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Wake Forest Football Players Since 2000 Fantasy Draft

Five BSD writers got together for a fantasy draft of Deacs

Florida State v Wake Forest Photo by Brian A. Westerholt/Getty Images

It’s mid-August, and yet it’s somehow still the 2020 offseason, with the future of college football this season looking bleak to put it lightly.

Fall camp is technically underway, but other than Sage Surratt opting out yesterday there hasn’t been much to talk about.

Our friends over at Backing The Pack did a fantasy draft of NC State players, and it gave the inspiration of something that might make for fun content, so we did one of our own.

The rules were as follows:

  • Everyone drafted an 11-man offense and 11-man defense, along with a kicker and a punter
  • The offense had to consist of a QB, RB, 2 WRs, each of the five offensive line positions, a TE/WR/RB, and a TE/WR/RB/FB.
  • The defense had to consist of 3 defensive linemen, 3 linebackers, 4 secondary members, and a DL/LB/CB/S.
  • Players could only be drafted at positions that they played at while at Wake Forest. For example: Joe Looney is a C in the NFL, but played LG at Wake.
  • The draft was done in a snake draft format, with the order of picks chosen be a random name generator.

The rosters for each writer are as follows, listed in the order of the draft. Each writer gave a brief summary of their team after the rosters.

You, the readers, get to vote on the best team. Click the poll at the bottom of the article to vote.

Disclaimers: There are many great players to choose from, and some may have slipped through the cracks that should have gone earlier. Offensive linemen went early and often, so some teams may seem a little off-balanced.

The top five picks in order were: Riley Skinner, Chris Barclay, Tyson Clabo, John Wolford, Calvin Pace.



QB: Riley Skinner

RB: Cade Carney

RB: Christian Beal-Smith

WR: Greg Dortch

WR: DJ Boldin

TE: Cam Serigne

LT: Jake Benzinger

LG: Barrett McMillen

C: Steve Justice

RG: Patrick Osterhage

RT: Joe Birdsong


NT: Nikita Whitlock

DT: Boo Robinson

DT: Zeek Rodney

DE: Gelo Orange

LB: Hunter Haynes

LB: Joey Ehrmann

LB: Mike Olson

CB: Kevin Patterson

CB: Merill “Bud” Noel

S: A.J. Marshall

S/CB: Ja’Sir Taylor

Special Teams

K: Chad Hedlund

P: Shane Popham

So I had the #1 overall pick and I knew I had to go Skinner. I had dreams of him throwing to the more recent flashy offensive pieces, which I was largely able to get to come true. My defense is definitely not my focus, but when you have Skinner throwing to Dortch, Boldin, and Serigne, with Carney and a speed back like CBS behind a line anchored by Steve Justice, I’m not really sure how many stops you need.



QB: Sam Hartman

RB: Chris Barclay

FB: Tommy Bohanon

WR: Sage Surratt

WR: Kevin Marion

TE: John Tereshinski

LT: Arby Jones

LG: Joe Looney

C: Russell Nenon

RG: Michael Hoag

RT: Jeff Griffin


DE: Carlos Basham

DT: Jyles Tucker

DE: Jeremy Thompson

LB/DE: Kyle Wilber

LB: Brandon Chubb

LB: Justin Jackson

LB/DB: Demetrius Kemp

S: Josh Gattis

S: Josh Bush

CB: Brandon Ghee

CB: Amari Henderson

Special Teams

K: Sam Swank

P: Ryan Plackemeier

My offensive gameplay definitely starts with my first round pick, and second overall pick, Chris Barclay. As Wake Forest’s all-time leading rusher and an ACC Player of the Year opposing teams will see a heavy dose of Barclay. Tommy Bohanon is also in the backfield to provide some extra blocking and the occasional change of pace on handoffs. I was the last one to take a QB, but Sam Hartman is a pretty darn good fifth QB choice. He not only can handoff to Barclay, but has the luxury of being able to throw to Sage Surratt or Kevin Marion, and can find John Tereshinski in the short game. Marion can also run the occasional change of pace end-around that his teams were known to run on a consistent basis. NFL lineman Joe Looney anchors the offensive line, and while I didn't take linemen as early as some, the big boys ought to be able to provide plenty of protection for Hartman and create plenty of space for Barclay. Plus Bohanon is so big he can practically serve as an extra lineman in the backfield.

Good luck to any opposing offenses trying to run on the front three of Boogie Basham, Jyles Tucker, and Jeremy Thompson, along with Kyle Wilber stepping in on the front line as needed. The secondary is probably the second best in this draft, featuring three future NFL Draft picks, and a pretty darn good second corner in Amari Henderson. Good luck throwing on this group. The linebacking corps features three guys who have all been on NFL rosters or practice squads at various points in Wilber, Brandon Chubb, and Justin Jackson, and Demetrius Kemp’s versatility allows him to drop back into coverage if need be.

If for some reason the offense can't convert inside the 40 we’ve got one of the best kickers ever in Sam Swank (and the reason Wake Forest has an ACC Championship from 2006), and should we have to punt we’ve got Ray Guy Award Winner Ryan Plackemeier to handle the punting duties.

This team is a force to be reckoned with for sure.



