The Wake Forest Demon Deacons are 2-5 and coming off a very disappointing 30-7 loss to Syracuse. On Saturday at 3:30 p.m. they will attempt to get their first win since September 20th when they take on the Boston College Eagles (4-3), who is coming off a 17-13 loss against Clemson. How do the dudes in #therivalry match up?
Boston College Offense
Boston College's offense is led by dual-threat quarterback Tyler Murphy, who is a transfer from Florida. While his passing has been far from elite this season (54% completion rate, 5 touchdowns, 6 interceptions), he has been exceptional on the ground. Murphy is averaging 7.7 yards/carry this season and has 8 rushing touchdowns. Against Southern California he ran for 191 yards on just 13 carries and against North Carolina State he ran for 132 yards on just 15 carries. Wake Forest is 66th nationally in run defense (4.23 yards/carry) so it could be a strong afternoon for Mr. Murphy.
Unfortunately for the Wake Forest defense, the Boston College rushing attack does not stop with Tyler Murphy. BC is 25th nationally in Rushing S&P+ and is 15th nationally in yards/carry at 5.67. They have four tailbacks who average at least 4 yards/carry, including Jon Hilliman who has 7 touchdowns on the season.
Boston College's receivers really aren't that intimidating. Yeah that's right. Gotta throw salt for a rivalry game. They will be out-manned when going against our secondary, but the problem for Wake Forest is forcing Tyler Murphy to throw early. If a quarterback has enough time in the pocket, and corners are forced to defend for an extended period of time, then almost any receiver can get open.
Their offensive line starts nothing but seniors or grad students, and held up very well against Clemson's elite front seven. Our undersized pass rush is going to have a lot of trouble handling these #dudes.
Boston College Defense/Special Teams
This section could almost be as simple as "Boston College has the 18th best defense in the country according Football Outsiders' S&P+ rating, while Wake Forest has the 127th best offense in the country. You do the math." But alas, I will keep on giving the people what they want with some hard hitting #analysis.
Boston College no longer has B.J. Raji, but they do have some rather large #dudes on their defensive line. It could be a very unfortunate series of events for the offensive line and John Wolford on Saturday afternoon. Defensive end Brian Mihalik is 6-9, 295. Goodness. They also have a pair of defensive tackles in Truman Gutapfel and Connor Wujciak, who are 289 pounds and 300 pounds, respectively. I'm setting the over/under on Wake Forest's rushing yards at 9.5 and taking the UNDER (Not that we condone gambling).
The BC secondary isn't spectacular in terms of recruiting pedigree, but they are experienced and as a result have the 21st best pass defense according to Football Outsiders. They only have 5 interceptions on the year, but Wake has thrown (gulp) 12.
I feel confident that Wake is superior to Boston College on special teams. Place kicker Mike Weaver has yet to miss a field goal this season, and is also perfect on PATs. Meanwhile, Alex Kinal and the #KinalKount (@KinalKount) keep growing. #LoveTheLeg #FreeToFly #FootballsFlyFree.
Boston College, on the other hand, has missed 4 PATs already. Bruh. They're onto about their 9th kicker this season, but now freshman Mike Knoll has the starting job. He has made 4/5 PATs and has made 1 out of 2 field goals. Punter Alex Howell also has a golden leg and is averaging more than 44 yards/punt.
I was more optimistic about this game, but then I did research for this preview and became much less confident. I'm sure you're thinking that my research is just a gif of a State Farm commercial and a few Addazio Vines, but I also looked up a few stats and do not like Wake's chances against these #DUDES.
Boston College 30
Wake Forest 7