Army 2011 Football Preview: LA Times

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Here's another late-summer preview from the L.A. Times.

Almost every preview has Army on the shy side of 6 wins and call the late season turn of games Army's obstacle to the postseason. This one is more of the same a brief look back to last season, offensive, defensive and special teams notes and a 2011 outlook.

 OUTLOOK: Coming off a solid season with a few key players back in the mix, the Black Knights are facing something they haven't dealt with in quite some time -- increased expectations. However, half of last year's starting unit has moved on, and coach Ellerson dialed up the intensity in the spring and summer camps to keep the focus level up. Fortunately for the Black Knights, their two biggest offensive stars return in Steelman and Hassin, which should help keep that option game in gear. On the other hand, the defense was hit hard by graduation, and that may show up on the scoreboard early on. Another tough back end of the schedule looms, as Army will close out the regular season against Air Force, Rutgers, Temple and Navy. In all likelihood, the new-look defense will determine whether the Black Knights win enough games to go bowling once again. 

I agree in thinking Army is capable of 4-5 wins. Army's bowl eligibility will likely come down to the last stretch run of games, but each of those games are away or at a neutral site, and three of the four games will be played on grass (all other Army games will be played on turf). Army will again play Navy after the bowl bids are handed out giving the Cadets one less chance to reach bowl eligibility. Considering these things as well as the level of competition up and down the schedule I think Army will have its hands full getting to 5 wins let alone 6.

Almost time for football season.



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