Ken, who will be attending the Army-Navy game for the 16th time but the first with his son Darren as our other correspondent for It’s Sports Magazine and Knights Sports Productions, and I both went to Drexel University and played on the last football team the Dragons fielded in November of 1973 which 45 years ago if you do the math.  Also, both of our father were World War II Navy veterans who survived to be the best examples the both of us had during their lifetime. It is so appropriate and fitting that this is posted on Pearl Harbor Day and I conclude with the Navy saying when one of their own goes to the Great Ocean in the Sky “Sailor, Rest you Oar.” 

119th Army Navy Football Game

The Real “America’s Game”

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

December 7, 2018

The annual football game between Army and Navy is the unofficial kickoff to the college bowl season which is also marked by the announcement of the Heisman Trophy winner for all of college football.  Traditionalists will argue that the Heisman is now more like the academy awards since most sports have morphed into sports entertainment.  Spell that “MONEY”.  I enjoy the Army-Navy game because it speaks to more than just the money.  It speaks of competition highlighting the character and sportsmanship of those who participate.  Make no mistake, participants can and will showcase their athletic skills, which is always part of the game, but it also highlights leadership and teamwork providing a real source of inspiration to all who attend and watch.

This year’s edition will feature a strong Army team bringing a 9-2 record to the event and boasting a seven-game win streak.  Plus, one of those setbacks was a 28-21 OT thriller against #4 playoff-bound Oklahoma in Norman.  Army has already accepted a well-deserved invitation to participate in the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl 12/22/2018 against the Houston Cougars. The Black Knights bring a punishing ground game that averages over 300 yards per game.  They do three things very well, run…run….and run some more.  Let’s not forget the Cadets defense too which is nationally ranked.

The competition traditionally displayed in this event is what makes it so special.  Proof of this can be seen in all the off-field pageantry, skits and cheering.  Army’s uniforms in this game will be saluting the Big Red One…First Infantry Division, which is the oldest continuously serving division in the regular army…. a very special group indeed.

Although Navy’s record is 3-9 this season, they have lost three games by only one point and have been competitive throughout their season.  Navy brings a potent ground game too and averages 288 yards per game which is pretty darn good.  It wasn’t too long ago that Navy was the team looking forward to a bowl appearance while guarding against an upset planned by their brothers from West Point but, if you follow this game like I do, you know that a win today for the Midshipmen is bigger than any bowl appearance.

May the best team win on Saturday but, keep this in mind, one team will come up on the short end of the score at the end of the game but know that there are no “losers” in America’s Game.  In service to the United States of America, these Black Knights and Midshipmen are all winners.

Submitted by Ken Podolak