Last week the non-conference schedule was released for Wake Forest, and Ned gave a very detailed write-up on what should be expected. To take another look at it we went to BSD contributors to see what their expectations for the upcoming year are in the non-conference.
Ed: Prediction: 10-2
I expect us to go 10-2 in the non-conference slate. I think we easily win the Paradise Jam, and start the season strong at 10-0. In our first true road game of the season at Charlotte in a tough environment I think we underestimate the 49ers and fall to the pressure of playing a strong team on the road for the first time. I also see us falling to a strong Tennessee team at home as we start to look ahead to the conference slate and get caught in a "trap" game. Hopefully I'm wrong and we start out 12-0, but that's how I see things playing out.
Ned: Prediction: 11-1
While Wake should be favored in every game throughout their non-conference schedule, it’s hard to see them making it all the way to ACC play 12-0. I’ll give the Deacs the Paradise Jam title and likely W’s over Liberty, GA Southern, UNCG, Charlotte, Army, Coastal Carolina, and Richmond, but dropping either the Illinois or Tennessee game at home. If Danny Manning does find a way to keep this team perfect until January, expect Wake to sneak into the Top 25 for the first time since February 2010.
Cam: Prediction: 11-1
I think it's quite the understatement to say that if this team loses more than 2 games on this schedule, there would be cause for alarm. he only two teams I can see giving a good or great game would be Illinois and Tennessee. Both however are home games. The Tennessee game might be more neutral because of it being Christmas break, but Illinois should be RAUCOUS. I'll give the Deacs and 11-1 start before going into conference play.
Riley: Prediction: 12-0
The non-conference schedule is definitely a step back from the difficult schedule that Danny Manning has been known for in the past three seasons at Wake Forest. That being said, I think it’s an excellent way for this team to get off to a great start before heading into ACC play, where the conference should be down again. Quite frankly there is no reason for Wake Forest to lose more than one or two games in this OOC schedule, and they need to have success if they want to make it back to the NCAA Tournament. I will be overly optimistic and go out on a limb to say that we will take advantage of the schedule and maintain a perfect 12-0 record headed into ACC conference play.
Adam: Prediction: 11-1.
This is a really favorable non conference schedule for the Deacs. From just glancing at the opponents, the toughest definite games in my opinion are Richmond, Tennesssee and Illinois, and we get all 3 at home. Aside from that, it looks like many of the bigger name teams we are playing lost a sizeable amount of scoring and experience due to graduation. Illinois played with 6 seniors last season who accounted for 43 ppg, Richmond loses their 2 best players in Jones and Cline, who combined for 35.3 ppg, and Colorado graduated 45.7 ppg. The Deacs typically play pretty well at home, so I'm pretty confident that we can win all of the home games. While Wake sometimes plays pretty poorly on the road, I don't think Charlotte or Coastal Carolina have enough talent right now to beat us. Likely the toughest potential game on the schedule is Houston, who went 20-11 last season in the championship game of the Paradise Jam, assuming the make it. Honestly, Wake should be favored by a decent amount in all of these games and could likely go 12-0.