Army West Point may have snapped its losing streak in last year's Army-Navy showdown, but Las Vegas oddsmakers don't see the Black Knights managing two wins in a row over the Midshipmen.
Navy's favored by five points in this year's game, one of more than 100 early college football betting lines put out by the Golden Nugget sportsbook late last month. The gap narrowed significantly this time around: The Mids were 12.5-point favorites at this time last year, and 13-point favorites going into the 2015 contest.
The lines change over time and generally react to betting patterns, not necessarily on-field performance. Last year, for instance, Navy entered the rivalry game as a six-point favorite. Army exited the game with a 21-17 victory in Baltimore, ending the Mids' 14-year win streak.
Neither service academy makes any other appearances on the 106-game Golden Nugget slate, nor does Air Force, which beat both Army and Navy last year to claim the Commander in Chief's Trophy.
This year's Army-Navy game returns to Philadelphia on Dec. 9. Both teams begin their seasons under the Friday night lights on Sept. 1, with Navy visiting Florida Atlantic and Army hosting Fordham.
Kevin Lilley is the features editor of Military Times.