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Air Grobe? Demon Deacons Come to Pass

As we've discusses here earlier this week, Wake Forest has established most of its credentials this season with relentless defense and by not turning over the ball (the exception to the latter being the Navy game, the Deacons' only loss).

Somewhat overlooked in Wake's 4-1 start has been its inability to rush the football. Known for its misdirection offense that has typically kept the ball mostly on the ground, the Deacons this season rank 110th in the nation (and 11th in the ACC) in rushing yards with 99 per game. They've been able to overcome this deficiency by throwing the ball more with quarterback Riley Skinner, a topic Steve Yanda is going to examine in tomorrow's paper.

Meantime, here's the view from Winston-Salem on Wake's running woes, which have caused particular problems inside opponents' 20-yard line.

The problem for the Terrapins is they haven't been very good at stopping the run (71st nationally allowing 145 rushing yards per game), and the secondary has been vulnerable as well (95th, 249 yards per game).

Here's how Wake Forest has fared offensively the past three seasons compared to its performance against Maryland.

............................................Rush........Total
Year....Rush.........Total.......vs. Md......vs. Md......Result
2007...143.3.........340.38....178..........397..........Wake, 31-24
2006...149.93.......307.0......296..........421..........Wake, 38-24
2005...197.55.......358.82....111..........244..........Maryland, 22-12

Are you more concerned about Wake Forest beating Maryland on the ground or through the air?

By Matthew Rennie  |  October 15, 2008; 9:01 AM ET
Categories:  Football  
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Comments

IMO we have to worry about the ground because Cosh will worry about the air attack and play well off the ball leaving big holes in space once a runner penetrates the line.

Posted by: Paco in Ajijic | October 15, 2008 9:40 AM | Report abuse

I'm most worried about getting shut out for a 2nd straight game against a 'D' that's better than UVA's.

Posted by: Sam | October 15, 2008 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Definitely through the air. We made the MTSU and UVA scrub quarterbacks look like Heisman candidates!

Posted by: Fredneck | October 15, 2008 10:45 AM | Report abuse

I remember 2006 very well...Wake ran all over the Terps. Cosh needs to make serious adjustments, and play very aggressive, or its a long day for the Terps.

Posted by: UMDFAN | October 15, 2008 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Maryland has no pass rush = no pass defense

Prediction:

Wake Forest -- 34
Maryland -- 10

Maryland will finish with a 5-7 record.


Go Tar Heels !


Posted by: Gary | October 15, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Wake is going to win, if they have as good as a defense as they did against Clemson, and at least half of an offense as their defense. Remember last year?? Alphonso Smith - interception for a touchdown. Wake wins, 31-24 - last year. GO DEACS!

Posted by: Mr. Anonymous | October 17, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

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