John Wolford, Trevon Young

Wake Forest's John Wolford, left, leads a Demon Deacon offense that has struggled to put points on the board.

Chuck Burton, The Associated Press

The Irish have but one roadblock standing between them and an undefeated home record: the not-so-imposing Wake Forest Demon Deacons.

That's who comes to town Saturday afternoon for Senior Day. And if the Irish play even close to their potential, this game should not be anything to worry about.

Wake Forest currently has a 3-6 record, with their only wins coming against Elon, Army and Boston College (who the Irish face the following week at Fenway Park in Boston). Among the six losses are blowout defeats at the hands of Syracuse, North Carolina and NC State. Wake Forest did play tough against some good teams, however, including a 24-16 home loss to Florida State and a 29-19 home setback to Louisville last weekend. A loss of focus or untimely turnovers could make life difficult for Notre Dame.

Wake Forest appears to use a running back by committee approach, with three backs (Hinton, Bell and Colburn) splitting the role this year. Their receivers are also evenly distributed in regards to production, indicating there doesn’t appear to be a top threat that the Irish defense can focus on.

The key stat for this game is that Wake Forest is putting up an average of 18.7 points per game, while the Irish have been scoring 37.1 points per game. If that trend continues and the Irish take care of business, this should be a good home finale for this year’s seniors and hopefully give the Irish underclassmen a chance to see the field and get some much needed experience.

Prediction: Notre Dame 35, Wake Forest 17.


Tom Desplinter is a UND graduate, Captain in the U.S. Army Reserve JAG Corp and associate of Kirkland & Ellis LLP. He is a life-long Fighting Irish fan and has suffered with the Chicago Cubs since birth.