Wake Forest football comes back to beat ODU

Wake Forest 27, Old Dominion 24
Vanderbilt wide receiver London Humphreys (83) runs after a catch against Wake Forest defensive...
Vanderbilt wide receiver London Humphreys (83) runs after a catch against Wake Forest defensive back Demarcus Rankin (22) during the second half of an NCAA college football game in Winston-Salem, N.C., Saturday, Sept. 9, 2023. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)(Chuck Burton | AP)
Published: Sep. 17, 2023 at 4:47 PM EDT
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NORFOLK, VA (Wake Forest Athletics) - Behind 20 unanswered points in the second half and a program record 10 sacks by the vaunted Demon Deacons defense, head coach Dave Clawson’s squad earned Wake Forest football’s first road win of the 2023 season on Saturday at Old Dominion, 27-24.

Wake Forest trailed by 17 points in Saturday’s win at Old Dominion. With that, the Demon Deacons second-half comeback marked the program’s largest since Nov. 11, 2017, at Syracuse. In that contest, Wake Forest also trailed by 17 points and went onto win, 64-43. The 17-point come-from-behind win is tied for sixth in Wake Forest history and tied with the aforementioned 2017 contest at Syracuse for the second-largest in the Dave Clawson era.

The victory marked Wake Forest’s 12th-straight win over a non-conference opponent, which is the second longest streak in the country. The Deacs only trail the two-time defending College Football Playoff Champion Georgia Bulldogs who have won 19-straight out-of-conference contest.


“This was definitely a hard-fought win. It was probably technically and execution-wise, on offense, one of the poorer games we’ve played in the last few years, but I’ve just got to give a lot of credit to our defense. Our defense played their tails off. Other than the one play and the double move that we gave up in the first half, I thought our defense played great the whole game. On offense, we just had to keep plugging away. What I told our team at halftime was that we had a football team in 2017 that went up to Syracuse and played really poorly and we were down 17 points at halftime. That team made a decision that they were just going to play the next play and that we just had to get into it play-by-play-by-play and not panic. If we did that, we’d give ourselves a chance to get back into the football game and fortunately, that happened. So again, I just can’t say enough about the performance of our defense. Jacob Roberts, Dylan Hazen and the defensive line. They were difference makers. We made enough plays on offense in the second half. Mitch certainly didn’t play his cleanest game, but he’s an inexperienced quarterback and this is a growth process. The bottom line is he made plays at the end of the game to help us win the game. We have a lot to work on, but it’s always easier to do that after you find a way to win. We’ll enjoy this one and get to work for a big home game next week against Georgia Tech.”

Wake Forest hosts Georgia Tech next Saturday at 6:30 PM