Wake Forest Demon Deacons football
|Wake Forest Demon Deacons football|
|Head coach||Dave Clawson|
|Home stadium||BB&T Field at Groves Stadium|
|Location||Winston-Salem, North Carolina, US|
|All-time record||429–624–33 (.410)|
|Postseason bowl record||6–4–0|
|Conference titles||2 (1970, 2006)|
Old gold and black
|Fight song||O' Here's to Wake Forest|
|Marching band||The Spirit of the Old Gold & Black|
|Rivals||Duke Blue Devils
North Carolina Tar Heels
NC State Wolfpack
The Wake Forest Demon Deacons football team represents Wake Forest University in the sport of American football. The Demon Deacons compete in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the Atlantic Division of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC). Wake Forest plays its home football games at BB&T Field and is currently coached by Dave Clawson.
Wake Forest struggled in football for much of the second half of the 20th century. This is largely because it is the third-smallest school in FBS in terms of undergraduate enrollment (behind only Rice and Tulsa). It is also by far the smallest school playing in a BCS conference. However, since the start of the 21st century, the Deacons have been mostly competitive.
- 1 History
- 1.1 Early History (1888-1928)
- 1.2 F. S. Miller era (1929-1932)
- 1.3 Jim Weaver era (1933-1936)
- 1.4 Peahead Walker era (1937-1950)
- 1.5 Rogers and Amen (1951-1959)
- 1.6 Billy Hildebrand era (1960-1963)
- 1.7 Bill Tate era (1964-1968)
- 1.8 Cal Stoll era (1969-1971)
- 1.9 Tom Harper era (1972)
- 1.10 Chuck Mills era (1973-1977)
- 1.11 John Mackovic era (1978-1980)
- 1.12 Al Groh era (1981-1986)
- 1.13 Bill Dooley era (1987-1992)
- 1.14 Jim Caldwell era (1993-2000)
- 1.15 Jim Grobe era (2001-2013)
- 1.16 Dave Clawson era (2014-Present)
- 2 Records
- 3 Rivalries
- 4 Wake Forest head football coaches
- 5 Championships
- 6 Retired jerseys
- 7 Individual award winners
- 8 Current NFL players
- 9 Other notable players
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Early History (1888-1928)
From 1891-1893, under head coach E. Walter Sikes, Wake Forest posted a 6-2-1 record.
Harry Rabenhorst coached Wake Forest for two seasons, posting a 3-8 record.
Hank Garrity served as head football coach from 1923-1924. He compiled a 19-7-1 record in those two seasons. His .7037 winning percentage is the highest in Wake Forest football history.
F. S. Miller era (1929-1932)
F. S. Miller served as Wake Forest's head football coach for four seasons, posting a record of 18-15-4. His first two seasons were winning seasons, 6-5-1 and 5-3-1, respectively.
Jim Weaver era (1933-1936)
Jim Weaver, who would go on to become the ACC's first commissioner, coached the football team for four seasons.
Peahead Walker era (1937-1950)
Peahead Walker came to Winston-Salem from Elon and was Wake Forest's head football coach for fourteen seasons, compiling a record of 77-51-6. He tied with Jim Grobe as the winningest head football coach in Demon Deacon football history. He led the Deacons to two bowl games, a win over South Carolina in the inaugural Gator Bowl in 1946 and a loss to Baylor in the 1949 Dixie Bowl. He resigned after the 1950 season and was inducted into the Wake Forest Athletics Hall of Fame in 1971.
Rogers and Amen (1951-1959)
Tom Rogers led the Demon Deacons from 1951-1955, succeeding Walker. Rogers never had much success at Wake Forest and was replaced after five seasons.
Paul Amen, who succeeded Rogers, came to Wake Forest from his post as an assistant at Army and also struggled but managed to go 6-4 in his final season, his only winning record. He led coached the Demon Deacons from 1956-1959. Amen's 1957 posted a winless 0-10 record. He was selected in 1956 and 1959 as ACC Coach of the Year, however. Amen retired after four seasons.
Billy Hildebrand era (1960-1963)
Billy Hildebrand was promoted from defensive line coach to head coach following the retirement of Amen. Hildebrand, like his predecessors, struggled to find much success. His best season came in 1961 in which the Demon Deacons posted a 4-6 record. After four seasons and a 7-33 overall record, Hildebrand was fired.
