Duke/Army Game Notes

Friday, November 10, 2017

Army game notes (.pdf)

Duke game notes (.pdf)

One more chart of stats I liked was this one. 


Army 7-2

Army exorcised the demons in Colorado Springs on Saturday, and moved one step closer to the CIC trophy. Just by virtue of their being scheduled before the Army Navy game, Air Force had been the gatekeeper to the CIC trophy, and now having shut the falcons down and shut the Falcons out - Army moves on to play Navy in mid-December for the elusive trophy.

Ahmad Bradshaw elevated himself into the 2017 Top 10 in FBS rushing. Talk about an MVP performance - and a lot of those runs were designed QB keepers. It's as if the game plan was to roll into Colorado Springs, puke on their carpet and unleash the captain for 265 yards at 11.5 yards per carry. Check, check and check.

Top ten in FBS rushing is really something - add to that inclusion in West point's rushing single season rushing top ten.

    No.   Player            Year    ATT    AVG    YDS
    1.    Collin Mooney     2008    231    5.8    1339
    2.    Mike Mayweather   1990    274    4.9    1338
    3.    Carlton Jones     2004    209    6.1    1269
    4.    Trent Steelman    2012    241    5.2    1248
    5.    Raymond Maples    2012    223    5.4    1215
    6.    Mike Mayweather   1989    239    4.9    1177
    7.    Michael Wallace   2000    192    6.0    1157
    8.    Doug Black        1984    264    4.3    1148
    9.    Ahmad Bradshaw    2017    142    8.0    1132
    10.   Larry Dixon       2014    191    5.9    1118

Ahmad Bradshaw's season average is 125 yards per game. #17 needs 85 more yards to get his 2017 into Army's top 5 rushing seasons.

If I could show just one thing to help those who haven't been watching every Army football game visualize the Black Knights' success:

That's a lot of wins. It's enough to go bowling for the second year in a row. It's enough to spark the comparisons to 1996; and it's enough to put the CIC trophy in play. 

Tomorrow we have Duke coming up to a sold out Michie Stadium for senior day - Army hopes to go unbeaten at home for the first time since 1996.

Army is tied for third with several others for blocked kicks. 
37 penalties this season has Army into the top 10 for fewest penalties (4.11 penalties per game) which also translates to top top 5 for fewest penalties per game 
Army sits at 4th regarding time of possession , and 3rd in terms of fewest negative yard plays on offense.
Army has lost only two fumbles this year and sits tied for 6th for fewest fumbles for a team in 2017.

129th in passing and 28 pass ypg subtly implies that Army is a running team.

The job that Brent Davis has done in leafing through the playbook over the course of these first 9 games has been outstanding. I used to rave about how Air Force's offense was multiple (squared) They had multiple formations, they ran a variety of option looks and also tried conventional power run and they had a pretty filthy play action game. This is the first time I can remember being this impressed with how Army looked against Air Force. When you look and see the strides that Jeff Monken has taken with this team - keep in mind the style points they earned in this win at Colorado Springs - much of this team's swagger comes from Brent Davis' seemingly unbeatable offense.

Brent Davis is, of course, being mentioned for other FBS jobs.
I suppose that with this timely report on the 501(c)3 funding of service academy athletics now might be a good time to refresh Davis' contract. Let's hope that Davis' interest in GA Southern is a professional courtesy in line with his time with GA Southern as OC.

With the Air Force game we saw much more of the diamond formation and a few new wrinkles out of the flexbone. Some stuff didn't work. There was a new wishbone misdirection QB keeper that didn't have the time or space to gain yardage. I think that was stuffed for no gain right before Ahmad ripped off another long run for a first down inside Air Force's 20. It kind of opens my eyes to how much of a process it is to find a new edge and then find a place to try these things out in a game. Then blend these new schemes into the mix with the weekly offensive staples.

Even with Duke coming into this one with two weeks' prep time I am not so sure they will be able to bottle up Army's rushing attack. They saw plenty new last Saturday, they had a lot to digest from the first 8 games. Duke will still need to square up against Army's zone option game, and if they cover all of that then they can sit in amazement with Army fans on Saturday and sort out what Brent Davis has devised this week just for the Devils.

I cannot wait.

Army Air Force story, stats, highlights and replay

Army 6-2

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Story, Stats, Highlights, Replay

Army Temple Connectivity

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Army Temple stream can be found at the Radio link.


Army Temple Game Notes

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Army/Temple game notes are up.

Here are the game notes for Temple (.pdf).

Temple has been on my list for a good while now. Watching Army beat the Owls on their home field last year was nice, but I'll need another win in order to really make up for the losses of 2009 and 2010.


Army 5-2

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Update: Replay added below

I sensed last week that this one would come down to the razor's edge

End of the half Army caught the Eagles with their pants down - after delaying getting set - Army went spread with 4 wide and a wide open receiver to the near side... EMU wasn't ready and got a timeout called just as the ball was snapped. Now, instead of going with another hail mary to the end zone I think you at least try to kick for the points - that's why Army defers every coin flip... that would have been a great chance to score some points and get the ball back.

