WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – Wake Forest's run as a ranked, undefeated team came to an end last weekend, but its status as an offensive force remains intact. The Demon Deacons will try to bounce back from their first loss when they host Florida State on Saturday.
TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, ACC Network. LINE: Wake Forest -2
Wake Forest worked its way up to No. 17 prior to last week but had a fourth-quarter comeback fall short in a 62-59 loss at home to Louisville that came on the heels of a bye week. "We come to work every single day," Demon Deacons linebacker Justin Strnad told reporters after the setback. "...We were 5-0 going into this game. You don't go to a bowl game for being 5-0, that's not accomplishing anything. ... We will be ready to answer the bell next week." Answering that bell means preparing for a Seminoles squad that fell to No. 2 Clemson 45-14 last week but believes it can make a run over the second half of the season with a more favorable schedule. "There's a lot of football left," Florida State defensive end Janarius Robinson told the school's website. "Everything we want is still a possibility. It's still in front of us. So, we've just got to come back and keep working."
ABOUT FLORIDA STATE (3-3, 2-2 ACC)
The Seminoles' three losses have come against teams that have spent at least some time in the top 25 this season (Boise State, at Virginia, at Clemson) and the team is looking for a little more from an offense still trying to decide on a starting quarterback. Alex Hornibrook threw the lone touchdown pass in last week's 45-14 loss to Clemson while splitting time with James Blackman (9-of-23, 66 yards, two interceptions last week), and coach Willie Taggart plans on playing both against the Demon Deacons. "We always evaluate what we're doing and then make sure that we do what's best for our football team," Taggart told reporters. "Again, we want someone that's going to lead our team, and I think we've seen that both guys have executed our offense really well."
ABOUT WAKE FOREST (5-1, 1-1)
The Demon Deacons are facing a quarterback issue as well with starter Jamie Newman dealing with a left shoulder injury suffered in last week's loss. "He's kind of day-to-day," Wake Forest coach Dave Clawson told reporters of Newman on Tuesday. "He got hurt at the end of the second quarter. We had X-rays to try and eliminate the worst thing that could have happened to him and that was eliminated. He was able to return. He's sore and we'll just take it day-by-day and see how he feels later in the week. It's been one practice and we'll have a better feel later in the week." Newman, who passes with his right arm, threw both of his interceptions in last week's loss after returning from the injury.
1. Wake Forest is fourth in the FBS in total offense, averaging 540.5 yards.
2. Florida State owns a turnover margin of plus-4 - the best mark in the ACC.
3. The Seminoles own a 30-6-1 lead in the series and have taken each of the last seven meetings.
PREDICTION: Wake Forest 45, Florida State 38