Game 5: Duke Blue Devils @ Army Black Knights
|GAME # 5
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Duke Blue Devils: 0-1
In contrast to year 1, year 2 has been well planned out and well spaced. Going to Army has been a trip I have been looking forward to since the launch of this quest. I have heard nothing but great things about the experience of seeing an Army football game.
The game was at noon, which meant an early wake up call so that we could get to West Point in order to see all the things we wanted to see. Unfortunately, in what seems to be a trend, the weather did not cooperate and the cadet review parade was cancelled. I had been looking forward to this and was disappointed. The grounds at West Point were incredible. This is a wonderful setting, football or no football.
Walking around, we saw General Custer’s tomb and a Robert E. Lee headstone. We are not sure if this was the Robert E. Lee or not. Also, I am not sure why we noticed it but we did notice that it did not seem as if the dorms had air conditioning. Not as bad as a few Florida dorms that did not have a/c but still I am sure there were many days this was not pleasant. We saw the West Point Museum as well as a guy roasting a whole pig on a spit. What was odd was the best gift shop and place to get Army merchandise was in the museum.
Black Knight’s Alley was full of activity and I decided that before I take my kids to a game at the Swamp (they have been to Gainesville, but not to a game), I will take them here as a testing ground. There is plenty of stuff for the kids to do, stadium was not all that crowded, and it is a short drive. This was Hall of Fame weekend and Coach K was being inducted into the Army Hall of Fame. I wonder if he was rooting for Duke or Army.
First off, this stadium had ramps on a much better incline than Texas. The stadium was only half full which surprised me. I thought Army got much better attendance, but we actually had many seats around us empty in the upper deck. Army dominated the first half but only led 13-10. Amazingly, Army held this lead despite not throwing a completed pass until 7:27 remained in the 3rd quarter. It seemed as if Andrew Rodriguez from Army made every tackle. The second half went back and forth with Duke finally exerting control. The final score of Duke winning 35-19 was a bit deceiving as Army threw 2 int’s returned for TD’s at the end of the game and then proceeded to get a TD on the last play of the game themselves.
After the game the walk back to the car was an adventure. Over the hills and through the woods (to grandmother’s house we go) was an appropriate motto. Plus we were sliding down hills as we foolishly followed cadets into areas I am not sure we were supposed to be. Al thinks it was a good shortcut and the most direct route. I disagree but there were no major injuries so all is good.
This was a fun trip and a beautiful place to spend a fall Saturday. I am surprised that I had never seen a game here before given its proximity, but I can see taking my kids here at some point in the future and maybe then I will see the cadet review.
> Al’s pick was “Not Duke”. We both picked this game wrong and I stand by the fact that picking against Duke is a winning long term strategy.
> “They are coming from somewhere” was the no s*** quote of the trip.
> There are lots of bars right outside the gates of campus; very close.
> Base security seems to be outsourced yet they say “duty, honor, country” after allowing you in. Someone please email me what this is about. Why would a private security firm be saying that? Al thinks the Army owns the private security firm and then hires cadets. This seems unlikely so if anyone knows, please fill me in.
> We could take Al’s boat to Army games…if we had 7 days to spare.
This is the last of what I consider the weak write ups. Next game I begin to hit stride and they get more interesting, at least in my opinion. Thanks for bearing with me.
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