Football Follies 2019: NCAA week 16 – The Game

Football Follies 2019: NCAA week 16 – The Game
In Memoriam: Navy halfback #27 Joe Bellino takes off down the field in the Army-Navy game on 30 Nov 1959, which Navy won 43-12. Bellino was awarded the Heisman Trophy in 1960, and after his active duty Navy service (1961-65) played for the Boston Patriots 1965-67. He spent many years as a businessman, active in charitable work, in Bedford, Massachusetts, and passed away in March of 2019. R.I.P., shipmate. British Pathe video, YouTube

Nothing gets between us and the Army-Navy game.  Well, except the news that Oklahoma will be playing LSU in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl for a shot at the championship match on 13 January.

We hear the participation trophy for the Sooners is already being cast.

OK, OK, we’ll have a better attitude as we get closer to the 28th.  Meanwhile, we’ve got the match of matches to get through, and a few other bowl season notices to issue for our Inner Circle.

Essay question for the week: who’s your pick for the Heisman?  No fair waiting until after the ceremony.

Trending: Is the Left suggesting that COVID-19 discriminates against blacks?

Game preview

We expect a lot of running.

It’s kind of hard to put more curlicues on that.  As long as Navy QB Malcolm Perry’s legs hold out, we’re going with the oddsnod to the Midshipmen of 6.5.

We note that Navy’s defense has been very effective against the run this year, ranking in the top 25 in most categories.  It’s substantially less effective against the throwing game; but then, see the opening point above.  Army doesn’t really have a passing game (and injury-prone starting QB Kelvin Hopkins is still reportedly questionable for Saturday).

Not that Navy’s is much to write home about.  It’s better for ALCON (“all concerned”) if Perry doesn’t try to throw much, as he gets intercepted pretty regularly.

Bill watch: Bills the Goat 36 and 37 prepare for battle. YouTube, AAC Campus Connect

Army had the advantage of a really good O-line last year, but has had to deal with a lot of injuries this year, and has had less success punching the run.  Against Navy’s very good D, the probabilities aren’t looking favorable.

Both teams, as usual, are mostly in the “Excellent” column when it comes to being penalty-free, although Army’s defense has some cleaning up to do.

Raining-ish and in the 50s for the 3 PM kickoff in Philly.

The unis are in for this year:

Navy’s backstory video is a fun walk down Memory Lane:

Army’s honoring 1st Cav with a very fine choice:

A couple of spirit spots from each side to get you in the mood.

Sing second, Navy!

Inner Circle bowl round-up

Just a preview of coming attractions.  The bowls in all their glory will be properly sliced, diced, and slavered over as the weeks advance upon us.

#4 Oklahoma will, as noted, meet #1 LSU in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl on 28 December.

#25 Oklahoma State plays Texas A&M in the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl on 27 December.

#23 Navy plays Kansas State in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl on 31 December.

Air Force plays Washington State in the Cheez-It Bowl on 27 December.

Virginia Tech plays Kentucky in the Belk Bowl on 31 December.

Nevada plays Ohio in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl on 31 December.

Wyoming plays Georgia State in the NOVA Home Loans Arizona Bowl on 31 December.

Other ranks

Div II’s hot-running Slippery Rock hosts Minnesota State on Saturday in the semi-finals.  Ferris State (which ended up as the #1 seed) will meet West Florida in the other game.  In Slippery Rock, PA, we figure the game-time conditions – mid-30s, winter mix precip (snow, sleet) – shouldn’t favor either team.  They’re both used to it.  Kickoff is at 12:30 PM Eastern; coverage on ESPN3.

GO NAVY!!!!!!!

BEAT ARMY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

J.E. Dyer

J.E. Dyer

J.E. Dyer is a retired Naval Intelligence officer who lives in Southern California, blogging as The Optimistic Conservative for domestic tranquility and world peace. Her articles have appeared at Hot Air, Commentary’s Contentions, Patheos, The Daily Caller, The Jewish Press, and The Weekly Standard.