Late in the game as Eastern Michigan's D wore down a Darnell Woolfolk at 75% proved to be an irresistible force to movable object of Eastern Michigan's D. Woolfolk's return to the end zone highlights the job that the team of B backs has done in his absence - and as a unit during this game. If you look at Eastern Michigan's D in the 4th quarter they looked like a completely different team than the Eagles defense that was hootin and hollerin and jumping around during the first series of the game. As it turned out on Army's first possession Eastern spent a lot of energy on not bringing down fullbacks.

The Eastern Michigan defense read and reaction was good through 2nd quarter and Army really found themselves in a chess game offensively. It was the QB follow that kind of cracked the code for Army, then it was the freeze counter for Army's first score. There were some big plays where Ahmad Bradshaw kept the ball because all of his pitches were closed off. Bradshaw ended the day with a robust 19 carries for 171 yards.

Army had a little bit of luck on the interception..it looked to me like two guys jumped on Christianson's interception with no offsides call. Even if Army got back onside - it was mantioned that EMU QB Roback had to put his shoe back on and might had a flat tire on the intercetion play.

In the end, Eastern Mich was upended running a option-like pitch play when they had been running for something like 6 yards per rush. Good luck with that play call. I could give a shit if a team stands with Army for the Alma Mater, that's not disrespect - Eastern Michigan has a lot of stuff to figure out, so I hope Eagles coaching staff spent the time coaching football. Ultimate disrespect is having the stones to give a one-off option look to Army with the game on the line. That is a LOT of belief in yourselves for a team who is coming in at 2-3. EMU HC Chris Creighton's postgame interview looks like it was filmed in the pit of despair. I was looking forward to that one since Eastern Michigan University disappeared so quickly - I just wanted to make sure they were alright.

Really, Eastern Michigan got caught in a sucker's game. Did they want to try Army in Overtime? I guess not.
I don't think the call to go for it spoke to Eastern Michigan's fear of the Army offense (4/4 red zone in this one) as much as it spoke to their belief that they could bite off another 4 yards for the win. I was concerned about this one up until I saw the designed pitch - easy solve for James 'Gibby' Gibson and he gets low on the ball carrier to end Eastern Michigan's hopes about 5 inches short. The amount of hubris involved to not only go for the 2 point conversion, but to call a timeout and draw up what they think it is Army does - to what?.. prove a point?.. show off their coaching chops?.. anyway, the roll out pitch was a no go and Eastern Michigan is now 1-8 against Army all time.

On offense it was again Ahmad Bradshaw's game as he converted time and again in big spots. If we rely on the above metaphor that Army's offense plays a chess game, then Bradshaw is their Kramnik.
Gibby's tackle saved the day and James Nachtigal had a game high 13 tackles for the Cadets. I can't believe EMU tried to beat Army with a roll out pitch look. Their bread and butter down there is a pick pass play - maybe there wasn't enough room to run that series when going for 2, but you have to find a better answer than trying to beat Army at their own game. That move away from their tendency cost them the game in one play.

Other Eastern Michigan tendencies that were dismantled during this one

- there was no QB punt
- Army didn't go three-and-out during this one despite EMU's 5.6 per game average
- EMU scored on a fade, but it wasn't off crossing routes.
- 3/7 on 3rd downs meant the Eagles rose above their 28% 3rd down

Once again Eastern Michigan played to within a score, but came up a few inches short.

Here's your Eastern Michigan/Army story, statshighlights and replay.


Eastern Michigan Army

Saturday, October 14, 2017

EMU Army stream is up and running.

Check the above Radio tab for a link.


Army Eastern Michigan Game Notes

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Army has available their game notes for Eastern Michigan.

Eastern Michigan's notes are here.

The pressure is on for Eastern Michigan. The Eagles are currently awash in a 3 game losing streak with their upcoming game at West Point being their third straight road game.

Eastern Michigan hasn't won since September - those two wins coming against Rutgers and Charlotte. The Eagles' record of 2-3 leaves them looking for answers, but in terms of what to expect... I expect to see all the things that they do that has been successful to this point:

Eastern loves the post corner 'X' pick play in the red zone.
Eastern has a tendency to pooch punt with their QB.
Considering their 50% effectiveness on 4th down conversions it seems like the Eagles have a lot of success on their 4th down plays. How many teams can you recall that have a QB who leads the team in punting average?
Those tactics may manifest from an offense that converts only 28% of 3rd downs.
On the other side of the ball - Eastern Michigan averages 5.4 three-and-outs per game. Needless to say, unless they are +6 turnovers Army can't afford to go three-and-out 5 times.
There have been a lot of back shoulder throws where the receiver has the opportunity to turn his body on the defender and attack the ball for a completion.
The Eagles have played every game within a touchdown this year. - their three losses come by a combined 16 points.

It's a home game, the Eagles win-loss record looks less than impressive, and Eastern has pretty much been a patsy for as far back as I can remember. Add in EMU's field position gamesmanship, and their surprisingly stingy defense this one may end up being the trap game that I thought Rice would be.


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