Rice Owls (0-0) vs. Army Black Knights (0-0)
- Start Time: 6:00 PM EST
- Location: Michie Stadium, West Point, NY
- TV: CBSSN
- Line: Army -23.5
- FPI: Army 95.7%
- O/U: 50
- Series: Rice leads 4-3 with one tie
The Owls are coming off a 2-11 season where they won their first game against Prairie View A&M and their last game against Old Dominion.
They return six starters on offense but will have a new QB in redshirt freshman Willy Green or senior Tom Stewart. The strong point of their offense is their wideouts. They have Austin Trammell and Aaron Cephus who combined for 102 catches, 1,197 yards, and 8 TDs last season.
Rice also likes to go extremely slow and run the ball but having these two out wide will certainly test guys like Elijah Riley and Javhari Bourdeau.
Defense has been the weak point of the Owls team for a while now, they were 125th in defensive S&P+ last season. They are still really young and will improve this season even if it’s just a little bit.
It’s no secret that Rice is still in a massive rebuild but that doesn’t mean they can’t surprise someone like they did ODU last season. Army needs to take the Owls seriously and not look ahead to Michigan.
Army football is back and expectations are higher than ever. #HopForHeisman has been all over “Army Twitter” and some fans are expecting an undefeated season.
This game is important, last season they came out slow against Duke and got beat. Coming out slow against Rice may not spell doom for the Black Knights but it will certainly have some people worried for the following week against Michigan.
Kelvin Hopkins is the key to the offense, if he is making the right reads and making throws, the offense is unstoppable, if he isn’t doing those things, the offense is slowed down to a stop.
It’ll be interesting to see the production out of the fullback position. It’s Connor Slomka’s job now and there’s a ton of inexperience behind him. If they can still get 3-4 yards each time they get the ball, Army will be just fine. If they can’t going, they’re going to have some problems.
The defense is led Cole Christensen and Elijah Riley. Army’s defense should be able to hold this Owls team in check, but watch for the play calling from new DC John Loose.
This should be a win for the Black Knights, expect Rice to hang around for the first quarter or even the first half as Army knock the rust off. Once the second half rolls around, look for Army to pull away and win by a big margin.
Army 42-Rice 17