On Sunday I detailed the best case scenario for this year's Wake Forest football team. In the interest of fairness, I am now discussing what the worst case scenario is for the 2015 Demon Deacons. On Tuesday, Riley assigned win probabilities to each individual game and came out with a VERY SCIENTIFIC estimate of Wake Forest's most likely win total. So, how bad can it get for the Deacs this season?
It's my opinion that the only guaranteed win on Wake's schedule this season is the season-opener against Elon. It's at home against an FCS opponent who is full of freshmen. It's as close to a sure-thing as the Deacs have had in years. Outside of that, every game on the schedule is loseable. In fact, Wake Forest's game at Army may be the only other game all year in which the Deacs are favored. I expect Wake to win that game, but Wake Forest failed to win a road game all of last season, and had to mount a second-half comeback last year to beat Army at home.
September also offers winnable games such as a road trip to Syracuse and a home contest against Indiana, but Wake Forest could easily play well in both of those games and still lose. Cuse blew Wake Forest out at home last season, and we already know that the Indiana coach PROMISED TO KICK WAKE FOREST'S ASS! Wake's expected value of wins for September is probably above 2, but that also means that winning three games is about as likely as just winning one.
Regarding games against Florida State, Clemson and Notre Dame, I believe our expected value of wins there is essentially zero. That leaves road games remaining of Boston College, and North Carolina, as well as home games against Louisville, North Carolina State, and Duke. Could you see us losing all of those games? I could. The most winnable game there is the home game against NC State, and unfortunately the Wolfpack have a BYE week before they play the Deacs. While North Carolina State hasn't won in Winston-Salem since the Lincoln administration, Wake Forest will be an underdog in that one. In all honesty, the expected value of those five games is probably slightly under one win.
Wake Forest has 17 freshmen in the two-deep, and 30 including both freshmen and sophomores. To say that Wake Forest is young is like saying that LeBron James is good at basketball. We are very thin, so if some of our starters get hurt, we could be in significant trouble. With Wake's schedule this season, the Deacs could objectively be better than last year's team, but still have a worse record. I don't believe that 1-11 is probable, but it's certainly possible. The season is almost here, and it's time to watch the process unfold. Let's hope this worst case scenario doesn't play out.