Preview 2019: Air Force. 5 Things You Need To Know, Season Prediction

Preview 2019: Air Force. 5 Things You Need To Know, Season Prediction

Air Force

Preview 2019: Air Force. 5 Things You Need To Know, Season Prediction

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2. KEYS TO THE SEASON

Biggest Key To The Air Force Offense

The running game really, really, really, really, really has to work. The passing game was more a part of the fun late in the year, but that’s only because the ground attack was getting stuffed too often. Only one of the five wins last season came without the Falcons hitting the 300-yard rushing mark, and that’s because it went against a Navy O that went nowhere.

In 2017, Air Force went 5-0 when it ran for 400 yards or more, and 0-7 when going under.  Last season, it was 4-1 when running for 330 yards or more, and 1-6 when it was under.

Biggest Key To The Air Force Defense

The pass rush has to get better. On the plus side, Air Force doubled its sack total from 2017. On the negative, it only came up with 20, not helping a beleaguered secondary that got ripped to shreds on a regular basis. Getting to 30 sacks or more was a given for this defense over the years, and when it wasn’t – like in 2013 – the season was a disaster. Last year, 12 sacks came in the five wins, and eight were generated in the seven losses.

Key Player To A Successful Season

QB Donald Hammond, Jr. 
The running game has to do even more even though it finished third in the country. As good as it was, the 3,402 overall rushing yards were the fewest by the program since 2013. The improvement starts with more quarterback consistency – Hammond has to stay healthy – and converting on third downs. It’s not enough just to make sure the rushing attack is special; it has to set up easy plays to keep the chains moving. That starts with Hammond – or Isaiah Sanders, or Beau English – adding more pop to the position.

Key Game To The Air Force Season

Utah State, Oct. 26
It’s a rough first part of the season for the Falcons with four road games in six beginning in mid-September. More than that, they have to go to Boise State and Hawaii, and they have to deal with Fresno State. Any hopes of being a player in the Mountain division race should revolve around being able to get by Utah State. Lose, and with the next two conference days coming on the road, there’s a big problem.
Air Force Schedule Breakdown & Analysis

2018 Air Force Fun Stats

– Penalties: Opponents 71 for 617 yards – Air Force 54 for 521 yards
– Time of Possession: Air Force 34:22 – Opponents 25:38
– 4th Down Conversions: Air Force 24-of-39 (62%) – Opponents 8-of-18 (44%)

NEXT: What Will Happen

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