightly better defensively than they were offensively last season, ranking 101st in total defense and 110th in scoring defense. Senior linebacker Kyle Wilbur racked up 6 sacks last season, leading the team. The Demon Deacons also returns Freshman All-American Nikita Whitlock at defensive tackle.

Key Returner:

Nikita Whitlock- Whitlock was one of the few bright spots Wake Forest saw last season. Whitlock had 3 sacks and 10.5 tackles for loss.

Must Step Up:

Kenny Okoro- Okoro was All-ACC honorable mention in 2009 as a freshman, but wasn’t as good last year. Okoro needs to step up his play this year because the Demon Deacons’ secondary is going to be very lackluster.

Special Teams:

Junior Jimmy Newman was very solid at kicker last season, making 12 out of 13 field goals and making every single extra point attempt in 2010. It also appears Newman will handle punting duties. However, Newman sat out the entire spring with a hip injury. Head coach Jim Grobe does believe Newman will be ready for the season.

Key Returner:

Jimmy Newman- Newman was very reliable last season, so as long as he’s healthy the Demon Deacons should be alright in the special teams department.

Season Outlook: 2-10 (0-8)

It looks to be another long season for Wake Forest in 2011. The team may not necessarily be worse this year, but the competition in the ACC will be superior. Offensively I expect another dismal year, although I think the Demon Deacons have some pieces defensively. The point is, anyway you spin it, 2011 will be a rebuilding year for Wake Forest.


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