Video: Hassin, A-Rod lead raids on insurgents before football camp

Jared Hassin endured a summer at Camp Buckner, as seen in the latest "Inside Academy Football." (Danny Wild/USMA)

A quick plug for the recently-aired Inside Academy Football series, the latest of which featured Army sophomore fullback Jared Hassin and junior linebacker Andrew Rodriguez. You can watch the 30-minute USMA episode here:

CBS College Sports produced three new episodes, tagging along with players from West Point, Navy and Air Force. Hassin, Army’s main offensive weapon this year, is seen as just another face amidst his class of sophomores at Camp Buckner. The Wisconsin native is filmed jumping off high-strung cables into a lake and dominating a water obstacle course designed to test the fear factor of all cadets. He goes on patrol with his unit through the woods, avoids enemy artillery fire in total darkness and helps setup a perimeter to take down a suspected IED-planting “insurgent.”

Andrew Rodriguez's back injury is documented in the CBS show. (Danny Wild/USMA)

Meanwhile, over in Annapolis, the Mids are seen debating the flavors of popsicles (“cherry is the best,” one insists) and watching a team talent/magic show after practice. But they at least put in a lot of hours on the practice field — in Colorado, the Air Force football team is a no-show; cadets are out on their own, and those left back at the academy are seen at a youth sports summer camp in the forms, flying little beginner airplanes, going on vacation to water parks… Rodriguez goes to Fort Benning, Ga., and leads a team through a combat training mission in which they’re attacked from every angle. He heads to Italy and presents a project to high-ranking US Army Africa leadership on improving operations in the region.

Navy’s Ricky Dobbs goes home, eats dinner and watches fireworks.

Anyway, in all seriousness, all three are worth watching.

So is Saturday’s potentially epic battle between Army and Air Force, of which I will miss due to a wedding I’m going to (so, no photos, at least none from me). Air Force may well be the best team Army faces this season, especially with the way Navy played against Duke last weekend. Notre Dame seems beatable.

The Unbalanced Line blog has some thoughts on the win over VMI and this weekend’s game. It sounds like Mike Gann and Steve Anderson will be ready to go, same for Raymond Maples and Marcus Hilton, who said he’s “coming in this week, fired up and ready to go especially with a rivalry game like this.”

The most entertaining, though, are the blogs from Anderson, Army’s senior captain who is on a mission to get a win this Saturday.

“I go to bed thinking of the Air Force offense and Tim Jefferson,” Anderson said. “I wake up thinking about how this is our chance to show that the Army defense is superior then the Air Force defense.”

I would be fairly terrified to be Tim Jefferson knowing, somewhere in West Point, Steve Anderson is staring up at his dark ceiling thinking only about you. Anderson spoke at a rally this week, which included a bonfire to fire up the Corps for Saturday.

Also, some love for senior co-captain Carson Homme, a long-snapper who saw a little time last week at DE. He’s got a 3.92 GPA (think about that for a moment) and, along with Jordan Trimble (3.77) could be an ESPN Academic All-American this year.

Carson Homme has a nearly perfect GPA at West Point. (Danny WIld/USMA)


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