Army Airforce Internet Availability

Saturday, November 7, 2009 links directly to their streaming radio partners, which saves me 80% of the trouble for the weekly internet availability post. Check the radio tab above for the link.

Normally I'm scrambling around the net late on Friday nights collecting potential streaming radio links... count on another service academy to provide easy radio access for internet viewers.

A link to free streaming video will be up Sat. - I'll try to post it early on during the Pitt/Syracuse game.

Update: the video link is up - enjoy.

Army Air Force Preview

Friday, November 6, 2009

GoArmySports has Army's capsule previews of the Air Force game.

ESPN has their stat previews up.

USA Today has a very good preview of the game... I won't excerpt because it's worth going there to read the whole thing.

Another good preview over at CFN:

Why to watch: There’s always a lot of outside factors brought into any football game between service academies, but after the tragedy at Fort Hood, it brings the reality of the players’ world front and center. These are football players on the field, but soon they’ll go off and serve their country; a fact that tends to get lost in the heat of the season. On the field, each team needs to come up with a win to keep bowl hopes alive. Army is on a two-game losing streak and has lost four of its last five games, with a stunning overtime win over Vanderbilt in the mix. With winnable games against VMI and North Texas coming up next, the Knights will likely get to six wins before dealing with Navy if they can beat the Falcons. For Air Force, coming up with a win is a must to get bowl eligible, and then it’s going to take a win over either UNLV or BYU in the final two weeks to be assured of a spot.

On the message board: Army @ Air Force provides a nice break from the usual vile poison that is espoused on that site... I'm still not going to advocate involvement in that forum, but this is about as pleasant as it gets.

Alejandro Villanueva is ESPN's focus his week, as Ali has an interview up on and will be featured as the big man on campus when ESPN broadcasts College Gameday from Colorado Springs.

Mobile Home

Army will meet Rutgers next October in a college football game to be played at the New Meadowlands Stadium.

I'm interested in a couple facets of this game.

Army will be the home team - just like they will be vs. Notre Dame at Yankee Stadium. I've got to wonder... will they be splitting the gate? 50/50 would be a pretty good deal for Army considering they can barely fill Michie Stadium's 40,000 capacity.

This may be the second college football game in the New Meadowlands - depending on the status of negotiations between the Meadowlands and two as-yet undetermined D1-AA teams.

Army/Rutgers is a decent matchup - certainly more winnable than next year's Notre Dame game @ Yankee Stadium, but outside of an upset Army win - the success of this game will be determined by how much profit Army football clears between TV and tickets sold.

Army's homes away from home for the next 5 seasons will be

Army at the Meadowlands
2010 vs Rutgers

Army at Yankee Stadium
2010 Notre Dame
2011 vs. Rutgers
2012 vs. Air Force
2014 vs. Boston College

These are great new football venues, and it should be a big selling point to recruits that they will be able to participate in these types of games - but it's not 1944 anymore, and the recruiting edge of the major college teams has become a sheer ledge that Army football will continue to have a difficult time climbing. These games will benefit recruiting for Rutgers, Notre Dame, Syracuse and Boston College a lot more than they will Army. At that, it's going to come down to the development and execution of Coach Ellerson's option to at least make these games memorable enough to continue the (hopefully) lucrative series.

I came across Andrew Clem's baseball blog where he lists the pro baseball stadiums that have been used for football -both college and pro. With lists of historic multiple use stadiums and diagrams of their layouts it's a very interesting site to say the least. Here's a look at the football layout at the old Yankee Stadium.

Just for fun let's compare it to the football layout of the new Yankee Stadium:

I'm not trying to get involved in the stadium architecture business, but new Yankee Stadium looks like a very tight fit for football. Are the dugouts and 3rd base line seats actually part of the end zones? It reminds me of grade school neighborhood football games where the lot next to my house had a little hill and a tree on it - which were both fair game, and you had to switch ends after every touchdown to make it fair.

No baseball stadium as a football venue is truly ideal... but looking back on my childhood football games... it's clear we should have tried much harder to maximize ticket profits.

Looking ahead to Army - Air Force

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Army football team won't be the only ones bringing the Awesome to Colorado Springs... ESPN will be on site to broadcast College Gameday on Saturday. The College Gameday site has the year-to-date news for both Army and Air Force as well as players to watch for the game.

It will be all eyes on Trent Steelman as the man to watch for Army.

I don't know if we really have to keep an eye on Steelman's pass game as his 55 attempts on the year and 1TD 2INT ratio isn't really all that newsworthy, but #8 is a force and will do his best to put his stamp on this game.

Last week against Colorado State, Air Force likewise felt free to air the ball out:

But a breakout performance it was for Air Force’s aerial attack when quarterback Tim Jefferson completed 7-of-12 passes for 111 yards and two scores in Saturday’s 34-16 victory over Colorado State at Hughes Stadium.

Rich Ellerson's press conference gives a look at what to expect from the Falcons.

"Air Force does some things out of different formations -- they are a little bit more plural than we are. They get into a few more looks and do a few more things, but the core of what they challenge you with, the most difficult things they do to defend, are things that we have a background in. Obviously we see (the option offense) routinely, but having that extra time to see it concentrated over a longer period of time can’t help but prepare you for the speed that’s going to happen on Saturday.”

