Wake Forest Demon Deacons After going 12-1, winning the ACC and getting taken out to the woodshed in the national title game a year ago, all speculation was eluding to another strong run by the Deacons last season. Unfortunately, the running game that powered the offense to success in previous years lacked the punch to consistently move the ball. The Demon Deacons were forced into more passing attempts than they felt comfortable with and the uneasy balance of completing short passes for first downs was often disrupted. This year figures to gear more towards the offensive strengths for Wake Forest. Sr C Graham Jackson is one of the best offensive linemen prospects in the nation and anchors a veteran OL that figures to help open up the holes for the two-pronged rushing attack. HB Terrell Cooper spent most of last year on the bench after a lackluster spring, but started to emerge as a real threat. Coming out of spring camp this year, Coach Drifter made it clear that there was no definite leader for the starting HB job. Competition drives improvement. Cooper got the starting nod for the season and has not disappointed. He is bigger and faster than Jr HB Adam Williamson, who is more of a 3rd down/finesse back. Williamson will continue to be a figure in most of the shotgun sets, passing downs and the wildcat. The WR corps is much more talented this year as well. So(RS) WR Martin Bryant returns to the field after blowing his knee out and taking a medical redshirt before the start of the season last year. Sr WR Lance Brown figures to be the leading receiver, but Martin Brunner has legitimate number one skills as well. Wake Forest is finally stocked up at the TE position as well. SR TE Nick Lowe has found a field he can frolic in after transferring from Florida (where he received a total of 2 receptions in two years) and could very well lead the team in receiving yards by the end of the year. Talented true frosh TE Mark Williams (PS#1) is bigger and compliments Lowe well in Coach Drifter's two TE offense. On defense most of the turnover is seen on the DL. Gone are AA DE Rob Russ and DT Steve Gaston, but stepping into their roles are capable prospects. DE Derrick Sunderland takes on the book end job opposite Andrew Johnson while DT Brandon Shaw steps into the hole-plugging role in the middle. AA Terrance Perry will continue to anchor the defense at the MLB position and gets some help this year from true frosh OLB Byron Flynn. CB Vincent West continues to prove that he can lock down one side of the field and that leaves FS Kevin Coleman to patrol the middle. Surprise of the offseason has to be the presence of JUCO transfer SS Jon Beck, who is now starting. Coaches thought that he might be a role player on special teams, but Beck has proven he can play immediately by dealing punishing hits to whoever is brave enough to catch a ball over the middle. On the recruiting trail, the theme of this class is definitely athleticism. Coach Drifter has several high profile recruits pegged on his board and will throw the house at them. This should be a small class for Wake and with no pressing needs outside of depth, the coaching staff is going full throttle towards the top of their board. One pledge has already been received in PS#4 TE Justin Lowe, which means the Deacons should be done recruiting the TE position for some time now.