by Ralph Routon
Thanks to college football's Game of the Year-Decade-Century so far, the Air Force Falcons have inherited another national TV appearance.
LSU and Alabama, the nation's top two teams, were scheduled as a CBS national telecast for their showdown on the afternoon of Nov. 5. But now, with LSU ranked No. 1 and Alabama No. 2, that game has moved to prime time, starting at 6 p.m. Mountain time.
To fill that Nov. 5 afternoon slot, CBS has chosen the Air Force-Army game at Falcon Stadium, which will kick off at 1:30 p.m. It will mark the first time ever for all three service-academy games to be on national network TV. CBS also carried Air Force's 35-34 overtime victory at Navy on Oct. 1, and the network always televises the Army-Navy game nationally.
On Oct. 8, NBC televised Air Force's loss at Notre Dame.
As a result of this development, Air Force will have a much larger audience watching the opportunity to wrap up its second straight sweep in the academies' annual round-robin quest for the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy, which the Falcons won last year for the first time since 2002. The AFA-Army game initially had been scheduled on the cable network Versus.
Air Force has beaten Army 13 out of the past 14 years, with the Black Knights' only victory in that span coming in 2005 (27-24) at Falcon Stadium.
Currently, the Falcons are 3-4 after three consecutive losses, but their 37-26 defeat last Saturday at Boise State probably helped their credibility. They travel to New Mexico this Saturday (noon, The Mtn.) for a Mountain West Conference game. Army is 2-5 for the season but will be a heavy favorite this week against Fordham.
CBS announced that its commentators for Air Force-Army will be Spero Dedes and Steve Beuerlein.