--By Mike Gilpatrick
--Photo by Jared Anderson
Louisville looks to get a win on Homecoming.
The Cardinals exit the bye week with an opponent that seems beatable. Wake Forest is under .500, and has one of the worst defenses in the FBS.
Despite this, the game still may be a close one.
The Demon Deacons are dealing with a slew of injuries. Three are questionable, and eight more are either out for the season or indefinitely. Most of the injuries are on defense. More than half occurred early in the season.
Wake Forest has the 125th overall defense. Jay Sawvel, the defensive coordinator at the start of the season, was fired after the 56-27 loss to Notre Dame. They promoted Tim Gilmore to the coordinator role. The defense still hasn’t improved. Wake allowed 24 points to Rice, 63 to Clemson, and 38 to low-scoring Florida State.
Overall, Wake Forest allows 37 points per game.
One important thing Wake Forest does better than Louisville is third-down defense. They allow 39.09 percent to convert. For comparison, Louisville allows nearly 48 percent.
Once you get past the defense, Wake Forest is a good offensive team. Junior Cade Carney and Senior Matt Colburn lead the 30th rushing offense in the nation. Carney averages 5.15 yards per carry, and has found the end zone four times. Overall, Wake has scored nine touchdowns on the ground.
Freshman QB has led the passing attack. He has completed 124 of 230, for 12 touchdowns and seven picks. His favorite target is sophomore wide receiver Greg Dortch. Dortch has caught five touchdown catches. He leads the team with seven touchdowns, the other two being off punt returns.
Louisville fans may remember Dortch from 2017; when he caught ten passes for 167 yards and four touchdowns as a freshman. Wake Forest won that game 42-32.
Honestly, there is a low possibility of that happening again. Louisville’s one area of success has been pass defense. The Cards are 22nd in the nation; and allow less than 200 yards through the air.
Louisville could win this game. It may be the last chance the Cardinals have at victory. According to ESPN’s football power index, Louisville has less than a 20 percent chance at winning their final four games.
The game is at noon, and is on Fox Sports South in Louisville.