This week we are joined by Martin Rickman of BloggerSoDear.com to discuss the Wake Forest Demon Deacons. I recommended the the guys at BloggerSoDear for their current spot and couldn't be more pleased. They do an excellent job. My answers to their questions are here. Let's get to it:
1. Where is this Wake team mentally after the 68-24 drubbing at the hands of Stanford? Any feel for the likelihood of a hangover effect?
Well I wouldn't put them in the "confident" camp. Looking at the quotes from after Stanford, this is a team that got whipped and knows it. The biggest question is, how do they respond? I said early on in the preseason that if they get down on themselves this could get ugly fast, but if they are able to learn something every game, at least there's that. We all knew Stanford was an auto-loss. There was no chance of a win there. Hangover effect? Possibly. But I'm expecting a loss, by at least two scores, and I'm not chalking that up to a hangover--FSU is just a better team.
2. Who are Wake's 5 best players so far this season?
Tanner Price, Josh Harris, Chris Givens, Devon Brown and Alex Frye. Frye is probably the best player on this defense (which I realize doesn't seem like it's saying much, but he is the best playmaker we've got). Price has shown the most upside potential and he'll take his licks, but this kid has a bright future. Harris needs the ball more and has shown great burst from the RB position. And as to Givens and Brown, they are part of our very talented receiving corps. They catch everything and show a lot when they get into the perimeter on handoffs.
3. If you could magically fix one element of Wake's team (run offense, pass offense, run defense, pass defense), which one do you fix and why?
I'm not going "run defense" or "pass defense" in general because it's not that simple. The DBs give too much of a cushion, but part of the reason they give that cushion is because of the DL. So I'm going DL in general. They are undersized, they get no pressure and they don't scare anyone. I don't think Luck was knocked down more than once or twice last game, and it's extremely difficult for your DBs to play bump and run or stay on their man if they know that the QB is going to have all day to throw the ball. Something needs to be done on the line or this problem is only going to get worse.
4. Do you put most of the blame on the new quarterbacks for the offense's lack of progress?
No. The offense has scored. That's not our problem. There are growing pains, but I'm actually pleasantly surprised with our ability to score. If you had told me we'd have 133 points through three weeks I would have actually laughed in your face.
5. What would you consider an acceptable game in Tally? What result would be unacceptable?
Keeping it close. Showing some heart. Actually knocking down Ponder once or twice. Seeing the team get hyped up after making a big play on defense. Not giving FSU the ball at the 35 or better on average field position. Losing by less than 17. Unacceptable? What happened in Palo Alto.
As always, thanks to TomahawkNation. I have nothing but good things to say about your site, and I'm proud to be part of a network of ACC blogs as good as yours.