The 10-3 Wake Forest Demon Deacons, who are having their best season since 2006 look to win their 11th game of the season for just the SECOND time in the program’s 114 year history, which just so happened to be in 2006. The 5-7 Rutgers Scarlet Knights are appearing in their first bowl game since 2014, but this matchup wasn’t planned. The original matchup was supposed to be Wake Forest vs Texas A&M, but got canceled due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the Texas A&M program. Due to the high APR (Academic Progress Rate) that the Rutgers program has, the Scarlet Knights are going bowling.
The last time these two programs met was in 1999 when Wake Forest beat Rutgers 17-10 in Winston-Salem, NC. Wake Forest is 2-0 vs Rutgers in their history, with no matchups after 1999.
Wake Forest is appearing in their 6th straight bowl game, while Rutgers is appearing in their first since 2014. Wake Forest has played B1G opponents in the past 3 bowl games, including this matchup. They have lost to the previous two B1G teams and are 3-2 in their last 5 bowl games. Rutgers had been to 4 straight bowl games (2011-2014), and the last time they were in a bowl game, they beat UNC 40-21. Their record during that stretch was 2-2.
Wake Forest is currently the 16-point favorite against Rutgers. The over/under is set at 62. Wake Forest’s offense has been one of the best in the FBS this season in terms of scoring points, averaging 41.2 PPG, good enough for 5th in the FBS. Wake’s defense has been their Achilles heel this season, allowing 30.3 PPG, and Wake hasn’t played top-tier offenses either. The most points that they’ve allowed came in a 58-55 loss to UNC, the first loss of the season for the Demon Deacons. Rutgers, on the other hand, has scored an average of 20.6 PPG and has allowed just 24.6 PPG. Rutgers held the Big Ten Champion Michigan Wolverines to just 20 points in a Week 4 matchup in Ann Arbor, but haven’t really had a great defensive showing since. This game will come down to which defense plays better, as has most of the season with Wake Forest games. Wake appears to be having most of their starting lineup playing tomorrow, which will be big for me in my betting here. I’m no master bettor but I will take the over here.