QB: Jamie Newman

RB: Kenneth Walker

FB: Ovie Mughelli

RB/WR: Kenneth Moore

WR: Chris Givens

WR:Michael Campanaro

LT: Tyson Clabo

LG:Matt Brim

C: Trey Bailey

RG: Michael Collins

RT: Antonio Ford


DE: Tylor Harris

DT: Josh Banks

DT: John Russell

LB: Aaron Curry

LB: Stanley Arnoux

LB: Tristan Dorty

CB: Essang Bassey

CB: Alphonso Smith

CB: Eric King

S: Jessie Bates

S: Chip Vaughn

Special Teams

K: Jimmy Newman

P: Dom Maggio

Overall this was an absolute blast and I’m glad Ed reached out to invite me back and participate! First and foremost, this was a quick moving draft and with 20 years worth of players the usual caveats apply: potential recency bias, not as many diamond in the rough type picks from earlier in the 2000’s, and with the draft speed the obvious “whoops how did we miss picking that guy earlier” (sorry Camp and Dortch that’s firmly on us).

I started the squad off with the best lineman Wake’s produced in twenty years in Clabo - going solidly with the NFL GM mantra of taking the top talent in the trenches for long term success. This paid off very nicely as I was still able to grab the major core of the 2006-2008 defense with Butkus winner Aaron Curry, elite CB Phonzo Smith, Chip “no kicks for you Duke” Vaughn, and Stanley Arnoux. Throwing in bookend CB’s from the twenty year period in Bates and King along with recent sensation Bassey and I firmly believe this is the top secondary in the draft.

On offense we’re focused on using quick hitters and unique backfield sets to keep the defense off guard. Good luck to any defensive front trying to keep tabs on Campanaro, Moore, and Givens as the receiving corps with their versatility and then still having to worry about our man Kenneth Walker out of the backfield as well. Finally, even though someone else snagged my beloved Alex Kinal (RIP @KinalKount - we hardly knew ye) I did round up the special teams with two really good players in Jimmy Newman and Dom Maggio.

So what do you think? Does this team take down the rest of the squads? I sure think so.



QB: John Wolford

RB: Matt Colburn

WR: Kendall Hinton

WR: Donavon Greene

WR: Scotty Washington

TE: Jack Freudenthal

LT: Justin Herron

LG: Tyler Hayworth

C: Zach Tom

RG: Nate Gilliam

RT: Doug Weaver


DE: Duke Ejiofor

DT: Tyler Williams

DE: Wendell Dunn

LB: Marquel Lee

LB: Justin Strnad

LB: Grant Dawson

LB/DB: Luke Masterson

CB: Kevin Johnson

CB: Nasir Greer

S/LB: Thomas Brown

S: Josh Okonye

Special Teams

K: Nick Sciba

P: Alexander Kinal

Balance and efficiency is the name of the game with this team

On offense, we have a hyper efficient corps with Wolford leading the helm throwing to the ever elusive wideouts in Donavon Greene and Kendall Hinton. If he needs a big play down the field, no one is standing taller than Scotty Washington, or if he needs some safe hands underneath Freudenthal has always been a reliable target. Left to right on the line gives a good blend of elite passing protection in Tom, Herron and Gilliam, while offering the mauling run blocking upside from Hayworth in order to open up some holes for Matt Colburn to sing his way right into the endzone.

On defense, no run game will get started vs. the 3 man work of Duke Ejiofor, Tyler Williams in the middle and Wendell Dunn sandwiching the line. You can plug and play any of the 4 linebackers in Lee/Strnad/Dawson/Masterson anywhere, but I’d prefer more of a 3-3-5 stack with Nasir playing free while Thomas and Luke handle SS duties. No one is throwing on Kevin Johnson anyways, so whatever (none) help Okonye needs on his half he can get.

If we stall out on offense then we have the Kinal counter, and the always reliable Sciba handling kicking duties.



QB: Tanner Price

RB: Josh Adams

RB: Tarence Williams

WR: Willie Idlette

WR: Alex Bachman

WR: Nate Morton

LT: (Dr.) Louis Frazier

LG: Phil Haynes

C: Ryan Anderson

RG: Chris DeGeare

RT: Steve Vallos


DE: Matt Robinson

DT: Willie Yarbary

DE/LB: Zachary Allen

DE/LB: Calvin Pace

LB: Jon Abbate

LB: Jaboree Williams

LB: Matt Woodlief

CB: Brad Watson

CB: Cameron Glenn

S: Cyhl Quarles

S: Ryan Janvion

Special Teams

K: Mike Weaver

P: James MacPherson

Since I had the pleasure of picking last, I watched the top 4 guys I wanted in the first round get taken literally 1-4. Having the last pick of a snake draft of course meant I got to pick twice in a row, so for my first 5 picks I just alternated between filling out my O-line with “hog mollies” and grabbing playmakers on defense. As such, my O-line is obviously my strongest unit, something that should delight starting QB Tanner Price. The combination of Calvin Pace (Sporting News ACC Defensive Player of the Year in 2002) and Jon Abbate (SI All-American honorable mention) in the box and some big time hitters with Glenn and Janvion in the secondary should be enough to give opposing offenses nightmares. I was thrilled to get Josh Adams in the 14th round, I felt like that was a steal; putting him behind that monstrous offensive line should make offense pretty easy. I figured at that point I may as well go all in on the running game, so I also grabbed Tarence Williams (2,500 yards and 22 TDs back in the early 2000s when I was around 6 years old). That left a big hole at wide receiver, but I’m pretty happy with the speed of Idlette and the hands of Alex Bachman. I was late to grab a punter, so I took QB James MacPherson, who finished his career with 19 punts for 815 yards (42.9 yards per punt is higher than Popham and Kinal). That also gives me 14,000 yards and 71 touchdowns through the air between Price, Morton, and MacPherson, so there is plenty of potential for trick plays. Bottom line: my team is going to run over anyone and Tanner Price is never getting touched.



This was really fun! Let us know below who you think picked the best team, and if we left off any guys who definitely should have been picked. GO DEACS!!!


Who drafted the best team?

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