The greatest thing about football is that no matter how the last performance played out on the field you will have another chance to redeem yourself within the week. Air Force enters the weekend coming off a tough loss to rival military academy Navy and they get to bounce back against the 2018 Mountain West conference champions, the Fresno State Bulldogs. The story line for this game will be what a difference a year makes for the simple fact that Fresno lost a ton of senior leadership that pushed the once floundering program all the way to the top of the conference. This year the Bulldogs are a different team and are primed for the Falcons to make a statement while also picking up another conference win to stay on course to make a bowl game and possibly compete for the Mountain West championship.
Last week was a tough loss but the silver lining is the Falcons knew exactly what they needed to do in order to change their fortunes for the rest of the season. The defense, who had been strong all season faltered against the triple option offense attack of Navy which is surprising since it was a carbon copy of what they face all Fall camp. The main problems were two fold, one Navy only needed to throw six times in the game basically taking out the Falcons secondary who had forced quarterbacks into mistakes on the season. The second was the front seven couldn’t stop the running game at all giving up a season high 4+ yards per carry and giving up 4 rushing touchdowns. The offense didn’t play the best game as they couldn’t find the end zone until the final quarter but Hammond showed he has the ability to lead a comeback, including his limitations as a passer.
Fresno enters this game 2-2 on the year with losses opening weekend to a tough USC and Minnesota teams by a total of eleven points. After that however, the Bulldogs rebounded and won their previous two games against Sacramento State and New Mexico State. Though I have the confidence in Air Force after them putting the egg on my face last week when I predicted they would win by at least two scores I am going to be conservative and predict a very tight game that favors the Falcons in Falcon stadium my score prediction is going to be AF 24 Fresno 17.