The third time was the charm for the Demon Deacons. Wake Forest stood at 5-1 following a 28-9 victory over the Syracuse Orange on October 8th, and it took the Deacs three tries to clinch bowl eligibility, but they did it with a 27-20 victory over the Virginia Cavaliers on November 5th to earn the coveted sixth win. For Dave Clawson, the third time tends to be the charm.
The 2016 season is Dave Clawson’s third year as Wake Forest’s head coach, and it is the first year that he had expectations of positive results on the field. Wake Forest went just 3-9 during each of Clawson’s first two seasons, with each season having a FCS win, a win over Army, and a comically low-scoring victory over an ACC opponent. To those on the outside, it may have appeared that the program wasn’t improving. However those watching the program knew that Clawson’s rebuilding process was coming together. The recruiting classes were among the best in school history and the strength numbers were also improving. What happened? A 6-3 record by November 5th despite a bad homecoming loss to Army. Success shouldn’t be a surprise given Clawson’s track record.
Clawson began his head coaching career at Fordham, and despite going 0-11 during year one, he led the Rams to a respectable 7-4 record in year 3. In year 4 he led them to a 10-3 record and conference championship. His next head coaching job was at Richmond, where he went just 3-8 in year 1. By year 3 the Spiders went 6-5, and they went 11-3 and won a conference championship in year 4. Bowling Green was slightly different as the team he took over had experience and he went 7-6 in year 1 before bottoming out at 2-10 in year 2. He only went 5-7 in year 3, but that was still just year 2 of the rebuild. In his fourth year, they went 8-5, and they went 10-3 and won the MAC during his final year. Once again, the third time is usually the charm.
Wake’s next two games will be extremely difficult, but the Deacs will be playing with house money. Louisville is led by Lamar Jackson, who is a lock to win the Heisman, and is by far the best player in the country. Clemson is a national championship contender and they won 54-0 on Saturday. Can Wake shock the world? I don’t know, but I do know that Wake will compete. The Deacs will conclude the regular season with a home game against Boston College, and I expect Wake to win that game.
Wake didn’t get to where they are by being complacent. They worked damn hard and the players and coaches have earned everything they have. It’s time for the Deacs to keep being greedy. Wake has so much to build on moving forward, and there is still a lot to be excited about for the rest of the season. Wake is set up for success in the future, and it’s an extremely exciting time to be a Wake Forest fan.
Wake Forest vs Virginia Recap. Wake is bowl eligible!Posted by Blogger So Dear on Saturday, November 5, 2016