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Wake Forest vs. Boston College Preview

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Last season, the Deacs lost a close contest in a game that most fans believed was a requirement for a bowl game.

NCAA Football: Boston College at Wake Forest Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Last season, the Wake Forest Demon Deacons “needed” this game. With then QB Kendall Hinton suspended, many thought that this game was still a requirement for the Deacs to make a bowl game.

The Deacs however did lose against Boston College last season and still happened to go to and win their third consecutive bowl game.

Game Date: September 28th

Opponent: Boston College

Conference: ACC

Head Coach: Steve Addazio, 7th Year

2018-19 record: 7-5 (4-4)

Bowl Game: First Responder (which was played to a no contest due to weather)

Wins: UMass, Holy Cross, Wake Forest, Temple, Louisville, Miami (FL), Virginia Tech

Losses: Purdue, North Carolina State, Clemson, Florida State, Syracuse

Yards per Game: 404 (68th in NCAA)

Yards Allowed per Game: 396 (66th in NCAA)

Points per Game: 32.0 (39th in NCAA)

Points Allowed per Game: 25.7 (54th in NCAA)

S&P+ Rankings (2018-19 season):

  • Overall: 63
  • Offense: 88
  • Defense: 32
  • Special Teams: 118
  • SOS: 48

Projected S&P+ Rankings (2019-2020 season):

  • Overall: 72
  • Offense: 81
  • Defense: 63

Key Departures

  • Chris Lindstrom OL (First round pick)
  • Zach Allen EDGE (Third round pick)
  • Wyatt Ray EDGE (in NFL camp)
  • Aaron Monteiro OL (in NFL camp)

Notable Returns

  • AJ Dillon RB
  • Anthony Brown QB
  • Kobay White WR
  • Ben Petrula OL
  • Tanner Karafa DL

Last season, the Boston College Eagles started off hot. Lead by their strong running game, the Eagles even earned a top-20 ranking until facing Clemson with a 7-2 record. Unfortunately, the offense sputtered to the end the season and the Eagles didn’t win another game, finishing at 7-5 (with their bowl game not counting due to weather).

The Eagles gave Coach Steve Addazio a two year extension but in his six full seasons, BC has yet to win more than seven games. Although the head man is still there, the coaching staff was shaken around with a new offensive coordinator in Mike Bajakian and defensive coordinator promotion (Bill Sheridan) and demotion (Jim Reid, who is weirdly going to stay on staff as a defensive ends coach).

Even with standout running back AJ Dillon and a strong offensive line led by first round pick Chris Lindstrom, the Eagles offense struggled. Dillon rushed for over 1,000 yards but about 652 came in the first five games. QB Anthony Brown did throw 20 touchdowns but still only averaged 177 yards in the air.

The defense was a bit stronger and more consistent. Zach Allen was a third round draft pick with his 15-TFL campaign while other contributors like Tanner Karafa and Wyatt Ray helped out as well.

Going into 2019, the offense will be similar in terms of skill positions. QB, RB, and top passcatcher are all back but four offensive linemen are gone. The defense lost a ton as well with Allen and Ray gone, along with four of their top five defensive backs. Karafa headlines the returners on defense and let’s be frank, he’s a defensive tackle.

This year will be a huge test for Addazio as QB Anthony Brown’s development will be more key than ever. The schedule starts really tough as well with a game against Virginia Tech to start the season.

Overall, the Eagles are going to have to replace a ton of talent that has moved on the next level. For the Wake Forest Demon Deacons, this season will be somewhat similar to last year where the game is relatively early and can provide a good barometer of where the Deacs slate in the competitive ACC Atlantic.