This Saturday, the (4-6) Army Black Knights will travel to Amherst, MA to take on the (1-10) Massachusetts Minutemen. Kickoff will be at Noon EST inside Warren McGuirk Alumni Stadium. Neither of these teams has had the season that they originally wanted, but they will still be looking to pick up momentum against one another.
The Black Knights are coming into this one after taking down UCONN, 34-17. Army had it rolling on the offensive side of the field, as they continued to run the ball down the Huskies' throat. They will need to play with that same aggression if they want to challenge the Minutemen on the road.
UMASS is entering this matchup after falling to Texas A&M, 20-3. The Minutemen didn't consistently move the ball in that game, as their offense let them down. They will have to efficiently score the ball against Army if they want to pick up their second win of the season.
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Can Army Show Up on the Road?The Army Black Knights have won three of their last five games, as they snapped their two-game losing streak against the UCONN Huskies last week. On offense, they are scoring 27.9 points per game and averaging 384.7 total yards. This is the 73rd most points scored per game and the 72nd most yards. They have struggled to move the ball through the air this season, though. The Black Knights are only throwing for 82.9 passing yards per game, which is the 130th least in the country. Tyhier Tyler will start at quarterback, as he has thrown for two touchdowns and one interception this season. Army rarely throws the ball, as they only attempted one pass against the Huskies last week. They like to keep the ball on the ground, as they are running for 301.8 rushing yards per game. This is the second most in the country, as this is the most efficient way for them to move the ball. Tyler also leads Army in rushing yards, as he has recorded 500 yards and nine touchdowns this season. Tyson Riley will also get a few touches in this one, as he has run for 435 yards this season and scored two touchdowns.
On defense, the Army Black Knights have shown that it isn't easy to consistently move the ball against them. They are surrendering 24.6 points per game and giving up 379.2 total yards. This is the 50th least amount of points allowed per game and the 70th least amount of total yards. Their secondary has continued to carry this defense, as they have been very tough to throw against this season. They are only allowing 175 passing yards per game, which is the 10th least in the nation. Unfortunately, they have not been as strong against the run. They are allowing their opponents to run for 204.2 yards per game, which is the 120th most in the country. Leo Lowin has continued to lead the way for the Black Knights on the defensive side of the field. He has recorded 81 total tackles, three sacks, and one forced fumble this season. Last week, he recorded seven total tackles against the Huskies.
Injury Report: Tyrell Robinson (Undisclosed) is questionable for Saturday.
Can UMass Get Win #2?The Massachusetts Minutemen have not had the season that they were hoping for, as they have now lost eight games in a row. On offense, they are scoring 13 points per game and averaging 268.5 total yards. This is the 130th least amount of points scored per game and the 129th least amount of yards. They have struggled to consistently move the ball through the air, as they have relied on their rushing attack. The Minutemen are currently throwing for 114.4 yards per game, which is the 126th least in the country. Brady Olson will start at quarterback, as he has thrown for two touchdowns and six interceptions this season. He will look to get the ball to George Johnson III, as he has recorded 364 yards and a touchdown this season. He is also averaging 14 yards per catch, as he is a downfield threat. UMass is also averaging 154.2 rushing yards per game, which is the 66th most in the country. Ellis Merriweather is the Minutemen's lead back, as he has recorded 526 yards and three touchdowns this season.
On the defensive side of the field, UMass continues to give up chunk plays and points. They are currently allowing their opponents to score 29.9 points per game and they are giving up 367.7 total yards. Their secondary has continued to clamp down, but their front seven has had a difficult time stopping the run. The Minutemen are currently allowing 185.1 passing yards per game, which is the 15th least in the country. They have made it difficult for their opponents to move the ball through the air, but they have struggled against the run. Massachusetts is allowing 182.6 rushing yards per game, which is the 104th most in the NCAA. Jalen Mackie continues to lead the way on the defensive side of the field. He has recorded 79 total tackles this season and 3.5 sacks. Last week, he had eight total tackles and a sack against the Texas A&M Aggies.
Injury Report: Tim Baldwin Jr. RB (Undisclosed), Jermaine Johnson Jr. WR (Undisclosed), and Rico Arnold WR (Undisclosed) are all listed as out indefinitely.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
I will be taking the Army Black Knights in this game and I will lay the points. (-20.5). They are the better overall team on both sides of the field, as I see them running the ball all over UMass. The Minutemen have continued to struggle on the defensive side of the field and they aren't great against the run. They are currently allowing 182.6 rushing yards per game, which is the 102nd most in the country. Army will keep the ball on the ground for the majority of this game and continue to find the end zone. They are running for the second most rushing yards per game, as they have one of the best rushing attacks in the country. Army is also scoring the 73rd most points per game and averaging the 72nd most total yards. The Minutemen won't be able to slow them down, as they will slowly pull away throughout this game. The Army defense will also be able to shut down UMass, as they have struggled to consistently score this season. UMass is only scoring 13 points per game, which is the 130th least in the nation. They won't find the end zone very often in this game and the Black Knights will blow them out.
Pick the Army Black Knights and lay the points (-20.5).
Full-Game Total Pick
I will be taking the under (45.5) points in this matchup, as both teams will keep the ball on the ground, which will keep the clock constantly moving. Neither of these teams will have enough possessions to push this total over the number. I also see UMass struggling to consistently score in this game. The Army defense is currently allowing the 50th least amount of points per game and the 70th least amount of yards. They will continue to load the box and stop the run against the Minutemen. This is going to be a one-sided game, as UMass won't score enough points to push this total over the number. They are only averaging 13 points per game and they can't move the ball through the air. The Army secondary will completely shut down their passing attack, as they will have to consistently punt throughout this game. Army is the better defensive team and they won't allow UMass to score enough points to push this total over the number.
Take the under (45.5) and expect both teams to keep the ball on the ground for the majority of this game.