Army Black Knights (2-1) at Tulane Green Wave (1-2)
- Start Time: 12:00 PM EST
- Location: Yulman Stadium, New Orleans, LA
- TV: CBSSN
- Audio: Here
- Weather: 87 with a 15% of rain at kickoff
- Line: Tulane -3, FPI Army 50.7% chance to win, O/U 44.5
The Black Knights are coming off of a loss where they were dominated by an Ohio State team that was bigger and more talented than them.
The offense could never get going and the defense couldn’t stop J.T. Barrett and the Buckeye offense to keep them in the game.
That loss doesn’t mean Army hasn’t looked really good this season because they have. One win coming in blowout fashion against Fordham and the other was a really impressive comeback against Buffalo.
A big issue the Black Knights will have is their depleted secondary. Jalen Sharp is out for the year with a torn ACL, Marcus Haytt hasn’t played a snap after being hospitalized over the summer for an unknown neurologic disorder, Rhyan England is most likely not playing after suffering a knee injury against Ohio State, and Elijah Riley hasn’t seen any action so far this year due to academic reasons and his status for Tulane is up in the air. The backups who get a chance to start will have to step up big time as Tulane is more than capable of passing it often even though they are an option team.
If Army wants to win, they themselves will have to complete some passes. Tulane has a really stingy run defense that held Navy under 200 yards on the ground. If Army can take the top off the Green Wave defense every once and awhile, it will open up space to run the option effectively. Look for wide receiver Jeff Ejekam and slotback Jordan Asberry to have big games catching passes.
Tulane lost last week to Oklahoma, they were tied 14-14 after the first quarter but after that, it was all Sooners, they scored 42 unanswered points winning the game 56-14.
For the Green Wave, this is a must-win game, if they lose they fall to 1-3 and their schedule really starts to ramp up with AAC play. If they can beat Army and get to 2-2, making a bowl will be easier, though still unlikely, than if they are sitting at 1-3.
Who is Tulane’s QB going to be? This question could cause a big problem for the Green Wave because both QB’s that have started this season are considered questionable. Jonathan Banks, their starter, had an upper-body injury against Navy and Johnathan Brantly left the Oklahoma game in the third quarter and didn’t return. Both QB’s practiced this week, but coaches are unsure if Banks can take hits to the ribs.
If Banks plays, Army is in big trouble, he is a game changer. He can efficiently run the option and isn’t afraid to pass either, throwing for 198 yards and three touchdowns in just about a game and a half.
Call me crazy, but I don’t see how Tulane is the favorite in this game, they have questions at quarterback and already lost to a triple option team in Navy. I guess home-field advantage and Army’s weak secondary might swing the spread in favor of the Green Wave but I don’t see them beating the Black Knights of the Hudson.
With that being said, I don’t expect Army to run away with this either, Tulane has a really good defense that has shown it can stop the option. But if this is the game Ahmad finally gets going with his throws, I can see Army winning by two touchdowns.
Tulane’s run defense is good, but Army’s is slightly better, they give up 151 yards on the ground per game. The Green Wave can pass better than Army can, which is why this game will be so close. It may come down to a field goal like the last time these two played when the Green Wave kicked a last-second field goal to beat the Black Knights at West Point.
Army 21-Tulane 17