Florida State goes on the road Saturday to take on the Wake Forest Demon Deacons at 3:30 PM on ESPN.
Wake Forest is 2-0 on the season with wins against Old Dominion and Norfolk State.
The last time these two programs faced off was in 2019 as the Demon Deacons prevailed 22-20.
FSU is 30-7-1 against Wake all time.
Observations from the last game
FSU should have blown Jacksonville State out but everyone who played in the game or coached in it managed to have at least one costly blunder. If FSU avoids half of those mistakes they win by 3 touchdowns.
Two times in the 4th quarter the ‘Noles had crucial short yardage situations and Jordan Travis was on the sideline. I think having Travis on the field for these plays would be very beneficial. The play call on the last play of the game was a head scratcher as well.
Backup guard Dontae Lucas has left the program.
Florida State offense versus Wake Forest defense
The Florida State offense can put up a lot of points if it is able to stay out of its own way (see the Notre Dame game). Hopefully another week of practice with McKenzie Milton as the starter can help the offense get back on track.
Coach Norvell has not been impressed with the production of the veteran receivers so I expect to see a youth movement out wide. True freshmen Malik McClain and Josh Burrell, along with Darion Williamson, should get more playing time this Saturday.
The calling card of the FSU offense has been its ability to run the football and a lot of that success is due to the play of Jashaun Corbin. Corbin has been playing great this season with 253 yards rushing.
Florida State defense versus Wake Forest offense
The Wake offense plays very fast (81 plays per game in 2020, 6th in FBS), which helps them get lots of yardage just from breakdowns of the opposing defense. Getting lined up in time will be a key factor in slowing down the Deacons.
WFU’s offense is led by four-year starter quarterback Sam Hartman, who is 1-1 in his career against FSU. Wake Forest returns their leading rusher and receiver from last season. Running back Christian Beal-Smith will get a bulk of the carries and already has three touchdowns on the year.
Wide receiver Jaquarii Richardson has 10 catches for 143 yards this season. Even with a veteran quarterback Wake Forest would rather run the ball then throw it. This makes slowing down Christian Beal-Smith the number one priority for the Florida State defense.
The Deacons return kicker Nick Sciba, who is very accurate but has not made a kick over 50 yards. Both teams have solid punters. I would give Wake the slight edge over FSU on special teams.
Wake Forest 41 Florida State 31.