Air Force Football: Expect Anything Different?

Jake SchallerContributor IOctober 4, 2009

One of my favorite performances in recent sports history is Tiger Woods’s display at the 2008 U.S. Open.

I’m sure most people have seen highlights of his ridiculous back nine on Saturday, his grimaces after long drives and, of course, his birdie putt on No. 18 on Sunday that forced the one-day playoff with Rocco Mediate.

(I’m getting to football and do have a point. Bear with me.)

That was a tough putt: About 12 feet with a left-to-right break over a bumpy surface. No gimmie by any means. And yet somehow you knew it was going in.

NBC announcer Dan Hicks came up with one of the all-time calls for the moment. After the ball dropped, Tiger unleashed a double-fist pump and the crowd roared. Hicks waited for a beat and then screamed:

“Expect anything different?!”

I thought of the call today while watching Navy beat Air Force for the seventh straight season. I know plenty of Air Force players, fans, and coaches thought this was the year the Falcons broke through with a victory, especially given Navy’s razor-thin margin of victory in some of the games in its streak.

But at the same time, for the last couple days, I didn’t feel like Air Force was going to win. And with the exception of the few minutes after Anthony Wright Jr.’s pick-six, I kept expecting the Falcons to make mistakes in big situations (which they did) and the Midshipmen to come through in big situations (which they did).

So while the outcome was in doubt until the final play and—I guess—it could be argued that the game could have gone the other way...

Expect anything different?

Not me.