The 2021 football season is one day away and it’s time to see how we at BSD are feeling about the Deacs going into Friday night. Keep in mind that these predictions are made without seeing the Deacs play a single game so far this year, so please don’t yell at us too much if they are wildly inaccurate.
I’ve gone back and forth with 9-3 and 10-2 based on the numbers I’m working with. There isn’t a good reason they should lose to or be less than touchdown+ favorites against: ODU, Norfolk, FSU, Louisville, Syracuse, and Duke. You’re at 6 and a bowl there. Assume Clemson is an auto loss that leaves UVA/Army/UNC/NC STATE/BC. 3-2 in that stretch isn’t a far fetched idea. I’ll go 9-3.
I’m not as bullish as Cam, but I’m typically the pessimistic one of the group. Old Dominion and Norfolk State should be automatic wins because both teams are not very good and didn’t even play last season. Likewise, I think at Syracuse and Duke at home will also go in the win column on account of those two teams being train wrecks last season—I don’t think either got significantly better in the offseason. Unfortunately, that is where my definitive wins list ends, giving Wake 4 victories right of the bat. On the opposite side, I think at Clemson and at UNC are most likely going in the loss column, as those are two teams that are vying for the conference championship and even the playoffs this season—and both are on the road. That brings us to the tossup games: FSU, @UVA, Louisville, @Army, NC State, and @BC. FSU hasn’t been very good in a few years, so despite their talent (that I assume they have because they are FSU), I’ll throw that one in the win column. Wake played Virginia at home last season against a backup QB, and the game was knotted up into the 4th quarter, so in my mind that gives the Hoos an advantage at home with Brennan Armstrong healthy. Louisville is a home game but for some reason I feel like the Cardinals always give the Deacs a ton of trouble, so I feel like that could be a loss. The Wolfpack are predicted to be the second best team in the Atlantic this season, however, the Deacs have been solid against the Pack no matter their record lately, so I’ll take a win there. Army was 9-3 last season, but their schedule was very weak and the Deacs do get the bye week to prepare for the triple option attack, so that is another win. I have no clue what to make of BC, but the game is on the road so I’ll chalk that one up to a loss. All in all that comes out to 4 definite wins, 2 definite losses, and 3-3 in the tossups for a 7-5 record.
8-4 for me. That Clemson/UNC stretch to end season is tough. The Deacs might go 6-0 to start the season, beating Old Dominion, Norfolk St., Florida State, Virginia, Louisville, and Syracuse before facing Army on the road after the bye week. That would get Wake to a bowl game and be fairly similar to the way the 2019 season started. 2-4 in the back half would still give Wake a very good 8-4 season.
It seems that no one thinks the Deacs are going to miss a bowl game this season, which in my mind makes sense simply due to how the schedule turned out. An 8-4 season may seem like pretty high expectations for a team that went 4-5 a season ago, but last year was a mess and the Deacs got almost everyone back. Also we’re just biased. Here’s hoping the Deacs can meet these predictions and make it to a sixth straight bowl game.