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Same Approach, Different Atmosphere For Black Knights

2020 has been a year like we’ve never seen before in the sports world.

Professional and college sports saw a pause in action due to the COVID-19 pandemic and now that sports are returning, we’re seeing another twist to an already strange year – sports with no fans.

Army football head coach Jeff Monken isn’t focused on the lack of fans in the Black Knights’ season opener against Middle Tennessee State Saturday afternoon.

“We don’t control the crowd anyway so I don’t talk much about the crowd,” Monken said when asked how he would address the team before playing in an almost empty Michie Stadium.

Monken added, “what we control is our attitude and effort and we’re going to try and do the very best we can to be as close to 100 percent on those two things.”

Michie Stadium won’t be entirely empty as the Corps of Cadets will still be attending the game. This year, the Corps will be sitting on the Army sideline as opposed to years past on the opponent’s side.

In some parts of the country, some schools are allowing a certain capacity into stadiums or none at all so having strictly your student body cheering you on should be of assistance to the Black Knights.

Monken says his hope is “whether we’re in a stadium of 4,000 cadets of 104,000 people that our attitude and effort will be the same and our execution of our assignments and fundamentals will be the same because that’s what wins games.”

Saturday afternoons at West Point during the football season are usually filled with 30,000 plus fans cheering the Black Knights onto victory. While this season will be a little strange, Monken isn’t approaching it any differently.

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