A very close and competitive game is expected this Saturday, as the NC State Wolfpack head on the road to take on the Demon Deacons at Trust Field in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. This NC State Wolfpack team has been rolling as of late, going 4-1 in their last five games, with their sole loss over that stretch being a heart-breaking 1 point loss to the Miami Hurricanes.
The Demon Deacons bring an excellent offense with them into this one, but that offense could not get this team over the hump in their last game, falling to UNC by a score of 58-55.
NC State Wolfpack Betting Preview:
The NC State Wolfpack certainly does not have the offense to go toe-to-toe with the Demon Deacons, but they also have a big advantage in terms of the defenses, so this really should be a very competitive game in a matchup of offense vs. defense. The bookies certainly agree here, as they have priced this at +2 for the Wolfpack, and that seems fair given these two teams’ stats and ability.
The one big way the Wolfpack could look to move the ball here is with the running game, as they have an excellent sophomore RB in Zonovan Knight, who has 617 rushing yards and 3 TDs. He is a very talented running back, but he has been held under 100 rushing yards in the last few games, and I certainly do not think that will happen again, given the defense he will face here on Saturday.
The nice thing for the Wolfpack is that they do not need to lean exclusively on the running game with the level of QB play they have got this year out of Devin Leary. Leary has 2475 yards and a pretty crazy 25-3 TD-INT ratio. This season has essentially come out of nowhere, as he has not had anywhere close to stats like these throughout his college career, and I can only think those stats get better here with that Demon Deacons defense on the other side of the equation.
The most likely scenario here is that the Wolfpack defense steps up and holds Wake Forest to a reasonable amount of points, with this defense only allowing 321.4 total yards. Their front 7 is no joke allowing only 100.6 rushing yards per game. Look for these guys to be in the backfield early and often and make Sam Hartman’s life a little more difficult than he is used to.
Wake Forest Demon Deacons Betting Preview:
Wake Forest is a little easier to break down, as we do not really need to talk about their defense, which has been shredded all year. The only way this team gets the job done here is to win by a shootout, and they certainly do have the personnel to do just that. Although I think this may be a tough matchup for him, Sam Hartman has been elite, throwing for 2873 yards and 27 touchdowns with minimal picks. His last game was not all that great, completing just 49% of his passes and throwing two interceptions, so even though he threw for 398 yards and 5 TD’s, this will be a bounce-back spot for the sophomore QB.
I do not expect the Demon Deacons to get their running game going at all here, so it should be an all-out aerial attack from Wake Forest, and that makes me believe that Jaquarii Roberson could have yet another big game as he has managed 100+ yards in 4 of his last 5. He is the number one target for this game, and NC State just doesn’t have the guys to keep a guy like him down, so watching the possible future NFLer in this matchup will be interesting.
NC State Wolfpack vs. Wake Forest Demon Deacons Betting Lines & Odds
The total for this game is really where I want to go, as this one seems to have shootout written all over it. Yes, the NC State Wolfpack has a better defense, but they are way stronger upfront than their secondary, and Wake Forest does not really need to run the ball all that much.
I am a bit worried about the Wolfpack pass rush getting home, but Sam Hartman has made good decisions, for the most part, this year, and if that means more short passes or screens, that is the way they will go to move the ball.
In terms of the other side of the ball, NC State has all the pieces to put up a ton of points, and that is made even more true based on the Demon Deacons defense, so I do see this one going over the 66 point total.
Free Betting Pick
NC State Wolfpack vs. Wake Forest Demon Deacons Betting Verdict: Over the total
NC State Wolfpack vs. Wake Forest Demon Deacons Final Score Prediction: 41-38 NC State