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Getting to know Michigan’s opponent: Air Force

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Introducing the Air Force Falcons

NCAA Football: Virginia Military at Air Force Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan football is now 2-0 on the season and this Saturday will be their second consecutive home game. Last week, the Wolverines beat the Cincinnati Bearcats 36-14. Their next challenge is a formidable foe, the Air Force Falcons.

Air Force finished 10-3 last season, with wins against Navy, Boise State, and winning the Arizona Bowl against South Alabama. While their schedule wasn’t loaded with quality opponents from beginning to end, the team had a prolific running attack that will be a challenge for Michigan to bottle up.

Style of offense

Air Force runs an up-tempo no-huddle offense most of the time in an attempt to catch a defense off-guard and get them winded. Head coach Troy Calhoun uses a heavy dose of the triple option, which used to be a staple in college football, but has become much less common as football has evolved. While a lot of triple option looks should be expected, Air Force isn’t afraid to throw the football.

Statistics of Note

  • In 2016, the Falcons had the 3rd best rushing attack in the nation, averaging 317.4 yards per game.
  • Week one against VMI, they rushed for 457 yards
  • Quarterback Arion Worthman completed 8-12 passes week one for 172 yards and two touchdowns
  • Only allowed 95 total yards week one, the lowest number in an Air Force game for 1956
  • 62 points week one against VMI was the second most in program history
  • 10th ranked rush defense in 2016
  • Running back Timothy McVey had 1,348 all purpose yards in 20106

What they are saying

- Maurice Hurst: “We have prepared a lot in spring and we used some of those practices to get ready for what we’re going to face this week so that’s not a complete shock to us. We’ll have our scout team ready to be able to give us a look we’ll need that they’ve been practicing and done before. That helps you understand the offense better.”