2019 Wake Forest Demon Deacons College Football Odds and Expert Betting Picks
2018 Record: 7-6
2019 Las Vegas Season Win Total: 6.5*
2019 Season Win Total Picks NCAA Football: 'Under'
With an enrollment of just 5,100 students, it is nearly impossible for Wake Forest to be competitive in college football. Somehow, Dave Clawson has kept them competitive during his five seasons in Winston-Salem, dragging the Demon Deacons to three straight bowl games following a four-year drought.
This year Clawson looks to make it four in a row, and he has kind of a prototypical Wake squad.
The first thing that Clawson needs to do is pick a starting quarterback. Junior Jamie Newman and sophomore Sam Harman are both vying for the job. Hartman started nine games last season with varying degrees of success, completing just 55 percent of his passes, while mustering 2,400 total yards and 18 touchdowns.
There are seven senior starters on offense and that is the clear cut more experienced side of the ball.
Defensively, Wake Forest is simply overmatched. They are just too small and too unathletic to push back against the powerhouse programs in this league. They won seven games last year despite a -3 turnover differential. And if this year's defense can chip in a few more turnovers, then Wake may be able to maintain.
Wake Forest, like so many ACC bottom-feeders, has a favorable early-season schedule. In fact, they only play two road games before Nov. 8!
Home games against Utah State, North Carolina and Elon and road games at Rice and at Boston College mark the opening month. The Elon game is a win. The other four games are really 50-50 propositions.
Wake has winnable home games against Louisville, North Carolina State and Duke. But they won't win all three of those games. And I can't see Wake winning any of their late road games (at Virginia Tech, at Clemson and at Syracuse). They've won seven road games over the past two seasons. But I can't see them getting more than two victories away from home this fall.
Clawson has been a consistent overachiever while guiding the Demon Deacons. I don't love betting against him, especially when armed with an experienced offense. Yet, if Wake gets off to a slow start, there aren't a lot of chances to make up for it later in the year. I'll call for an 'under' here, but this isn't one I'm rushing to the window to wager on.
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