Peahead Walker moves Aug. 21 practice to Charleston

The records aren’t clear, but it’s probable that a punt was muffed in the very first football game played. What’s known for sure is that they’ve been muffed ever since — catching a punt might be football’s most difficult single play — and every coach who has spent even a few hours on the sideline has cursed, and torn his cloak and dumped ashes on his head because of it. Peahead Walker, who cursed many a mistake, is certainly no exception. In

How St. Polanski became a Deacon

D.C. “Peahead” Walker coached a lot of great players at Wake Forest College, but none was any more pivotal to Walker’s success there than fullback John Polanski. Polanski, a big and speedy fullback from Buffalo, N.Y., was one of the first high-caliber recruits that Walker brought to Wake and his considerable skills helped lift the Deacons to new competitive plane. The strapping Polanski, a 6-2, 195-pounder, was a punishing inside runner (the fullback’s duty during that era) who also had the

As the NFL kicks up its heels, we remember “The Toe”

A dramatic National Football League playoff game ended last Sunday evening in a duel of long kicks. In the closing minutes of the Green Bay Packers 34-31 win over the Dallas Cowboys, kickers for the respective teams hit three straight kicks from more than 50 yards away, an astonishing feat of skill that has, surprisingly, become somewhat common place in pro football these days. In fact, NFL kickers made 56 percent of kicks from 50 yards and more this season. Which

Going bowling? It wasn’t always automatic

  Payouts for participating schools in college football bowl games are worth are worth millions today; both in cold hard cash and in a barrel of intangibles, like enhanced visibility and increased alumni giving. The lucrative nature of today’s bowling proposition means that the participation of players on college teams is almost never in doubt. Yes, there are occasionally boycott threats – Missouri during the regular season this year, Minnesota for a few days prior to its bowl game – but by

Wakeyleaks and Peahead: Of course he’d do it

Wake Forest’s football program is just a week or so away from a rare bowl appearance, but most of the notoriety coming to Deacon gridders these days deals with the “Wakeyleaks” scandal. For the uninitiated (and those reading this entry in 2029 — nothing ever goes away on the Internet, no matter what you read … on the Internet …) Wakeyleaks involves the apparent transmission of Wake Forest plays and game plan material to Deacon opponents over the past three years

Abu Dhabi Dew! Too many bowls but we’re not done yet

  The college football bowl season starts next weekend (Dec. 17) when the University of Texas San Antonio squares off with New Mexico in the New Mexico Bowl in Albuquerque. The bowl season ends 40 games later on Jan. 2. All 40 games will be televised which means a visual feast for college football fans. But as is the case with most feasts (and their modern equivalent, the all-you-can buffett) there can be too much of a … of a thing. And there

Peahead! Say, that rings a bell!

  Wandering through the tailgaters parked outside BB&T Stadium ahead of Saturday’s Wake Forest-Boston College football game, handing out some brilliantly designed promotional literature Peahead! Life and Times of a Southern-Fried Coach, the recent book by the author of this blog, I ran into several old friends and met plenty of people who nodded knowingly when I mentioned the name “Peahead Walker.” “Oh, I know all about him,” said one long-time Deacon fan. Well, you probably don’t know all about him, I said

Stolen playbooks are one of football’s great traditions

Wake Forest University officials are investigating how some of their game planning materials turned up in an odd place the University of Louisville’s stadium last Saturday while the Deacons were playing the Cardinals. No details have been released as to what was lost (and then found by some members of the official Wake Forest party), so it’s hard to judge just how important this might have been, other to acknowledge what has already been churned up by various Ethernet pundits,

Jackson is tough to tackle, Choo Choo might have been tougher

The Wake Forest football team faces its biggest defensive challenge to date Saturday when it attempts to corral Louisville’s Lamar Jackson, whose torrid start this year has made him the odds-on favorite to win the Heisman Trophy. Jackson’s impressive combination of speed, power and agility — the 6-3, 205-pound purportedly can run the 40-yard dash in less 4.4 seconds — has produced 45 touchdowns so far this season (26 passing, 19 rushing). With three regular-season games, a bowl game and (theoretically)

Secret to Army’s greatest team? They cheated

The 2016 version of Wake Forest’s football team lost to Army Saturday (10-29-16), a disappointing outcome in a game the Deacons were expected to win. This may cause some WFU fans a little heartache, but there’s nothing to worry about. First, we/they are used to this kind of thing and will just move along rather than falling into a deep gold funk, and second, this was a problem for Peahead Walker, too. If Peahead, Wake’s best football coach, struggled with