1. Good quarterback play: Carson Williams doesn't have to be Tom Brady, but he can't be as bad as last year. Williams completed just 8-of-16 passes for 62 yards with four interceptions in last year's loss. But Williams looked good early on, leading Army all the way to Air Force's goal line on its opening drive. But he fumbled and Adam Zanotti returned it 98 yards for a touchdown. If Williams plays turnover free, Army has a chance.
2. Bring on the 'D': Army's been bringing it most of the year, before having lapses against Central Michigan and Georgia Tech. But Army's hard-hitting unit has had a week off to get it together. The Black Knights need a big effort from their 'D'. And expect them to get one. Army's unit always seems to come up in big spots. Keeping Air Force to 20 points will keep Army in the game.
3. Stop Chad Hall: Hall, the z receiver in Troy Calhoun's new system, has run all over opponents this season. Hall, a senior, has 847 yards and 11 touchdowns this season. Let's hope Hall doesn't do to Army what he did to Colorado State earlier this month.
4. Ditto Shaun Carney: Carney, also known as Jimmy The Greek, after predicting a 49-7 win before last year's Army game, is even dangerous in Calhoun's system.
He can run and pass. Carney is a very accurate passer, completing 93-of-151 passes for 1,097 yards and five touchdowns. Army has to bottle him up and, more importantly, pay him back for his bold prediction in 2006.
5. Running men: Army has to develop a running game against Air Force or it could be a long day. The Black Knights haven't scored a rushing touchdown in 18 quarters. Who is going to step up in the backfield?
6. Simply said: Army needs to score first. Playing behind on the road for this team is never a good omen. Here's an idea: How about a rushing touchdown on Army's first drive to put the Black Knights up 7-0.
7. Clever coaching: Stan Brock has to win the battle of headsets with Calhoun. Calhoun has the edge on Brock thus far, helping Air Force to six wins, many pundits predicted the Falcons would win three games. Calhoun appears to be more innovative than Brock.
But that doesn't matter if Brock's gang guts out a win in Colorado Springs.
Trimble has done his part this year and Anderson is coming along. But Army needs another option in this big game. Maybe it's Anderson or maybe tight end Justin Larson steps up. As long as someone other than Trimble does.