Wake Forest will travel to West Point for the second time in three years, as it looks to move to 2-1 on the young season with a win over the Army Black Knights. Kickoff is at high noon from Michie Stadium, overlooking the 78 million gallon Lusk Reservoir. For those not making the trip to New York the game will be televised on CBS Sports Network.
Army currently sits at 0-2 on the year, with close losses to FCS Fordham, and barely FBS Connecticut. The Black Knights are led by sophomore quarterback Ahmad Bradshaw, who has mainly shown to be a big threat with his legs.
Manning the famous triple option attack, Bradshaw has racked up 272 yards on on just 36 carries. His arm, however, is a different story, as he is just 7/17 for 112 yards on the year.
The key, as always with these types of attack, is to limit the amount of yardage on the ground on first and second downs. This forces the offense into either a passing play, or a difficult running distance to keep the chains moving. The goal of the Army attack is to methodically pick up 3-4 yards a play, controlling the pace of play, time of possession, and limiting the amount of time the opposing offense has to score.
They have done a poor job of that so far through two games, resulting in the aforementioned 0-2 record. Unfortunately for Coach Monken the task doesn't get much easier vs. Wake Forest, as the Deacs currently rank fourth in the nation in time of possession at 36:33. The Deacs have also only allowed 21 first downs all season.
The Deacs are looking to bounce back from a tough 30-17 loss to the Syracuse Orange last week. In a game that Wake Forest dominated for the better part of two and a half quarters, a two touchdown loss is hard to swallow. I fully expect Coach Clawson and staff to get the team back on track and come out motivated to play.
Last season Army nearly knocked off the Deacs, leading 21-14 in the second half before Wake Forest scored 10 unanswered points to pull away with a 24-21 victory. Army ran for 340 yards, including 123 from quarterback Angel Santiago.
Wake Forest and Army have met 14 times before, with the Deacs winning 10 of those. It is an even 4-4 record in games played at Michie Stadium.
I am wildly optimistic this week for the game. The Deacs opened as a 2.5 point favorite on Sunday, but that line has grown to 6 across the board in Vegas.
I think the Deacs matchup pretty well with the Black Knights in terms of controlling the pace of play and keeping the option attack off the field. The offense has been pretty good for Wake Forest under sophomore John Wolford, and if he can limit the mistakes I like the chances of the Old Gold and Black.
I will take the Deacs 31-17 in a near flip of last week's score.