Bill Tate era (1964-1968)
Bill Tate led the Demon Deacons for five seasons. From 1964-1968, Wake Forest posted a 17-32-1 record and steadily declined year-by-year, going from 5-5 in Tate's first year worsening each year to 2-7-1 in his last. Tate was fired after failing to post a winning record in any of his five seasons.
Cal Stoll era (1969-1971)
Cal Stoll was hired away from Michigan State, where he served as an assistant. Stoll was able to have success with the Deacons, posting a 3-7 record his first year then back-to-back 6-5 records in his last two. Stoll left Wake Forest to take the head coach position at his alma mater Minnesota. His final record was 15-17 and included Wake Forest's first ACC championship in 1970.
Tom Harper era (1972)
Tom Harper was promoted from assistant coach to head coach following Stoll's departure. The Demon Deacons struggled to a 2-9 record in Harper's only season and Harper was replaced.
Chuck Mills era (1973-1977)
John Mackovic era (1978-1980)
John Mackovic re-energized the Wake Forest football program, turning the program around from 1-10 to 8-4 in one year. His teams were aggressive and fast. Mackovic won the Walter Camp Coach of the Year Award in 1979. Following the 1980 season, Mackovic left Wake Forest to take an assistant coaching position with the Dallas Cowboys. Mackovic's final record at Wake Forest is 14-20.
Al Groh era (1981-1986)
Under Al Groh, the Demon Deacons compiled a 26-40 record. Groh's best season as a 6-5 1984 season and Groh resigned after the 1986 season to take an assistant coaching position with the Atlanta Falcons.
Bill Dooley era (1987-1992)
Bill Dooley came to Wake Forest from Virginia Tech. He led the Demon Deacons to one bowl game, the 1992 Independence Bowl, which Wake Forest won, capping off an 8-4 season in which they finished ranked #25 in both the AP and Coaches Polls, respectively. Dooley retired after that game. Dooley's six seasons in Winston-Salem are tied for fourth for longest tenure and his 29 wins are third in most wins in Wake Forest history. He had three winning seasons at Wake Forest, 7-4 in 1987, 6-4-1 in 1988, and the 8-4 1992 team. Dooley's final record is 29-36-2.
Jim Caldwell era (1993-2000)
Jim Caldwell came to Wake Forest from his post as quarterbacks coach at Penn State. Caldwell was the first African American head football coach in Wake Forest football history. Caldwell's Demon Deacons were known to pass the ball well, but struggled to run the ball, with one season the leading rusher only gaining a total of 300 yards for the entire season. Wake Forest struggled in Caldwell's eight-year tenure, posting only one winning season (a 7-5 1999 season, capped with a win in the 1999 Aloha Bowl). Caldwell was fired after the 2000 season. His final record is 26-63.
Jim Grobe era (2001-2013)
Jim Grobe came to Wake Forest from Ohio. His best season was 2006, when the Demon Deacons posted an 11-2 record, won their first ACC championship in 36 years, and played in the Orange Bowl, a game they lost to Louisville. For the teams successes in 2006, Grobe was awarded the ACC coach of the Year, Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award and AP Coach of the Year Award. Grobe's 77 wins are tied with Peahead Walker for most in Wake Forest football history. After that 2006 season, Grobe's teams weren't able to find much success, winning six or more game just three times in the next seven years. Grobe resigned as head coach after the 2013 season with a 77-82 overall record.
Dave Clawson era (2014-Present)
All-time bowl record
Wake Forest has played in ten bowls in its history and owns a 6–4 record in those games. For the 2006 season, the school earned a bid to its first ever BCS game, with an Orange Bowl match-up against Louisville. Wake also had played in the 1982 Mirage Bowl in Tokyo, Japan against Clemson. However, because this game was played during the regular season, the NCAA does not recognize it as an official bowl game. Wake also competed in the 1951, 1953, 1954 Tobacco Bowl in Richmond, Virginia. According to the NCAA, it doesn't count as an official bowl game since this game isn't a postseason bowl.
Wake Forest is referred to as being a part of "Tobacco Road" or the Big Four, terms that refer to the four North Carolina schools that compete heatedly against each other within the ACC. Wake Forest swept the series with its Tobacco Road rivals in 1924, 1951, 1970, 1984, 1987, 2006, and 2007.
North Carolina State
Wake Forest also plays Vanderbilt on a regular basis. They had a contract through 2013 to play during the final "rivalry week" of the regular season after the 2014 & 2015 games were cancelled.
Wake Forest head football coaches