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Army (3-8) vs. Navy (4-7)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, December 10th, 2:30 p.m. (et)

FACTS & STATS: Site: FedExField (82,000) -- Landover, Maryland. Television: CBS. Home Record: Army 3-1, Navy 2-3. Away Record: Army 0-7, Navy 2-4. Neutral Record: Army 0-0, Navy 0-0. Conference Record: Army 0-0, Navy 5-3. Series Record: Navy leads, 55-49-7.

GAME NOTES: One of the most storied rivalries in all of sports adds another chapter this Saturday, as the Army Black Knights square off against the Navy Midshipmen at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland.

Navy holds a 55-49-7 advantage in the all-time series with their military academy rivals, and the Midshipmen have captured 12 of the last 14 meetings, including the past nine. The matchup will feature two of the best rushing attacks in the nation. Both coaches, Army's Rich Ellerson and Navy's Ken Niumatalolo, are graduates of Hawaii. Ellerson has yet to beat Navy in his career.

Army enters the game at 3-8 after losing to Temple, 42-14, its last time out. The loss to the Owls was the third in a row for the Black Knights. Army's biggest triumph this season came in week three over a bowl-bound Northwestern team.

Army, like its counterpart, operates a triple-option offense that generates the highest output of any team in the country. The Black Knights began to struggle when starting quarterback Trent Steelman went down with an injury, which caused him to miss a considerable amount of time. Steelman returned briefly in the Temple game and is expected to see action against Navy. Raymond Maples leads the team with 984 yards on the ground this season. Malcolm Brown, Larry Dixon, and Jared Hassin have all logged significant carries as well.

With Steelman battling injury, Angel Santiago saw time at quarterback. Neither of the two were asked to throw the ball much, as Army had the nation's least productive passing attack with just 48 yards per game. The offense has still been productive despite being very predictable. Army averages 398.9 yards of total offense per game in putting up 25.2 points per outing.

Defensively, the Black Knights are ranked 48th in the nation with 363.8 yards of total offense allowed per game. Steve Erzinger is one of the country's best linebackers as he has racked up 92 tackles over the course of the year. Army gave up 414 yards to Temple in its last outing, but severely hampered the offenses of Rutgers, Air Force and Fordham in the three previous games.

Navy began the year with a pair of wins before losing six straight to wipe out any hopes of playing in a bowl game. The Midshipmen still played with maximum effort late in the year as they took down Troy and SMU before losing a close one to San Jose State its last time out. Navy's rushing attack is ranked fourth in the nation, while its passing attack is next-to-last, behind Army. The Midshipmen offense is ranked 43rd in the nation in total offense with 406.1 yards per game, and 47th in scoring at 29.9 points per tilt. Navy has been held under 400 total yards in its last two outings.

Quarterback Kriss Proctor is the primary weapon in the Navy arsenal as he has rushed for 817 yards and thrown for 774 more with 19 total touchdowns. The senior has yet to lose to Army in his career.

Fullback Alexander Teich uses his punishing style to bulldoze defenders, and he is currently second on the team with 790 rushing yards despite missing a game due to suspension. Gee Gee Greene and John Howell are both used often as well to keep opponents on their toes.

Navy's defensive unit has been sub par at best this season, as foes have gained an average of 417.4 yards of total offense and scored 29.6 points per game. In its last outing, Navy allowed San Jose State to gain 465 yards. Navy's effort against the run has been strong of late, which will come in handy as it prepares to counter the nation's top rushing attack. The Midshipmen have held their last three opponents under 140 yards on the ground.

Matt Warrick leads the Navy defense with 94 tackles and seven pass breakups. Jabaree Tuani leads the team with 12 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks. Tra'ves Bush, Kwesi Mitchell and Chris Ferguson are tied for the team lead with two interceptions apiece.

Although Navy has been in charge of this series of late, Army has a very good chance to come out of this year's matchup with a win. Current facts suggests that both defenses will have trouble stopping the other's offense. Proctor will have his work cut out for him whether Steelman or Santiago is taking snaps, but one thing is for sure...both teams will play until the very end in this one.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Navy 34, Army 31

12/07 12:58:23 ET