Wake Forest’s defense was the highlight of the Deacs' first controlled intrasquad scrimmage of the spring on Saturday morning at BB&T Field. Veteran safety Cyhl Quarles was one of the defensive leaders, but stats were not provided.
“I thought Cyhl really led the defense,” coach Jim Grobe said, according to the team's scrimmage release. “He made good checks and led the coverage. I liked the way we played on defense. Tristan Dorty and Kyle Wilber did some good things and I thought (nose tackle) Nikita Whitlock played well.”
Grobe said there were too many mistakes on offense, they couldn't sustain drives, and it made it tough to evaluate the quarterbacks. Wake Forest also worked on punt returns and punt coverage, but place-kicker Jimmy Newman has a hip injury and hasn't participated in drills yet. Redshirt sophomore Alex Wulfeck handled the punts on Saturday.
The good news for Wake Forest fans is that the defense, which ranked 110th in the country last year in scoring defense, is showing signs of improvement.
“The defensive guys were having fun, flying around,” said Grobe. “I thought the defense looked much improved over last year. We were playing six freshmen last fall and those same guys are out there now playing with more intensity. If they continue to improve and the offense picks it up, I think we have a chance to have a good spring.”