The military schools have their own bowl-game available to them. Washington D.C. is the venue of the Military Bowl sponsored by Northrop Grumman, being played in the shadow of the Pentagon.
In this year’s edition of the game, the U.S. Air Force Academy will be making its debut in this bowl contest as it represents the military against MAC power Toledo.
These two schools have never played before on the gridiron.
The latest Military Bowl odds list Toledo as a 3-point chalk, while the total sits at 70 points.
After starting the season 1-3, Toledo recovered with seven victories in its last eight contests to tie Northern Illinois for the MAC West Division title (7-1). Most recently, the Rockets posted consecutive road wins over Central Michigan (44-17) and Ball State (45-28) en route to a 4-2 mark on the road (winning the last four).
The Rocket offense lists a strong eighth in the country in offense (42 points per contest), gaining 493 yards per game (272 passing, 221 rushing). Adonis Thomas and Morgan Williams anchor the running attack with a total of 1,634 yards and 22 scores on 5.8 yards per tote.
Terrance Owens and Austin Dantin have combined to complete 68 percent of their throws for 3,210 yards and 30 touchdowns with just six interceptions. The offensive line has allowed nine sacks. Eric Page is one of the national receiving leaders with 112 receptions (76 more than anyone else on the team) for 1,123 yards and 10 scores.
Toledo ranks just 89th in the country in scoring defense (31 ppg), surrendering 401 yards per game (278 via the pass, 123 on the ground) while totaling 22 sacks and generating 28 turnovers three of which were returned for TDs (Dan Molls and Robert Bell, two fumbles; Jermaine Robinson, pick).
Desmond Marrow paces this defense with 78 tackles and three interceptions, while Bell has 70 stops to go with a team-best four forced fumbles, a team-high three recoveries, a pick and a sack. Ben Pike has five sacks, 11 tackles and a forced fumble, with Molls recording three fumble recoveries and 58 tackles.
The Falcons won four of their last five contests to end up fifth in the Mountain West (3-4) and to win the Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy for a second straight year with a 2-0 record vs. Army and Navy. Recently, Air Force managed victories over UNLV (45-17) and Colorado State (45-21). The Falcons are 3-2 as a visitor, winning the last two.
With one of the top rushing offenses in the nation, Air Forced ranks 22nd in the country in offense (34 ppg) while racking up 459 yards per game (320 rushing, 139 via the pass).
The triple-option attack is led by the three prongs Asher Clark (1,036 yards, six touchdowns, 7.3 yards per attempt), Mike Dewitt (543 yards, 10 TDs, 4.9 ypc) and Tim Jefferson (492, 10, 3.5 ypc), while Jefferson completes 61 percent of his passes for 1,478 yards and 12 scores with six picks. The offensive line has allowed nine sacks. Jonathan Warzeka and Zack Kauth anchor the receiving corps with 55 receptions for 935 yards and seven scores.
On defense, Air Force ranks 67th in the nation in points allowed (27 ppg), surrendering 391 yards per contest (228 rushing, 163 through the air) while recording 17 sacks and forcing 24 turnovers.
Brady Amack paces the defense with 125 total stops (36 more than any other player), adding a team-best four forced fumbles, one sack and a fumble recovery. Alex Means has six sacks, 71 stops, three forced fumbles, two blocked kicks, two fumble recoveries and an pick, while Davis has four interceptions, 89 stops, a forced fumble and recovery.