Army hungry for more wins

Most teams with a 3-5 record are fighting for respectability, maybe just playing out the string, but not Army. This season still means a lot to the Black Knights. For one, Army is coming on strong, looking as good as they have in a long time. There is another reason why the black and gold have so much to play for.

Something called the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy. Army can win its first CIC since 1996 with wins over Air Force and Navy. The road to the CIC begins when the Black Knights host Air Force (6-2) on Saturday.

"(A win over Air Force) would be big," Army coach Stan Brock said earlier this week. "To begin with, it would be another victory in a row and proof that we are working hard. Obviously, to beat another academy is huge. I don't think you need to put that kind of pressure on anybody though. We just need to go out and have a great (practice) Tuesday. That is what our goal is now. "

Air Force smoked Army 30-10 in Colorado Springs last season and the Black Knights went on to lose to Navy 38-3. That was last year. After an 0-4 start, Army has proved it could be on the way to legitimacy.

The Black Knights have won three of four games. The one loss, a 27-24 heartbreaker at Buffalo in overtime two weeks ago, should have been a win. It would be a surprise as well as a disappointment if Army doesn't at least play with Air Force and Navy (5-3).

Air Force is a young team, one many pundits picked to finish at the bottom of the Mountain West standings. The Falcons have proved them all wrong. Air Force has won three games in a row and that's not the only momentum the Falcons have.

Air Force leads the all-time series with Army 28-13-1. The Falcons have won 17 of the last 19 games from Army. The Black Knights' last win against Air Force came in 2005 in Colorado Springs. It marked Army's first win at Falcon Stadium since 1977. Army is 2-16 at Falcon Stadium all-time, but 9-9 at home.

Army will be with what Air Force brings to the table, it's high-flying triple option. The Black Knights have gone to an option scheme, but with all due respect, it isn't as smooth as the Falcons'. That doesn't mean Army can't stop it.

The Black Knights' hard-hitting defense has led the charge on the banks of the Hudson. Army has held three of its last four opponents to 13 points or less. The Black Knights beat Louisiana Tech 14-7 last week at Michie Stadium. Even more impressive, Louisiana Tech managed seven points, despite taking over possession in Army territory five different times. "We've learned to trust each other more and more," Army linebacker Stephen Anderson said. "Being out here every week every practice, we know how each other plays. We're getting big plays for everyone, not just the linebackers or the defensive line or the defensive backs. Everybody is coming up with big plays at key times and it's easy to feed off of that." Top Stories