The regular season isn’t over yet. There’s still one last piece of business to attend to and it may be the biggest game of the season. It’s time for Army-Navy.
This year will be the 120th meeting between these two storied rivals. While the bowl games have already been decided, there will be plenty on the line on Saturday besides just pride.
Here is everything you need to know for Army-Navy.
When: 3 p.m., Saturday
Where: Lincoln FInancial Field, Philadelphia, Pa.
How to watch: CBS
A quick season recap
Navy enters this game ranked No. 23 in the final College Football Playoff rankings after earning a 9-2 record. They were in the running for the Group of 5’s New Year’s Six bowl bid up until the final week before championship week when Memphis wrapped up the division. The Midshipmen’s lone blemishes on the season were a loss to the Tigers that, in the end, cost them the division and a one-sided defeat at the hands of Notre Dame. They will play the Liberty Bowl on Dec. 31 against Kansas State, the only team with a win over a playoff team this season.
This will be the final game of the season for Army who is 5-7 after last week’s loss to Hawaii. But wait, if Army wins this game, won’t they have six wins? Yes, but the rule for bowl eligibility is not technically not six wins, rather a team has to win 50-percent of its schedule which Army will not. It has not been a bad season for Army so much as it has been a frustrating one. SIx of their seven losses have been by single digits including a three-point loss to Michigan in the Big House.
Army has won the last three meetings
After Navy enjoyed a 14-game win streak against the Black Knights, the longest streak between the two rivals, Army has responded with three straight wins of its own. All three games had a margin of victory of seven points or less, the narrowest of which was a 14-13 win in 2017.
The Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy is on the line
The Commander-in-Chief Trophy is the rivalry trophy shared between the three service academies. Army is the current holder of the trophy, but they cannot win it outright after losing to Air Force earlier in the year. Navy beat Air Force which means they have a chance to reclaim it with a win over the Black Knights.
Navy currently has the longest drought as the Midshipmen have not won the trophy since 2015. Air Force last had it in 2016.
Should Army win on Saturday, the academies will be in a three-way tie and Army will retain the trophy as the current holder.
This game will feature the top two rushing offenses in the nation
Both Army and Navy run the option offense which means a whole lot of running and not much passing offense. When you rely that much on the ground game, you better be able to do it well and both of these teams do.
The Black Knights enter this game with the second-best rushing offense in the country with 311.7 yards per game. There is only one team that averages more and that team just so happens to be their opponent. Navy boasts 360.8 yards per game on the ground, easily the top rushing attack in the nation.
Army and Navy also rank 129th and 128th respectively in passing offense so there is no real distinct advantage there. Offensively, these teams appear to be about as even as you can be. The advantage then is on defense where Navy has the edge.
The MIdshipmen have held their opponents to 109.7 yards per game on the ground this season, the 17th best rush defense in the nation. Army’s defense ranks 52nd with 144.1 yards per game.
Both teams are going to look good
Here is a look at the uniforms for each team. Army really brought it with the video. Nice touch.
MORE NCAA NEWS: