By Charles Jay
Both the Midshipmen of Navy and the Cadets of West Point are headed to bowl games, but for the moment, that doesn’t matter one bit. The one game – the ONLY game – that really counts, at least if you talk to some fans of either side, is the annual meeting they play against each other, which will take place at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. The starting time is 3 PM ET on Saturday, and as CBS televises it, BetAnySports customers can get their fill of in-game action as they place real-time wagers through the facilities of Live Betting Ultra.
Army is 6-5 straight-up and against the football pointspread, and this has qualified them for post-season action, as they will go to play the Heart of Dallas Bowl against North Texas on December 27. Navy, which has gone 9-3 straight-up with a 7-3-2 mark against the points, and they are headed to the Armed Forces Bowl on December 23 against Louisiana Tech.
Navy comes into this game handicapped in a sense, as they will not only be missing quarterback Will Worth, who compiled over a thousand yards both rushing and passing, but also running back Toneo Gulley, who averaged almost ten yards per carry.
The monkey is really on the backs of the Army, which has lost 14 straight times to Navy in this rivalry. But they like to think they have the best chance in a long time to reverse that trend. They do indeed hold a victory over Temple, which just defeated Navy in the American Athletic Conference championship game.
In the college football betting lines posted on this game by the people at BetAnySports, Navy is laying points:
Navy Midshipmen -6
Army Cadets +6
Over 47 points -110
Under 47 points -110
Navy pinned the first loss of the year on the Houston Cougars, who had genuine aspirations of winding up in the New Year’s Six. Make no mistake; they are going to be capable, no matter who is playing quarterback for them. They even pulled one of the Middies out of the stands in the season opener, when Tago Smith went down with an ACL injury. Of course, that was against FCS entry Fordham, in a rather easy 52-16 win. Worth has fit right into the system, with 1196 yards on the ground and 1397 through the air. The team will have to go with Zach Abbey, a sophomore, who was intercepted twice against Temple, after Worth went down.
It should not be a real surprise to BetAnySports patrons that Army and Navy are second and third, respectively, in rushing nationally. They are also in the bottom five nationally in passing offense. Army was the only Division I team that failed to top 1000 yards through the air.
So we know that both these teams know how to run the ball, and that passing it is secondary, meaning that defenses don’t necessarily have to be pre-occupied by it. But who defends the run better? Well, Navy has yielded 4.77 yards per carry on the part of opponents, while Army gave up 3.88 yards an attempt and placed in the top 20 nationally in rushing yards allowed.
Remember another trend about this rivalry – the last ten games played between them have gone under the total.
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