WKU honored to play at Army on 20th anniversary of 9/11
This Saturday will be another big day of the college football season across the country, but it'll also -- and more importantly -- be a day of remembrance on the 20th anniversary of September 11, 2001.
On what will be a day full of reflection and grief, there will be a football game happening on the campus of the United States Military Academy in West Point, New York between Army and Western Kentucky.
"Really excited about this week," WKU coach Tyson Helton said during his weekly Monday media briefing. "Great opportunity to play a really good Army team on the 20th anniversary of September 11th. It's a great honor to play in that game. I can't think of a better environment. I know our team will be very, very proud to be a part of that.
"It should be a good football game. Looking forward to it."
While both the Hilltoppers and Black Knights are coming off Week 1 wins over UT Martin and Georgia State, respectively, the two teams will be battling each other for a second win in what is anticipated to be an intriguing matchup on national television.
The football game itself is going to be important, but what will be remembered the most from Saturday will be that WKU and Army came together to honor their country on a very significant anniversary and at a special location that builds the next generation of military men and women that will one day protect the U.S.A.
"What a great platform to showcase our team," Helton said. "I know our team is really excited to be there. Army's a great campus, it's a great stadium, great atmosphere. The pageantry of college football on a day like that is going to be tremendous. Just really excited to have that opportunity, and there's great honor to play in that game."
As for the game, WKU and Army will be meeting for the fourth time -- with the Hilltoppers currently leading the all-time series 3-0, including a 17-8 win in 2019 at Houchens-Smith Stadium.
In that matchup two seasons ago, the Hilltoppers' defense held the Black Knights to just 208 yards of offense -- including 137 rushing yards -- and had a 38-to-22 advantage in time of possession.
If WKU wants to record another win against Army this year, what has to happen?
"I guess you've got to Army them back like we did," Helton said with a laugh. "We've gotta play ball control on offense and be able to run the football and eat up the clock. It may be a boring football game, but that's kind of the formula. Don't have penalties, don't have turnovers and got to be able to run the football. That's what we were able to do in 2019 ... it worked for us.
"They're a much better football team -- much better football team -- than 2019, so it'll take everything we've got, for sure."
Saturday's contest will kickoff at 10:30 a.m. from Michie Stadium in West Point, with the broadcast taking place on CBS Sports Network.