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September 3, 2012Everyone has had time to reflect on Wake Forest's narrow escape from Liberty, a 20-17 season-opening over the FCS opponent.
How did the Demon Deacons do in regards to the "Five Keys" against the Flames?
1) Support Price
--- This is a two-way street. Tanner Price, who completed 16-28 passes for 195 yards, a touchdown and an interception, missed a few throws he usually makes, but Michael Campanaro was the only target he could consistently depend on.
Liberty only sacked Price once, but the junior quarterback was often forced out of the pocket and to hurry throws.
The running game was not nearly as successful as it needed to create a balanced offensive attack, rushing 38 times for an anemic 98 yards.
2) Establish the run
--- As already indicated Wake's rushing attack was less than respectable. No one likes excuses, but in defense of the Deacs they have four new starters on the offensive line, a unit that was riddled with injuries during the pre-season.
It did not help to have Josh Harris go down with a concussion, throwing DeAndre Martin. However, the redshirt freshman from Hialeah, Fla. was impressive in Harris' stead, rushing 21 times for 74 yards and a touchdown, and catching two passes for 13 yards.
3) Keep it simple
--- Jim Grobe and his staff kept things as simple as possible when they did not know exactly what Liberty was going to do schematically.
The Demon Deacons probably should have taken more shots down field through the air, but with inconsistency at wide receiver outside of Campanaro and the injuries sustained at the position limited what they were able to do in the passing game.
4) No giveaways
--- Price's interception was Wake Forest's only turnover, and the Deacs kept its penalties down to three for 30 yards.
5) Subdue the run
--- Wake held Liberty to 91 yards rushing on 33 carries, and one run ten yards or greater (a 15-yard run by SirChauncey Holloway).