Head to head: Army vs. VMI

Next up for Army is VMI. ArmySports.com compares different critical team areas of Army and VMI and indicates which team has the edge.

ARMY
EDGE
AREA
VMI
EDGE
COMMENTS
 
Army rushing offense
vs.
VMI rushing defense
 
VMI has the No. 47 rushing defense in the FCS allowing about 131 yards a game. Keep in mind this was against opponents such as Presbyterian and Gardner-Webb. Linebacker A.J. Gross has 55 tackles for the Keydets. Army has the nation's 13th best rushing offense. Quarterback Trent Steelman (61 ypg) and slotback Patrick Mealy (50 ypg) lead the Black Knights in rushing.  
EVEN  
Army passing offense
vs.
VMI passing defense
EVEN  
Army has the worst passing offense, statistically, in the nation averaging just 58 yards per game. Ali Villanueva leads the Black Knights with 17 catches for four touchdowns. VMI is ranked 114th (FCS) in pass defense so Army should be able to at least throw the ball some on them.  
EVEN  
VMI rushing offense
vs.
Army rushing defense
EVEN  
VMI has an option offense, like Army, and is gaining 255 yards a game on average, good for second in the FCS. Running back Howard Abegesah leads the Keydets in rushing with 85 a game. He's had three games where he's gone over 100 and in two of those he went over 160. Last week against Air Force, Army suffered a devastating loss to their run defense when linebacker Stephen Anderson went down to a season ending injury. However, Army should be able to at least slow down VMI's running game.  
 
VMI passing offense
vs.
Army passing defense
 
VMI's passing attack is rated No. 117 out of 118 teams in the FCS. Like Army, they do not throw the ball much, preferring the run. Wide receiver Mario Scott has 12 catches and three touchdowns for the Keydets. Army has a solid passing defense, limiting their opponents to only about 170 yards per game. Safety Donovan Travis has six career picks for Army.  
Special Teams
 
Jeff Sexton has made 2-of-4 field goals this season for VMI. His longest kick came from 32 yards. Army's Alex Carlton has booted true on 13-of-17 field goals. His longest was from 51 yards. VMI's Mark Ray has a 39 yard punting average as does Army's Jonathan Bulls. Army has given up 2 punt and 1 kickoff return this season. VMI has given up one of each.  
EVEN  
Coaching
EVEN  
Both Army's Rich Ellerson and VMI's Sparky Woods have extensive head coaching experience. Ellerson was a winner at FCS Cal Poly previous to Army and Woods had success at Appalachian State and later coached at South Carolina.  
 
Intangibles
 
It's an Army home game and senior day at Michie Stadium. The Black Knights will be working to end a 17 game losing streak for games played after October. Army has the added benefit of having just played an option offense, Air Force. VMI has an option offense so they will be somewhat familiar with how to stop the option.  


PREDICTION: Army 38, VMI 10

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