Louisville football: 3 players to watch for Wake Forest

Carlos Basham Jr. #9 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Carlos Basham Jr. #9 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) /
2 of 3
Louisville football
Christian Beal-Smith #26 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /

RB Christian Beal-Smith

Christian Beal-Smith is a player I am quite fond of for the Demon Deacons. As previously mentioned, his running mate Kenneth Walker III has opted out for the remainder of the 2020 season.

With Walker gone, no other back on the team has more than 15 carries this season. For reference, Beal-Smith has 107 totes this year in seven games.

As a player, he is extremely patient and trusts his blockers to get the job done in front of him. Matt Colburn, former Wake Forest running back that gave Louisville fits, used to like to run through arm tackles and breaking tackles is how he made his money.

That is not Beal-Smith. He is looking to be as patient as possible before choosing his hole and when he gets to that second level, he wants to juke you into oblivion.

He is incredibly elusive in short areas. He is extremely explosive and, while he will not be the fastest player on the field, he will make the Louisville linebackers make a difficult tackle in a phone booth each time he reaches the second level.

If you will remember, Beal-Smith had one of the best games of his career against Louisville in 2019 when he ran 14 times for 123 yards and caught two passes for 38 yards.

The 5’10” 201-pound redshirt junior has 592 yards on the ground and four touchdowns on his 107 carries. That is good for 5.5 yards per rush this season.

This is a player that should make fans (and the linebacker room) nervous. Dorian Etheridge and C.J. Avery‘s senior night could be a big hit if they are able to keep Beal-Smith in check and tackle him in those short areas. That is certainly no easy task for any linebacker.

Louisville will have to do a much better job in 2020 than they did in 2019 of taming him.

Look for Beal-Smith to have the ball in his hands a lot during this game.