There's a division of opinion as to whether current military operations are doing anything to truly protect this homeland of ours, but the fact remains that without the past efforts of our armed forces, we don't get to enjoy fun diversions like college basketball. No matter where I travel across Hoops Nation, they always play the same song before each game, the one with the lyrics that so vividly describe freedom's perilous fight. It's difficult not to be proud.
All that being said, appreciating the basketball played by America's two largest officer-training academies requires dedication beyond the call of duty. Both have spent most of the past generation propping up the Patriot League, and both enter this game searching for their first 2006 league win. This year, Army (4-12, 0-4) sports both the least efficient offense and defense in the conference (.85 points per poss. offense, 1.05 defense) and have lost seven straight. Navy (7-9, 0-3) got fat on D2's, the MEAC and low Ivies to get close to their first 10-win season since 2002, but they have the best long-distance number in the PL (37.6% 3FG). So it's minus seven (Army: 56.1 PF, 63.4 PA) if by land, three if by sea.
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