Incidents of sexual assault and other unwanted sexual contact at the three military service academies have spiked nearly 50 percent since 2016, defense officials announced on Thursday.

The term "unwanted sexual contact" is used to describe behaviors that constitute sexual assault under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, including rape, aggravated sexual contact, and abusive sexual contact, said Nate Galbreath, deputy director of the Pentagon's Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office.

A total of 747 midshipmen and cadets responded that they had been the victim of unwanted sexual contact as part of a biennial survey, compared with 507 victims in 2016, Galbreath told reporters on Thursday as the Pentagon released its annual report on sexual harassment and violence at the military service academies.

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U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Alexia Riveracorrea

Students at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, may see the end of the long-standing rating, midshipman.

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Department of Defense photo by Marv Lynchard

On Dec. 12, the Black Knights of the U.S. Military Academy and the Midshipmen of the U.S. Naval Academy will play their 116th football game against each other. For some service members, especially members of the officer corps, this weekend is the military’s game day to beat all game days. If you’ll be one of many Americans watching the game, Task & Purpose’s Joe Ruzicka has a great rundown of what you can expect. However, if you’re a service member who isn’t an alum of either academy, then like me, you might not feel compelled to watch this, or any, matchup between the service academies.

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Screenshot via Youtube

The football rivalry between the Army’s Black Knights and Navy’s Midshipmen teams has come a long way from brutal brawls on the field to where it is now, with the two teams trolling each other with pre-game movie spoofs.

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