Top 25 NCAA Football Games in 2012: #24 Army vs. Navy 12/8/12

Last Updated: August 4th, 2012 by Adam Markowitz (Bankroll Sports Columnist)
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2012 Top 25 College Football Games of the Year
#24 Army Black Knights @ Navy Midshipmen

Army vs. Navy (-3.5)

Army-Navy Football GameYou’re not going to find a better matchup with more historical significance than the annual Army/Navy Game, and this is going to be the 113th battle between these two military powers on the gridiron. Navy leads the current series 56-49-7, and the domination of the Middies has been present over the course of the last 10 years, all of which have been won by the Naval Academy. This is going to be another frustrating year for both of the service academies on the football field in all likelihood, but this could also be the game that determines the winner of the Commander-in-Chief Trophy for the team that has the best annual record against the other service academies. Especially knowing that this is a standalone game on the schedule, its pageantry, pomp, and circumstance is definitely worthy of it being called one of our Top 25 matchups for the 2012 college football season regardless of whether this will be the cleanest played game in the world or not.

Army Black Knights vs. Navy Midshipmen Picks & Info
Army Black Knights vs. Navy Midshipmen Date: Saturday, December 8th
Army Black Knights vs. Navy Midshipmen Location: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, PA
Army Black Knights vs. Navy Midshipmen Spread: Navy Midshipmen -3.5

The poor Black Knights have only been to one bowl game since 1996, the 2010 Armed Forces Bowl, and this year really doesn’t seem like it has all that much promise either. QB Trent Steelman is back, and he might be the best quarterback running the triple option in the country at this point. When he was out of the lineup last year for Army, the team just had zero chance of passing the ball at any point. The ground game has a lot of its power back from last year, led by RB Raymond Maples, who regularly touches the ball at least 10 times in every game in spite of the fact that he is a slotback and not really a traditional rusher. The problem that the Black Knights have is that they are incredibly thin at the offensive line spots. Everyone has to know exactly what their role is on the offensive line and keep to their assignments, and if those assignments are blown, the play being ran is in a heck of a lot of trouble. With just three returners on this side of the ball, it could be tough to get some traction. That being said, this is the final game of the year and not the first game of the year, and the potential is definitely there for this makeshift OL to become more of a strength of the team by the time December rolls around.

Army Black Knights vs. Navy Midshipmen Past Games (Since 1995)
2011: Navy 27 – Army 21
2010: Navy 31 – Army 17
2009: Navy 17 – Army 3
2008: Navy 34 – Army 0
2007: Navy 38 – Army 3
2006: Navy 26 – Army 14
2005: Navy 42 – Army 23
2004: Navy 42 – Army 13
2003: Navy 34 – Army 6
2002: Navy 58 – Army 12
2001: Army 26 – Navy 17
2000: Navy 30 – Army 28
1999: Navy 19 – Army 9
1998: Army 34 – Navy 30
1997: Navy 39 – Army 7
1996: Army 28 – Navy 24
1995: Army 14 – Navy 13

The Naval Academy took a massive dive last season down to just 5-7, but this year, the hope is at least somewhere there that it can get back to a bowl game this season. QB Trey Miller is going to likely be leading the charge, and slotbacks Gee Gee Greene and John Howell will be returning as well. The problem is that QB Kriss Proctor is out, and FB Alexander Teich, who has been a staple at the head of the wishbone for the Middies for years, has departed as well. That’s going to leave two massive holes in the main parts of the Navy offense. The Midshipmen have a worse offensive line position than the Black Knights do. There are only three experienced offensive linemen that are returning to this team. With a little more passing, and a significantly easier schedule after the first two weeks of the year though, there is no doubt that this could be the game that makes or breaks a bowl campaign for the Midshipmen.

Army/Navy Game Free Picks^^: Could this be the year that the Black Knights break the dreaded losing streak to Navy? The opportunity is most certainly going to be there for them to do so. This time of year, it’s all about value, and while you have the opportunity to take the points, we suggest that you do so. By the time that his game rolls around, both of these teams might have very comparable records, and in the end, the Black Knights might end up being favored, especially if there is a bowl game on the line for them.

^^Please Note: The Army/Navy Game picks listed above on our sports betting blog are made by our staff writers. These football picks are based upon the betting lines listed on 8/4/12 and do not reflect the actual expert handicapping picks at Bankroll Sports. Click Here to receive our premium expert handicappers NCAA Football Picks for the 2012 campaign.

You can purchase our premium Army/Navy Game picks from our experts on Saturday, 12/8

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