Photos via ESPN Images
- Army head coach Jeff Monken to join the show live
- All four Heisman Trophy finalists on-set before Saturday night’s ceremony
- Special guest: 2011 Heisman Trophy winner and ESPN analyst Robert Griffin III
College GameDay Built by The Home Depot will travel to the 122nd edition of the Army-Navy game this Saturday, Dec. 11 (9 a.m. – noon ET), as the Black Knights face the Midshipmen for the coveted Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy. The premier three-hour traveling pregame show will air on ESPN and ESPNU, highlighting all the pageantry and traditions of ‘America’s Game’ before the U.S. service academies meet in their annual rivalry game.
GameDay is making its eighth trip to Army-Navy. The show will originate from outside MetLife Stadium (Lot J) in East Rutherford, N.J.
Rece Davis hosts the 12-time Emmy Award-winning show with analysts Lee Corso – a former Navy assistant coach (1966-68), Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard, David Pollack, research producer and sports betting analyst Chris ‘The Bear’ Fallica, and reporters Jen Lada and Gene Wojciechowski.
2011 Heisman Trophy winner and current ESPN analyst Robert Griffin III will make a special guest appearance on GameDay to discuss the Heisman race, the bowl season and Army-Navy. Griffin, who is from a military family, was born in Okinawa, Japan, where his parents – both U.S. Army sergeants – were stationed.
All four 2021 Heisman Trophy finalists – defensive end Aidan Hutchinson (Michigan), and quarterbacks Kenny Pickett (Pittsburgh), C.J. Stroud (Ohio State) and Bryce Young (Alabama) – will also join GameDay before Saturday night’s ceremony in New York City (8 p.m., ESPN).
College GameDay Army-Navy Highlights:
- Coach Monken: Army head coach Jeff Monken will join the show live before leading the Black Knights on Saturday at MetLife Stadium. His team has already accepted a bid to the upcoming Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dec. 22, vs. Missouri on ESPN).
- Dignitaries: Special guests from the United States Army and Navy and both academies will include General Mark A. Milley (Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff); Joint Chiefs leaders Admiral Michael Gilday (Chief of Naval Operations) and General James C. McConville (Chief of Staff of the Army); Vice Admiral Sean Buck, Superintendent of the U.S. Naval Academy; and Lieutenant General Darryl A. Williams, Superintendent of the U.S. Military Academy.
- Step by Step: Army star linebacker Arik Smith comes from a family with a long line of military service, but Smith’s journey to the football field – and West Point – needed help from an early age. Reporter: Gene Wojciechowski.
- A Path and a Purpose: After playing for Navy in the early 2000s, Bryce McDonald entered into his military service poised to serve his country just as his family had before him. But after getting injured in an attack overseas, McDonald woke up in a hospital with a severely damaged leg and his life’s trajectory completely altered. In his lowest moment, he caught a glimpse of his future when the Army-Navy game was on his television. Reporter: Jen Lada.
- A Day in the Life: From a 3 a.m. wake up call, to afternoon tennis and special moments with his son, every day is a full day for Navy head coach Ken Niumatalolo, but his focus is always the same…Beat Army. Reporter: Gene Wojciechowski.
- Get Their Goat: On the field, Army trails Navy in their all-time series, but off the field it’s a different story. The Cadets have often shown a real knack for nappings…goat-nappings. Reporter: Gene Wojciechowski.
Stats from ‘The Bear’/Corso Facts:
- This is the eighth straight year GameDay is at the Army-Navy Game
- This is the fourth different Army-Navy site from which GameDay has originated – Baltimore, Philadelphia, West Point, East Rutherford
- Coach Corso – a former Navy assistant coach – has picked the Midshipmen all seven previous times – and it will likely be an eighth. He’s 3-4 in those picks
- This is GameDay’s 418th road show and headgear pick No. 381.
In addition to College GameDay, ESPN’s Saturday college football schedule on Dec. 11 features the Heisman Trophy Ceremony and quarterfinal games in the FCS Playoffs.