It's been a struggle for Navy to start the year. They lost their first 3 games, scoring 10 points per game. It was some of the ugliest football the midshipmen have played in a long time. That's turning around now, coming off a 34 point outburst agaist UCF that resulted in their first win of the season.
Now they face their biggest test yet in SMU. It's hard to imagine the Navy of the first 3 weeks even putting up a fight against the unbeaten Mustangs. The team from last week though? That team could just put SMU on upset alert.
Navy is a massive underdog in this one. They're 13.5 point underdogs, and they're given +425 odds to win the game outright. That's an implied 19% chance of victory. Meanwhile, SMU is given -500 odds, or an implied 83.3% chance to win the game.
The public certainly believes in the SMU they've seen all year and the Navy they saw the first three weeks of the season. It's hard to blame them.
Navy and SMU have met 22 times in their history. Navy has won 13 of those games. Almost all of those are recent wins. In fact, since 2010, Navy is 6-2 against SMU. This is a series they've dominated in recent history.
That domination has often been born from offensive dominance. The last time a team scored less than 28 points in an SMU v. Navy game it was 2015. Even in that game Navy put up 55 points. Expect the scoreboard to be lit up on Saturday.
Navy could use this win to put their season back on track. Winning two in a row against UCF and SMU could give Navy the momentum they need to carry them to a 2nd bowl victory in 3 years.
That could be the momentum they need to recapture the form they had in the 2010s.