The Army Black Knights head into their second regular season game as NCAA football betting favorites versus the Rice Owls on Saturday, September 10th at Michie Stadium in West Point, New York. Here are the odds for fans betting on college football:
Rice +10 (-110) 52½ (-110) +315
Army -10 (-110) 52½ (-110) -380
The Black Knights have already slain one parliament – which is odd since owls tend to be solitary – when they defeated Temple 28-13 on September 2nd. They say that the best offense is a good defense and Army successfully put that to the test – sort of. Former LB Andy Davidson was moved to fullback for his sophomore year and ran for 121 yards and two touchdowns in his first outing in his new offensive position. Three other Black Knights gained at least 50 rushing yards, and Army put up a total of 329 yards on the ground. Ahmad Bradshaw and Chris Carter (not related to the X-Files creator) shared QB duties, with the former taking most of the snaps. Army’s triple-option attack wreaked havoc on last season’s best American Athletic Conference defense. Now the Black Knights are the NCAA football favorites to do the same to Rice’s own parliament.
The Rice Owls fell to the Western Kentucky University Hilltoppers 14-46 on September 2nd. QB Tyler Stehling’s debut career start went from promising to disappointing in about 60 flat. He threw 22 of 37 for 183 passing yards and two interceptions, and the Owls offense, like a needleless turntable, never found a groove. Rice repeated so many of last season’s mistakes in this season’s opener that one wonders if head coach David Bailiff should just hit his players over the head with a rolled-up newspaper. Penalties, inconsistent offense, poor defense, leaving the toilet seat up, you name it – a veritable checklist of what not to do.
If Army lives up to its status as NCAA football betting favorite this Saturday and beats Rice, the Black Knights will already have as many wins as they did last year. Furthermore, they would avenge the 38-31 loss that Rice inflicted upon them on October 24th, 2015. Of course, if they were to go around avenging every loss they had last season, they’d be busier than the Count of Montecristo. In any case, it seems as if the tables will turn this season, and while the Owls will not have to worry too much about getting owned in the air, Army’s triple-option rushing attack should do the trick once again. Though even if the odds favor them, history is against the Black Knights. It’s been 70 games since the last time that Army won on back-to-back weeks, and about 20 years since they started a regular season 2-0. Truth be told, though, head coach Jeff Monken is a throwback to Jim Young in the 80s and Bob Sutton in the 90s. Last year, Army almost won seven of the ten games they lost. Almost. Perhaps this season they will play football and not horseshoes which, along with hand grenades, is the only place almost counts.