Army, Boston College Favorites
9 Nov 2006
There is plenty up for grabs this weekend as Batavia hosts the NRU final four.
Army will play USMMA, and Boston College will play Harvard in what will be a fascinating encounter.
Army should win their game comfortably; although, the Marines won't lie down and could cause the Army boys a few headaches. USMMA is currently unbeaten this year as they were too good for the rest of the Met New York teams in regular season play and surprised Cornell last weekend by soundly winning 25 - 10. USMMA, seeming underdogs entering into this competition, will be the crowd favorites. But it may be impossible to beat the Army team that has scored a phenomenal 569 points in 8 games and conceded only 86 points. Lead skillfully by Flyhalf Andrew Locke, Army has been the form team within the country and is the firm favorite to take the NRU title.
The Boston College v Harvard match will be an interesting encounter. The teams have already played this season, and Boston College proved too good on that occasion winning 24-10. Phil Albanese has been in good form for the Eagles- he is an illusive runner when given space, and he will be seen as a major threat by Harvard. Boston College may not be exciting to watch but they execute the basics very well. They will use the 1st and 2nd pod in the lineout to their advantage and will look to drive off any clean ball that's been taken. The backs will look to spin it when passing to the left and will rely on switches and short balls when passing to the right. They are a limited team but they perform cohesively, and they are effective in executing their game plan. Boston College will be favorites to win this one but don't count out the Crimson who have shown promising form in recent weeks.
All four teams have to travel over 350 miles to get to Batavia (I think it's near Khazikstan), but I'm picking it must be a good rugby facility with showers and full sized fields. If it's not, the NRU have to pull there heads out and start showing common sense and start doing what's right for rugby!