Quick thoughts: Army returns to Armed Forces Bowl

Can’t say it’s shocking news that Army is headed back to the Armed Forces Bowl.

For all the discussion about the Black Knights possibly not being invited to the postseason with a 9-2 record and No. 22 ranking in the Associated Press poll, the Armed Forces seemed like a logical landing spot for Army, considering the relationship that the academy and athletic director Boo Corrigan have fostered with Brant Ringler, the bowl’s executive director.

Corrigan said during Sunday’s conference call that he had been speaking Ringler and Armed Forces Bowl officials, “for the better part of a year,” about Army’s possible return.

“We were very fortunate to work behind the scenes in an effort to make sure that once we had a slot available that they (Army) were able to come to the Armed Forces Bowl,” Ringler said. “It’s a perfect home we believe for Army to play in. It’s part of what we do here. Now, we’ve had 10 of the last 12 years an academy in our game. We couldn’t be more happy with having Army in our game.”

The Armed Forces Bowl couldn’t pull another marquee matchup for the second straight season. Last year, the bowl delivered Army’s triple option and Ahmad Bradshaw vs. San Diego State and the nation’s leading rusher Rashaad Penny.

Houston (8-4), Army’s opponent on Dec. 22 at Amon Carter Stadium in Fort Worth, Texas, will be without all-American defensive lineman Ed Oliver, a projected No. 1 pick in the 2019 NFL draft, and starting quarterback D’Eriq King. Certainly, more attention would be drawn to the bowl if Oliver and King were playing.

Yahoo Sports ranked the Armed Forces Bowl matchup No. 16 among the 39 bowls.

Was hoping for the first meeting between Army-Boise State in a clash of ranked teams. Boise State will play Boston College in the First Responder Bowl, formerly the Heart of Dallas Bowl.

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