Army Black Knights vs. Eastern Michigan Eagles-Preview, TV, Betting and More

Army Black Knights (5-2) at Eastern Michigan Eagles (4-4)

  • Start Time: 12:00 PM EST
  • Location: Rynearson Stadium, Ypsilanti, MI
  • TV: CBSSN
  • Line: EMU -1
  • FPI: Army 56.9%
  • O/U: 49
  • Series: Army 7-1, 3 in a row

Army

The Black Knights are coming off a thrilling double overtime victory over Miami (OH). In that game, Army didn’t have starters QB Kelvin Hopkins (hip), S Gibby Gibson (upper body), and WR Kjetil Cline. If they had two of those three, I don’t see that game going to overtime, let alone two.
With that being said, Army didn’t look bad with Cam Thomas at QB and Cam Jones at safety.
Offensively, they moved the ball just like normal in the first half. Long sustained drives that led to points, is the recipe for Army success.  The second half that all changed and nothing worked, but they got it together in overtime.
As far as the season goes, they average 404.7 yards per game, 318.3 on the ground and 86.4 through the air. With Kelvin Hopkins in, that number is over 100 passing yards per game.
Assuming Hopkins will be back under center come Saturday afternoon, the Army offense should be fine, the EMU defense is suspect against the run game.
On the defensive side of the ball, Army should be getting their “quarterback”, safety Gibby Gibson, back. He is now in the role that Rhyan England had last year, calling out plays and reading the opposing offense. You could tell they missed him when the Miami (OH) running back would gash them running a wheel route down the field.
Look for plays like that to be contained if Gibson is back on the field.

Eastern Michigan

Eastern Michigan > Purdue > Ohio State
That’s how this college football thing works right?
Outside of beating Purdue to open the season, the Eagles are almost identical to what Army was in 2015. They’ve played a lot of close games and come up on the wrong side of them in most of them. Their four losses this year have been by a combined 16 points. This team is better than their .500 record might suggest.
Last week they demolished a sub-par Ball State team to win back to back games for the second time this year.
Offensively they average 29.5 points per game while picking up 399 yards.
Their QB Tyler Wiegers has thrown only one interception this season and has eight touchdown passes.
The offense should be able to keep the Eagles close but it’s on the defensive side of the ball that they should be worried about.
They give up 213.6 rushing yards a game, sure that’s below Army’s average but they also haven’t faced a rushing attack like Army’s. They will be susceptible to big chunk plays the Army slots and b-backs.

Prediction

This game was a thriller at Michie last season, Gibby Gibson made the huge stop when EMU went for two and the win to give the Black Knights a 28-27 victory.
I don’t completely understand why EMU is favored in this game given how bad their defense is against the run, but I don’t make the odds *shrug emoji*.
Army is one win from bowl eligibility (six FBS wins before the two FCS opponents), and I think they will get that win by pulling away late in the game with big runs by the b-backs.
Army will be bowling for a third straight year… wow.
Army 35-Eastern Michigan 21
 

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