Prediction blog: Navy

Army is a 7-point favorite over Navy in the 119th Army-Navy game Saturday at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.

The service-academy rivalry is getting respect from oddsmakers. Don’t see many games pitting a 9-win team (Army) against a 3-win team (Navy) with a touchdown spread.

The last four Army-Navy games have been decided by 16 total points.

Army has pulled out the last two games in the fourth quarter.

The Black Knights are ranked (22 in AP, 25 in Coaches) entering the Army-Navy game for the first time since 1996.

Sal Interdonato (Times Herald-Record Army football beat writer): Army 27, Navy 20. Expect another tight game into the fourth quarter.  Navy slotback Malcolm Perry will be the most electric player on the field but Army has more ways to beat the Midshipmen on offense. Army defensive coordinator Jay Bateman has limited Navy to two touchdowns in each of the last two games.
Josh Conklin (Times Herald-Record photographer): Army 21, Navy 14

Predictions from around the college football universe
Pete Fiutak (College Football News): Army 31, Navy 14. Fiutak writes on College Football News, “As always, the records and the X and O stuff takes a backseat to everyone else. With the backdrop of the passing of George H.W. Bush certain to be a part of the narrative – and with Donald Trump attending – this game should take on a different feel outside of the normal pomp and pageantry. Football-wise, Army wins in a walk. Navy has lost eight of its last nine games because the defense just can’t slow anyone down in key moments. It was rolled by Air Force in the first match this year against a fellow option team, and lost to Tulane to close out the regular season. Army does everything Navy can do, only better.”
Kevin McGuire (Athlon Sports): Army 20, Navy 13. McGuire writes on Athlon Sports, “As is usually the case when Army and Navy play, expect a game that is heavy on the running games with both teams relying on the option to keep the ball moving and the clock ticking. Statistically, Army and Navy have an even playing field running the ball on offense. Defensively is another story. Army is much better against the run, allowing 4.15 yards per rushing attempt this season while Navy is giving up 5.15 yards per attempt. That could spell disaster for Navy once again this season. This game will fly by, and Army will once again have the edge with Darnell Woolfolk and Kelvin Hopkins leading the ground attack.”
Aaron Taylor (CBS Sports): Army
Brian Jones (CBS Sports): Army
Rick Neuheisel (CBS Sports): Navy
Randy Cross (CBS Sports): Navy


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