October 29, 2011

GBK Summary: Army's Play Heats Up Michie Stadium

Today the schedule said that the Army Black Knights were playing the Fordham Rams. As far as I am concerned, those Rams didn't even show up. The real opponent was treacherous, nasty, terrible, and downright wicked. Her name is Mother Nature, and she brought a blizzard with her. But the mother of all nature met a real force of nature in the Army Football team and, to put it nicely, the visitors to Michie Stadium were shown no mercy. Everybody got a piece of the action from old seniors all the way down to new freshman.

With Trent Steelman not under center for Army since time he stepped foot on campus due to injury, senior Max Jenkins got the nod to take over the reins of the QB position. This was his first career start and his last home game all in one. It must have been bitter sweet for the long time back-up signal caller who on the day ran for two rushing touchdowns and threw an impressive 30 yard td pass to Anthony Stephens on a well executed play action.

Jenkins definitely went out in style, taking with him a night that he will always remember.

Another name that continues to sparkle is sophomore slotback Malcolm Brown Raymond Maples, who was nothing short of electrifying. The first half was virtually all his, as he raked up 159 yards on just only ten carries. This young man can run the ball like it's nobody's business. He ran through a blizzard like it was nothing, if that doesn't impress you than I don't know what will. Maples has surely solidified himself as one of Army's star athletes who continues to get better as the season goes on.

Seeing the usual Army starters dominate on the frozen tundra was great, don't get me wrong, but watching the freshman (plebes) get a shot at the big time and deliver like they had been starting all along was just as satisfying to see. Starting with the line, where the young 6-foot-0, 257 pound center Ryan Powis did a great job of moving that D-Line around and making huge holes for the backs to run through. Take a look at the stats, there's a reason we ran for an amazing 514 rushing yards, it all starts up front. Powis, who is a star waiting to happen and has earned his spot with the boys up front, no questions there.

In the backfield, fullback Larry Dixon, who received the starting nod of 2010 workhorse, Jared Hassin, was running amuck. Not only was he blocking hard, but he was running harder than anyone out on that field, often times with more than two defenders on his back. He ended the night with 85 yards on the ground and one touchdown. Other freshman standouts on the offense, among the many, were QB Angel Santiago who ran for 58 yards with an average of over 19 yards per carry, along with Gino DeBartolo, who took over for Santiago at quarterback and Stephen Fraser who combined for a total of 49 rushing yards.

This night was nothing short of special for the Army Football Program. Not only was it a nice send off for some of the soon to be "old" Army players, i.e. Max Jenkins, but it was also a nice glimpse at the future with so many young players standing out.

Army 55 - Fordham 0
Army 1 - Mother Nature 0

Look out Air Force…We're coming for you!

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