Okay. Okay. Enough already.
The close games continue, and suddenly my hot start has come to a
screeching halt. It's dangerously close to looking like a repeat of last year,
when the ol' Magic Helmet seemed baffled more often than not.
The fact that I've almost won the last two weeks is about as much fun, and
means about as much as, almost winning the lottery.
So, 2-2 record in tow and a new shine job on the ol' MH, off we go to Week
5 and those dreaded angry church elders.
CLEMSON (2-2, 1-2 ACC) at WAKE FOREST (1-3, 0-1)
When Clemson Has The Ball
Clemson fans have been critical of Rob Spence's offense since last week's
loss to Boston College, calling it too conservative. But how about this
scenario, one in which the Tigers throw the ball downfield even less: Knowing
how devastating the Demon Deacon's offense has been against Clemson in each of
the last four years, Clemson will try to establish the run, eat up the clock and
keep the Wake offense off the field. Okay, quit shuddering. But do expect the
Tigers to try and recapture the running game Saturday. And they might even take
a shot or three downfield. Maybe.
ADVANTAGE - Clemson
When Wake Forest Has The Ball
Just what Clemson needed to hear: Cory Randolph moves back to quarterback
this week for Wake Forest and will start for the Deacons, replacing an
struggling Ben Mauck. Randolph has been at the helm in each of the last three
meetings between these teams, including the 2003 debacle in Groves Stadium. He
and running back Chris Barclay have been a devastating one-two punch vs. the
Tigers, and Clemson's troubles with a highly mobile quarterback have been well
documented. Vic Koening's zone scheme may help a little in fighting the
misdirection offense, but this is a "show-me" call here. Until I see Wake's
offense struggle against Clemson...
ADVANTAGE - Wake Forest
Clemson has the advantage in a number of categories here, but one - punting
- isn't among them. The Deacs are first overall in net punting average in the
conference, Clemson next to last. It could be enough to offset the other
Despite what was perceived as a setback last week, Clemson's coaching staff
has this team headed in the right direction. But this week, they look across the
sideline and there's that pesky Jim Grobe...
ADVANTAGE - Even
Bottom line here is Clemson needs a win. Any win. A double-digit margin
would be nice, but in this game it would be a mistake to get greedy. The first
four games have been nail-biters. Why should this one be any different?
Clemson 24, Wake Forest 21