The Wake Forest football program reportedly has its defensive coordinator. Wake Forest had an excellent defensive coordinator in Mike Elko, but his work was so outstanding that Notre Dame hired him away. 247 Sports is reporting that Dave Clawson will be replacing Elko with Jay Sawvel, who previously served as Minnesota’s defensive coordinator. Learn more about him.
Sawvel has only been a defensive coordinator for one season, but his work has been impressive. Minnesota was ranked 14th in yards allowed per play, 21st in scoring defense, 21st in total defense, and 23rd in S&P+ ratings. Prior to taking over as defensive coordinator, he served as the team’s defensive backs coach and special teams coordinator. His pass defenses are routinely very good, and he has had a member of his secondary drafted during each of the previous three NFL Drafts.
Though the news is not yet official, it appears that Sawvel is already helping to bring talented prospects to Wake Forest. Raheem Layne is a consensus 3-star prospect who holds offers from Minnesota, Indiana, and Vanderbilt.
By all accounts this appears to be a fantastic hire for the Demon Deacons. His defenses are statistically excellent, he’s a strong recruiter, he can find “diamonds in the rough,” and he produces NFL talent. That’s exactly what Wake Forest should be looking for in a DC. Outstanding job by Clawson to replace Elko with such a quality candidate.