NCAA College Football Week 16 Picks - Army-Navy

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NCAA College Football Week 16 Amry-Navy Game

All times Eastern

Week 15: Rick: 4-4; Coin: 4-4
Cumulative: Rick: 106-99-2; Coin: 108-97-2

Saturday, December 14

3:00 pm Army vs. #23 Navy (-10 1/2, 40 1/2) - The Black Knights won't be going to a bowl game this season, so this is the finale of the current campaign. Army is 5-7 heading into this annual clash of military might, but there may not be much to the game if Army defenders can't contain the onslaught of Navy's triple option rushing attack, the best in the country.

Navy rushed for 360.8 yards per game, and, even though army is second nationally in rushing, they're well behind, averaging 311.7.

Navy has the edge in scoring, putting up an average of 39.3 points per game (10th in the nation), while the Black Knights only produced 30.3.

Defensively, Army may be a little better, but it's nearly even statistically. The Black Knights allowed 22.3 points per game on average, while the Middies gave up 24.2. The difference may be in the quality of opponents.

The Midshipmen come into the game an impressive 9-2, after a disappointing 3-10 showing in 2018. They enter the game ranked #23 in the CFP and #21 in both the AP and Coaches polls.

Army has won the last three meetings, but Navy won 14 straight prior to 2016.

Being an independent, Army played a hodgepodge of mostly irrelevant teams from various conferences, such as Morgan State, Western Kentucky, San Jose State, UMass, Hawaii. Their one standout game was a 24-21 double overtime loss at Michigan, but that was in week two. By September 21 the Knights were 3-1, but then lost five straight. They bounced back with big wins over UMass and VMI, but fell at Hawaii, 52-31, ending the season as the defense took a luau.

Navy is part of the American Athletic Conference (AAC), and played a number of teams that were ranked during the year. They lost at eventual conference champ Memphis, 35-23, but had victories over Tulsa, SMU, Houston and others in the conference. The topped Air Force, 34-25, whereas Army lost to the Falcons, 17-13. Their worst defeat came on November 16, when they were hammered at Notre Dame, 52-20, though that score was largely the result of four first half turnovers by the Middies. The Irish built a 38-3 lead at halftime and coasted home.

Taking note of that solitary disaster, Navy is unlikely to suffer a turnover bout again. They learned from their errors at Notre Dame and finished by beating SMU and Houston to close out the regular season. They also have secured a date with Kansas State to play in the Autozone Liberty Bowl on December 31.

Navy should dominate the ground game and emerge a decisive winner.

Coin Flip: Navy

Prediction: Midshipmen 38 Black Knights 17

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