Wake Forest (5-5, 3-5 ACC) is fighting for its post-season life, while No. 3 Notre Dame (10-0) is in the hunt for a place in the BCS National Championship game.
Jim Grobe, Tommy Bohanon, A.J. Marshall and Colin Summers discussed Wake's weekend trip to South Bend with Deacons Illustrated and other members of the media.
Wake Forest head coach Jim Grobe
Everybody seems to have some real excitement this week. Just talking to the players they're pretty pumped up. Is the mystique of Notre Dame come up at all? "You know not really. Some of our coaches me included have played at Notre Dame, and it's a great environment. It's what football is all about really."
"Our players I think sense that. I think it's a good for us to play right now coming off a tough loss at NC State. Typically it would be a challenge to get the guys back up, but I think just the fact that it's Notre Dame is going to get our guys back on their feet pretty quick."
Does that play into that question I asked you on Saturday, 'Is there anything left in the tank, and you said we'll see?' "There's no question there's a lot emotionally left in the tank for us right now. The problem is we got to go play maybe the best team in the country. We'll see."
"They just got the right formula. They're playing really great defense. Their offense last year turned the ball over a lot. They're not doing that this year. They're taking of the football and good special teams."
"Going to Notre Dame has got our juices flowing again, but we got to go take on a great team."
Wake Forest fullback/H-Back Tommy Bohanon
On the atmosphere at Notre Dame: "It will definitely be a crazy atmosphere. They're known for their football traditions and everything, so it's definitely something that we look forward to, because everything that's gone on with the mystique of Notre Dame."
"It's something as a little boy that you dream of, of playing in a huge stadium with 100,000 people, so I think it's going to be a very cool experience."
When you talk about guys like Manti Te'o as a competitor and a player do you get excited about playing against guys like him and teams like this? "Yeah, as a competitor I always want to play against the best, and I want to be out there against the best, so definitely it's something you look forward to."
Wake Forest free safety A.J. Marshall
Have you guys been able to get the bad taste of last week out of your mouths? "We've put that behind us. Everybody's getting up for the occasion this weekend."
On Notre Dame's offense: "The offensive line, that's where it starts. The offensive line is extremely talented they have veterans, some graduate, fifth-year senior guys. They've been in the program for a while. They know what's at stake. They bought into the program. They've been there for a while, so where it starts I feel like, in the interior on the o-line."
Wake Forest offensive tackle Colin Summers
How are you guys doing after last week? A.J. said you all put it behind you and started focusing on a great challenge. "Oh yeah. Last week was definitely disappointing going against a great NC State team having the chance to be bowl-eligible going to their place and me and A.J. are both from the Raleigh, so we really wanted that one bad. It was disappointing, but we got to look forward to this weekend, getting ready to play a great Notre Dame team."
Are you guys able to stay positive on the offensive line despite all of the injuries? Has that been hard? "It's been hard, but we just rely on each other and build off of each other for confidence and we just go in every week and try to do the best we can."
"Dylan Intemann has had to step up. He's got his number his called. This is a great chance for him to prove to coach that he's the guy for that job, and everyone else up front we're just trying to get after it, get this win and be bowl-eligible."