2017 Army-Navy Game Preview

December 9, 2017

Before we dive into the only FBS college football game on the slate this weekend, I want to take a minute and become vulnerable in front of the entire Internet.

It is with great sadness that I must congratulate the guests of Around The Corn for beating me in the 2017 college football regular season head-to-head prediction game. By a wide margin of 5 victories, the guests have collectively taken down a cultural icon in the sports blogging world. December 2, 2017 will be a day that the everyman will reminisce fondly about for years to come.

Just kidding. But seriously, congratulations to the guests. The overall record of 51-19 for the season is very impressive.

Hopefully, all of you plus others will be back to rub it in during the bowl season. You can sign up for the annual Von Hugendong group here to get in on the action.

As is customary on ATC, I like to give servicepeople the opportunity to voice their thoughts on the purest rivalry left in college athletics today. Joining for the 118th Army-Navy game are ENS Wilcox of the United States Navy and 2ndLT Becker of the United States Marines.

Since I have already proven this regular season that I am incapable of predicting games as well as the guests, out of respect for the people I am keeping my review relatively short this week.

118th Army-Navy Game

Army vs. Navy [game in Philadelphia] (Saturday, 3 PM ET)

The Black Knights have made great strides under current head coach Jeff Monken in his four years with the program, going from 2-10 in his second season to bowl champions last year. Additionally, Monken helped orchestrate a victory over Navy last season, the first time in 14 years that Army has beaten their archrival. Now that the streak is over, it looks as if Army could be the program on the upswing while Navy struggles. The Black Knights are 8-3 coming into this game, which gives them a chance to win 10 games for the first time since 1996. Star quarterback Ahmad Bradshaw leads the nation’s top rushing offense and brings a grit that was shown in this rivalry recently by Navy greats Keenan Reynolds and Ricky Dobbs.

Even with a potent offense in the its own right, Navy lacks the standout leader that it consistently had during the 14-year winning streak. All of the players on both sides are future leaders, but with Bradshaw, there is an extra gear that was shown in this very rivalry game last season. The Black Knights will win a nail biter, which is what many of the games between these two end up being.

My Pick: 24-20 Army

ENS Wilcox’s Take: Navy’s got it in the bag. I think they’ll be able to throw the ball better and farther which will in turn score more points than Army. Army also isn’t able to score any more points than it can count to, so all we really have to do is kick a field goal.

2ndLT Becker’s Take: Navy. Close tough game because Army has a solid running game and backfield.

Enjoy the game, everyone, and be sure to check back starting next Saturday as Around The Corn will have coverage of every bowl game this holiday season.

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