Despite a 9-2 regular season record, Army football is on the outside looking in of the bowl picture, and head coach Jeff Monken is not happy.
Who can blame him? Nearly half of the SEC is playing in a bowl with a losing record. Meanwhile, the Black Knights are left without a postseason home.
Army had an agreement to play in the Independence Bowl, but the game was canceled on Sunday. Last night, an indignant Monken voiced his displeasure to ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg.
He also went to bat for his players and all of the active service members worldwide who were looking forward to seeing Army in action.
“Don’t say no to Army, because you’re not just saying no to our team. You’re saying no to the 1.3 million people who serve on active duty all over the world who want to have that source of pride represented in a bowl game,” Monken said. “These seniors have made a pledge to put their lives on the line for every other college football player in this country, for every college football fan, for everybody that’s involved in these decisions. Somehow, some way, somebody should say, ‘We’re going to make a way for this team to play.'”
Jeff Monken: "Don't say no to Army, because you're not just saying no to our team. You're saying no to the 1.3 million people who serve on active duty all over the world who want to have that source of pride represented in a bowl game." https://t.co/obp4nFyIUb
— Adam Rittenberg (@ESPNRittenberg) December 21, 2020
We can’t fault the Army players for being angry and upset, and we also can’t argue with Monken going to bat for his team.
This situation is a mess, and it should have been avoidable. Hopefully there is still a way to make this right.