And after that oh-so long bye week, we are back in action at Michie this weekend. The Tulane Green Wave makes the trip north this week after a bye week of their own. Hopefully our boys are rested and ready. I have no doubt that Coach Jeff Monken will ensure they are fully prepared and focused for the game.
Here are this week’s Keys to Victory against Tulane.
Force Two Turnovers
Since the offense can’t seem to hold onto the ball, it will fall to the defense to win the turnover battle. As we’ve said every week, it makes it so much more difficult to win as a triple option team when you drop the ball twice per game. Not to mention that it’s sloppy football.
Because the offense and special teams can’t seem to manage not committing fumbles, the defense will need to bail the team out… again. Luckily, this defense is already playing lights out, allowing just287 yards per game. We need them to step up and make up for the 2.5 fumbles/game that the offense is committing.
Stay Balanced on Defense
Tulane runs an interesting version of the triple option out of the spread. The Green Wave averages 273.3 yards/game rushing and 181.5 yards/game passing, so they are very much a run first team. However, their passing attack is legit, so Army’s defensive backs will need to stay on their toes while also being prepared for a run or a pitch play.
Bottom line: don’t sell out completely to stop the run or the pass because this offense is very much a dual threat.
— ArmyWestPoint Sports (@GoArmyWestPoint) October 2, 2019
Run to the Outside
Tulane’s defense is less of a shining star, allowing 340.3 yards per game, 193 of them passing and 147.3 rushing. The Tulane secondary is inexperienced but their defensive line is monstrous and will eat up any run up the middle. Army needs to run outside pitch plays in order to get the ball into space against the Tulane secondary. Hopefully by running and passing to the outside we can open up the middle and establish the Fullback Dive later in the game.
AFF is not opposed to running the Fullback Dive, but with the way the O-line has been playing, it might be difficult to get enough push up front.
Depth Chart (Tulane): QB Kelvin Hopkins & S Jaylon McClinton listed as starters. Jeff Monken didn’t commit to Hopkins starting at press conference today but he said the senior is healthy and practicing. Senior safety Cam Jones is out this week #ArmyFootball pic.twitter.com/3ubIatPJlh
— Black Knight Nation (@BKKnightNation) October 1, 2019
Play like an underdog
Army opens as a 3-point home underdog. It’s been quite a while since Army wasn’t favored at home, and that should piss these guys off. They have yet to play their best football in 2019, or even a complete game, and last week’s performance against Morgan State was actually embarrassing. The team needs to come out angry and play hard-nosed football for 60 minutes in order to get the win.
THE POLLS: Black Knights received 47 points in Coaches and 44 points in AP, 29th in both polls. 12 AP voters had #ArmyFootball in their Top 25 with John Bednarowski of Marietta Daily Journal ranking Black Knights the highest at No. 20.
? @RealJoshConklin pic.twitter.com/yMeryFahmN
— Black Knight Nation (@BKKnightNation) September 29, 2019
That’s all folks, the game is at noon on CBS Sports as expected. Make sure you stock up on your blood pressure medication because this will be a close one!