The Wake Forest football team began preseason practice on August 6th at 6 a.m. Combined with the fact that the season-opener is less than one month away, I thought it would be a good time to provide an early look at a projected depth chart. In this edition I look at the offensive players. Look for the defensive and special teams edition soon. Some of the starting roles are basically locked up, while others are far more fluid. Disagree with any of my projections? Let me know in the comments section!
I expect John Wolford to continue to be the starter, as he appeared to be the better player in the spring. He was more in control of the offense, and looked more comfortable in the pocket. Coach Clawson has also stated that Wolford may run more this year. Clawson did not believe that the team had sufficient depth last year, and therefore did not want to put Wolford at greater risk for injury. I still believe, however, that true freshman Kendall Hinton will play in some capacity. I anticipate that Kyle Kearns, another freshman quarterback, will redshirt.
Running back is the hardest position to predict. Wake Forest had the worst rushing attack in the country last year, but it's difficult to determine how much of that blame can be assigned to the offensive line. It's my opinion that true freshman Rocky Reid will be the team's starting running back. He held offers from Louisville and West Virginia, and is one of the most highly touted running backs that Wake Forest has ever landed. Dez Wortham and Isaiah Robinson should both get carries, while true freshman Matt Colburn could see some time as well.
Tight end should be one of the better positions for the Demon Deacons. Cam Serigne is arguably the best tight end in the conference, and led the team in receptions last season. I expect him to have another strong season and I also anticipate that Devin Pike will improve upon his true freshman campaign. Wake would have been even deeper at this position, but Jake Bargas decommitted, and Bo Archibald got injured and transferred. Steve Donatell is a good athlete, and it will be interesting to watch his progression as he changes positions.
Wide receiver is another potentially fluid position that could look completely different from the receiving corps that Wake Forest fans saw last year. In the slot, I anticipate that true freshman Tabari Hines will start. He was an early-enrollee who can make defenders miss, and had an impressive spring.
On the outside, I expect that redshirt freshman Cortez Lewis has an excellent chance to start. He is a physical receiver who has very impressive hands. I also believe that graduate transfer K.J. Brent has an excellent chance to see significant playing time due to his imposing 6'4" size. Brent could be a legitimate redzone threat this year for the Demon Deacons.
Tyree Harris and Jared Crump should both help provide depth at the position, and could also push for starting roles. Wake Forest finally has some depth at this position, and I expect the passing attack to be greatly improved from a year ago.
Justin Herron/Phil Haynes
Josh Harris/Dylan Intemann/Patrick Osterhage
A'Lique Terry/Ty Haworth/Ryan Anderson
It was anticipated that three redshirt freshmen would start on the offensive line, but Ryan Anderson's five-game suspension was a curveball to that plan. I expect that offensive tackles Justin Herron and Phil Haynes have solidified themselves as starters.
Josh Harris and Dylan Intemann are probable starters at guard. Both started last season, and will bring experience to the line. Due to lack of depth at the position, it's possible they have to play some at either tackle or center. Patrick Osterhage, who redshirted last year, should play some guard in a reserve role. A'Lique Terry started at center last year, and I anticipate that he will be the starting center for the first five games.