The 2018 spring college football rankings, taking the first look at the Wake Forest Demon Deacons.
No. 42: Wake Forest Demon Deacons
Spring Practice Starts: February 26
Spring Game: April 7
Wake Forest Demon Deacons Spring Status
After a surprise breakthrough bowl season in 2016, the Demon Deacons kept it all going in 2017 with an even stronger season after getting by Texas A&M in a wild Belk Bowl shootout.
A fun team that pushed Notre Dame, battled Florida State, and was solid against Clemson was competitive every week, but lost those three games – and clunked late against Duke.
This year’s team loses QB John Wolford, but has a veteran ready to go in Kendall Hinton. WR Tabari Hines is transferring, and TE Cam Serigne is done, but the rest of the receiving corps is in place, and all five starters return up front.
The ultra-aggressive D loses the ends and the top linebackers, but the entire secondary is back. Now the defense has to use the experience and be far better and far more consistent.
Wake Forest Biggest Depth Chart Battle
Defensive end. Duke Ejiofor was a constant in the backfield over the last few years, and losing Wendell Dunn on the other side isn’t a plus, either. Now it’s up to Carlos Basham and Chris Calhoun to prove they’re ready to take over and be the next wave of killers behind the line. The depth is lacking – that will be part of the battle, too.
Wake Forest Biggest Issue
The pass defense has to be better. The secondary might be loaded with experience, but it’s coming off a rough season. It was great late at picking off passes – with seven of the 14 coming in the final four games – but the pass D was roasted. The Demon Deacons allowed 327 passing yards or more in each of the last six games.
Wake Forest Biggest Positive
The running game should be solid. Wolford was a great running quarterback, but so is Hinton. Matt Colburn is back along with the top four running backs from last season. Behind the veteran line, expect over 2,500 rushing yards – after coming up with 2,456 last year – and close to five yards per carry.
Really, Why Are The Wake Forest Demon Deacons Ranked Here?
The only real concern is Hinton – or the quarterback position as a whole. As long as the Demon Deacons can replace Wolford, they should be strong.
The lines will be great, the coaching top shelf, and the offense more explosive. If the defense can start to do more against decent-to-amazing passing teams, eight wins shouldn’t be a problem.