Always fun to watch!!! I'll be wearing my Black Knights t-shirt but Army isn't doing very good this year whereas Navy has been playing well.
Army-Navy brings Philly a bowl-game atmosphere Nov. 22, 2006 Philadelphia Daily News
There are games that are just games.
And then there are games that are rivalries. Classics. Games that everyone comes to expect each year.
This is America's Game.
For the 107th time, Army and Navy will battle on the field, in front of a sellout crowd Dec. 2 at Lincoln Financial Field. At stake is the Commander-In-Chief's trophy.
"It's a huge rivalry," said Army center and co-captain Pete Bier. "It's one of the focuses of our season each year. You can't overexaggerate the importance of this game and the magnitude that it carries. It's just natural to get yourself up. You don't have to get psyched up for this game. If you don't, I don't think you need to be playing football."
One of college football's greatest rivalries, this will be the 80th time that Army and Navy play in Philadelphia.
Previous games have been held at Franklin Field, Municipal/JFK Stadium and Veterans Stadium. Larry Needle, executive director of the Philadelphia Sports Congress, said the game was originally played here because the city was the midway point between the two academies, in West Point, N.Y., and Annapolis, Md.
"Over the years the tradition has built up here," said Needle. "I think there is just that real connection here in the city. The fact that it is the birthplace of America, I think, really resonates with what the two academies are all about."
Needle said the atmosphere surrounding the game makes it just like a bowl game in Philadelphia.
"When you think about the national-television exposure, the number of visitors to the city and the overall impact, it easily equates to any bowl game held around the country," he said. "For us it's a very special Philadelphia treasure that we want to stay that way for a long time."
At the annual pregame luncheon yesterday at Lincoln Financial Field, players and coaches spoke about the game and what it means to them. Mayor Street was also on hand, assuring both teams that he has every intention to make sure Philadelphia is a mainstay for the game in the near future.
Philadelphia is hosting the game for the fifth time in the last 6 years. The game has also been recently held at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., and at the former PSINet Stadium - now M & T Bank Stadium - in Baltimore, where the 2007 game will take place.
According to Needle, more than 50,000 visitors flood Philadelphia for the game, filling more than 15,000 hotel rooms and bringing in an estimated $35 million to the city.
Needle said if there were any problem, it would be the fact that nearly every ticket sold for the game is sold outside of Philadelphia, which makes it difficult for local fans to get tickets. In addition to the game, the Philadelphia Sports Congress has arranged for players and fans to partake of numerous activities around the city during the weekend, including the Patriot Games that features competitions between the two academies in running, golf basketball and football.
As far as the rivalry itself goes, just one game separates the two teams. Navy (8-3) holds a 50-49-7 lead over Army (3-8) in the series, with the Midshipmen riding a four-game win streak.
Since Paul Johnson took over the coaching helm at Navy, his teams are 8-1 against the other service academies, including a 4-1 record against Air Force.
While the teams are heated rivals for 60 minutes on the field, when all is said and done, the teams will come together as teammates, fighting for one common cause.
"I think both schools have a great deal of respect for one another," Johnson said. "I know we certainly respect West Point and the program that they run over there as a coaching staff, and I think the players on our team feel the same way.
"We're going to fight them as hard as we can for 60 minutes on the field, but when it's over, that mutual respect is still there."
Fantasy Football: "Luck is where preparation meets opportunity"
Gettin' closer to the big game! Of course, not like the mighty Army teams of old when they were National Champions in 1944 and again in 1945 - or when they had Heisman winners Doc Blanchard in 1945 or Glenn Davis in 1946 or Pete Dawkins in 1958. Navy never did win the NC, but did have 2 Heisman winners in Joe Bellino in 1960 and of course who could forget Roger Staubach in 1963!
Fantasy Football: "Luck is where preparation meets opportunity"
In the history of the Heisman Trophy, no two players are as inextricably linked as 1945 winner Felix "Doc" Blanchard and '46 honoree Glenn Davis. Together they led Army to a three-year record of 27-0-1 and two national titles.
Memorably nicknamed Mr. Inside and Mr. Outside by the New York Sun, South Carolina-born Blanchard was the powerful fullback trampling defenders, Californian Davis the lithe halfback outrunning everyone-though it was well known that Mr. Outside could just as easily go between the tackles and Mr. Inside could deftly sweep around end. They formed an overwhelming backfield duo, scoring 97 touchdowns.
They also became a national phenomenon, landing on the cover of Time magazine in 1945 with the caption "Junior Davis & Doc Blanchard: They Make Army's T Boil." Sportswriters debated who was the better athlete: Davis, who rushed for 2,957 yards, earned varsity letters in baseball, basketball and track (and later dated starlet Elizabeth Taylor); or Blanchard, who, at 6 feet, 208 pounds, had amazing speed (10 seconds in the 100-yard dash) and could punt, catch and block as well as he could run. He also threw the shot more than 50 feet. They captured the imagination of friend and foe alike. "I've just seen Superman in the flesh," Notre Dame coach Ed McKeever said in 1944. "He wears number 35 and goes by the name of Blanchard." The New York Times praised Davis as "the best halfback football has produced in modern times."
Army went 9-0 their first season together. The following year, Blanchard exploded for 718 yards and 19 touchdowns. The 1945 Army-Navy game was a classic exhibition of Blanchard's talents: Before 102,000 fans, including President Truman, Blanchard scored three times, once on a 46-yard interception return, to lead a 32-13 victory. Describing one defender who tried to stop him, author Tim Cohane later wrote, "Doc ran through him as if he were a paper bag."
The performance helped make Blanchard the first junior to win the Heisman. He recalls making the trip from West Point by himself, dutifully following orders to "stay on the river until you get to New York." The runner-up was Davis, who had also finished second to Ohio State's Les Horvath in '44. But that didn't diminish Davis's pleasure for his teammate. "I was happy for him," he says, "and we're still great friends."
While a knee injury forced Blanchard to miss two games in 1946, Davis was at his best. Time wrote he had "a special kind of speed that is all his own. After a brief show of hippiness, enough to get around the end, he simply leans forward and sprouts wings." That's how it must have seemed to Michigan that season. During Army's victory over the Wolverines, Davis scored one touchdown on a 58- yard run and threw for a second. His game stats: 105 yards rushing and 168 yards on 7-for-8 passing.
A 0-0 tie against Notre Dame a few weeks later was the only blemish on the otherwise perfect Blanchard-Davis era. But Davis's career rushing average of 8.26 yards per carry remains an NCAA record. And he still holds Army's mark for most touchdowns, 59. He was also the Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year in '46, beating out Joe Louis and Ben Hogan. More important, Davis finally won a Heisman of his own.
After graduation, both men served in the military-Davis in Korea before returning to play pro football with the Rams, Blanchard with the Air Force until 1971, when he retired a colonel. Both men also gave their Heisman trophies to their high schools: Blanchard's went to St. Stanislaus Prep in Bay St. Louis, Miss., and Davis's to Bonita High in La Verne, Calif. But Davis jokes he still has one in the family: After his wife of 43 years died in 1995, he met and married Yvonne Ameche, the widow of Wisconsin's 1954 winner Alan Ameche.
"We had a great football team," Davis says of his Army days. "It's too bad they didn't have a Heisman for each player."
Too bad, indeed, except for the one player who already had one.