The Army - Air Force game notes are up, lots of information there; of course this is a big game for a variety of reasons:


  • End Army's 12-game losing streak in games played after October.
  • End the Black Knights' two-game road losing streak.
  • Give the Black Knights four wins in a season for the first time since 2005 (4-7).
  • Avoid putting the Black Knights three games under the .500 mark for the first time this season.
  • Snap a three-game losing streak to the Falcons.
  • End Army's seven-game skid in Commander-in-Chief's Trophy contests.
  • Mark the first time Army won two road games in a season since 2005 (at Akron; at Air Force).
Get pumped. ESPN College Gameday, CBS College Sports Network national broadcast, and it's the first service academy game this year... exciting times for Army football.

Clearing the Army Football Links

Monday, November 2, 2009

The football team is off a bye week, and it was a pretty good time for a week off. The team travels to Colorado to play Air Force on Sat. who came off their own bye week this past weekend to thrash Colorado State.

The Falcons' offense got back on track Halloween night, gaining 382 yards in a convincing 34-16 win over the Colorado State University Rams.

The Falcons have out-rushed their opponents in all eight previous games this season, and made that nine straight games, grinding out 271 yards while allowing CSU to rush for 187 yards.

The Denver Post has some quick hits looking ahead to Army/Airforce

Army's sprint football team was undefeated until they ran into Navy's team in the sprint football championship game. Army scored first but lost 6-7 ending their successful season with a disappointing result. The sprint team doesn't get much press, but they had a great season, so kudos to them for their 6-1 record and great season.

Another unheralded Army football unit - the scout team has a player profiled.

Senior guard Karl Thompson plays in spot duty on special teams, but for a guy who has made football such a big part of his life, being a role player in D-1 is a small reward.

He's a scout-team player. Thompson isn't alone. He is one of seven "scout-team" seniors, who also help coach up younger players, mostly freshman, on the jayvee team.

It's a tough pill to swallow for Thompson, a 6-foot-2, 292-pound senior, who played on extra points and field goals in five games last season.

"I've been playing football since I was 12," Thompson said. "It's been a part of my life every day, every weekend and every second"»When I got into high school, we were very successful. Lots of winning. Now, I'm not a part of anything. I'm part of the team. I don't mean that in a bad way. But I'm not in there. I'm itching. It's instinctive for me to want to be out there."


"I'm old enough and mature enough to understand that's how life happens," Thompson said. "If I can still keep putting the pads on for the school I love, I'm happy doing it."

Nice story for a senior role player, but you gotta feel for the guy. A lot of guys get lost in the transition between pro/option coaches, but Karl Thompson continues on as a Black Knight because of his love for both school and sport.

As a college football fan I don't really following recruiting news all that closely, I don't know why. Somehow it takes away from the experience of following a team. I mean why get worked up and potentially let down by the decision of an 11th grader. Picking a college is one of the most important decisions in their lives at that point and for me to have any stake in that just seems creepy to me. I graduated from Pitt in 2000 - obviously, I'm a huge Pitt football fan - and some fans take recruiting pretty seriously. I know recruiting is a big part of any football program, it just never really interested me.

Following Army it's alittle bit of a different story - I'm relatively new to following Army, and I've always sort of wondered where West Point gets the athletes they have. I read Sal Interdonato's article on recent Army commit Michael Cermak.

“I fell in love with West Point,” Cermak told the Times Herald-Record. “It felt right. It felt like the perfect school for me. I love the quality of education and the prestige and reputation of West Point had and the quality of football. They are heading in the right direction.”
So what caliber of football player is Army getting in Cermak?
Cermak made 19 tackles in a 21-7 win over Knoxville Christian, the defending Tennessee 5A champions, last week. It doesn’t end there. Cermak, in his first game as a running back, rushed for 120 yards and three touchdowns. Two of the rushing touchdowns came out of Heritage’s “Wild Mountaineer” offense, where Cermak took direct snaps.
Last year, Cermak played one game at wide receiver and caught two passes for 70 yards and a touchdown.
Cermak was recruited by Ivy League schools Harvard and Princeton. He received a recruiting letter from Nebraska but pursued only West Point.

You always want to hear that your school is a recruit's first choice... but to have it be West Point - and pick Army over Ivy League teams, it's just such a different tack on college recruiting. It's a good story, and I guess that's just how it goes recruiting at West Point.

The Recent Best

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Vote: Greatest Army Football Player in the Last 50 Years

Rivals and is holding a poll asking: which is the top Army football player of the last 50 years?

The brackets are as follows:

Charlie Jarvis vs. Ben Barnett
Greg Gadson vs. Demetrius Perry
Bob Anderson vs. Lyle Weaver
Rollie Stichweh vs. Dick Nowack
Nate Sassaman vs. Steve Bogosian
Leamon Hall vs. Joe Caldwell
Bill Carpenter vs. Michael Wallace
Ronnie McAda vs. Mike Fahnestock

Make sure to check that one out. The player profiles and full bracket can be found here.

I'll take my time to review the candidates and vote, but I look forward to the Army football program growing that list of top players starting now and extending into the distant future.


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