The Navy Midshipmen and college football record breaker Keenan Reynolds welcome the SMU Mustangs on senior day. Navy are having an outstanding season with a 7-1 record, their last contest an upset of Memphis, 45-20. Reynolds is the holder of most rushing yards by a quarterback in NCAA history. He can also capture the title of most rushing touchdowns for a player today. Navy loves to run the ball, and they love to run it with Reynolds operating at the quarterback position in the triple-option offense. I as a linebacker played against an offense like this in high school, it definitely isn’t easy to ascertain who has the ball. Now that was the high school level and I never became a NCAA D1 football player, but the concepts are still very much the same and if your linebackers don’t snuff the play out off quickly, damage is going to be done against the defense in a big way. It can make your head spin playing defense against this offense. Against a fast athletic defense that can be nullified, but if not, it will be a long day.
Memphis was having an undefeated season before last week. Navy ended that with the 45-20 win. I expected a close game that would have come down to the last play or something of the sort, but it wasn’t the case, as Navy have extended their successful season with a record of 7-1. Their only loss coming against rival Notre Dame on the road, a 41-24 loss. I do wonder where they would be ranked if they won that game. Presumably somewhere between 5 to 10. That didn’t happen though, so Navy lands at 20. Not bad for a team like Navy, who is looking at a pretty good bowl game if they keep it up. But what it could have been if they beat Notre Dame on that day.
I don’t want to call a game before it even begins, but by the looks of it it’s looking like Navy is going to be advancing to 8-1 today. Maybe SMU pulls some kind of big shocker, but with this team, shocker isn’t used in the same sentence often. SMU is going to have their hands filled with this running attack on the ground. To beat Navy you need to have a defensive front that can slow them down. SMU hasn’t been the best defending the run. Preparing for the triple-option doesn’t take a day of preparation. We’ll see how well prepared SMU is today.
SMU Mustangs vs. Navy Midshipmen College Football
Odds provided by Bovada.lv
SMU vs. Navy Pick:
For SMU to win this game, a lot of things have to go in their favor, like turnovers presumably. However, Navy is one of the best teams in the country at limiting turnovers. They just don’t make mistakes in that regard. Navy is 2nd in the nation in turnover ratio. As is always the case with military schools, Navy is also one of the least penalized teams in college football. On the ground, this game looks like a total mismatch to me. Consider the fact that Navy is averaging 326.5 yards on the ground, which is 3rd in the entire country. Now look at what SMU is doing defending the run. Allowing 260 yards per game on the ground.
The Mustangs own one of the worst defenses in all of college football. Note that they are 119th in yards allowed, 6th last, surrendering an average of 525.7 yards against. They have also allowed a staggering 45.4 points per game against. All of these figures rank among the worst in college football. On senior day, Reynolds is going to come to play. He can break the record for the most rushing touchdowns in NCAA history with a score today. In other words, I think he is going to get there undoubtedly. Navy will be able to name the score against this defense of SMU. Navy has a defense to boot, allowing only 19 points per game. I expect a big Navy win today on senior day. I would lay the points.
PICK: NAVY -21 (-110)