SBN ATL: I noticed Wake Forest has some very, very strange rushing yardage stats. The two QBs run about as often as they pass, and lead the team in yardage. Even without their contributions, the team still runs way more than it passes. Is all this by design? Is this a new thing? How do you feel about Wake's running game?
MR: I'll try to answer your questions all in one. It's a complicated answer.
Tanner Price showed a big arm in the win over Duke, but in the FSU game, he often had little time to throw the ball, so he had to tuck or run for his life.
When Ted Stachitas is in, it is absolutely by design. He was Tebow's successor at Nease H.S. so he is familiar with that style of offense. He had some big passing games in high school, but as of yet has shown little to no development in the passing game (although he was efficient when called into duty after Price's concussion).
A lot of Wake's running game has come from designed QB zone reads and options this year. Wake has run options in the past, but not much in the last few years as Riley Skinner was not a very mobile quarterback. Both Price and Stachitas have wheels, so it appears that the coaching staff is content to let them run. Unfortunately the offensive line is poor, especially in pass protection, so the two quarterbacks have to do this far too often.
Wake has trouble running between the tackles, but freshman Josh Harris has shown bursts in limited action. Wake has a lot more success on the edge and utilizes their fast receivers like Givens and Devon Brown on endarounds at times.
I would like to see improvement in the running game as we have seen very little I-formation (which has been chalked up to FB Tommy Bohanon's shoulder injury), but when you can't run it up the middle or off-tackle, it is hard to establish consistency. But without a conventional running attack or even the fear of one, it is very difficult to run PA plays and opponents are able to sit back and zone Wake to death, hurting chances at the deep balls and even simple crossing patterns.
As I've said in the last couple weeks, something has to change soon and I'm very disappointed in the playcalling in general.