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Navy Midshipmen football
United State Naval Academy Logo-sports.png Navyhelmet.png
First season 1879
Athletic director Chet Gladchuk
Head coach Ken Niumatalolo
2nd year, 18–10  (.643)
Home stadium Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium
Stadium capacity 34,000
Stadium surface FieldTurf
Location Annapolis, Maryland
Conference Independent
All-time record 640–520–57 (.549)
Postseason bowl record 7–8–1
Claimed national titles 1
Heisman winners 2
Consensus All-Americans 23
Colors Navy Blue and Gold            
Fight song Anchors Aweigh
Mascot Bill the Goat
Marching band United States Naval Academy Drum and Bugle Corps
Rivals Air Force Falcons
Army Black Knights
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Maryland Terrapins
Website NavySports.com

The Navy Midshipmen football team represents the United States Naval Academy in NCAA Division I-A college football. They are a Division I Football Bowl Subdivision independent school (not in a conference) and coached by Ken Niumatalolo since December 2007. Navy has 19 players and 3 coaches in the College Football Hall of Fame and won the National Championship in 1926 according to the Boand and Houlgate poll systems. The 1910 team also was undefeated and unscored upon (the lone tie being a 0–0 tie).[1] The mascot is Bill the Goat.

Contents

Rivalries

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Army

The Army–Navy Game, an annual game generally played on the last weekend of the college football regular season in early December, pits the football teams of the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York (Army) and United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland (Navy) against one another. It is one of the most traditional and enduring rivalries in college football, and is televised every year by CBS. It was in the 1963 Army–Navy game that instant replay made its debut.

This game has always had inter-service "bragging rights" at stake; in past decades, when both Army and Navy were often national powers, the game occasionally had national championship implications. However, as top-level college football has developed into primarily a training ground for the National Football League (NFL), the high academic entrance requirements, height and weight limits, and the military commitment required of West Point and Annapolis graduates has reduced the overall competitiveness of both academies. In fact, only once in the last 40 years have both Army and Navy entered the game with winning records (1996).

While Navy has had a resurgence in recent years, Army is no longer nationally competitive on a regular basis, however, the tradition of the game has ensured that it remains nationally televised to this day. One of the great appeals of this game to many fans is that its players are largely playing for the love of the game, since almost none will ever play in the NFL. The game is especially emotional for the seniors, called "first classmen" by both academies, since it is typically the last competitive football game they will ever play. (The 1996 game was an aberration, as both Army and Navy went to bowl games afterwards, and Navy has gone to a bowl game in each season since 2003.) During wartime the game is even more emotional because some seniors will not return once they are deployed. For instance, in the 2004 game, at least one senior from the class of 2003 who was killed in Iraq, Navy's J. P. Blecksmith, was remembered. The players placed their comrade's pads and jerseys on chairs on the sidelines. Much of the sentiment of the game goes out to those who share the uniform and who are overseas.

Commander-in-Chief's Trophy

The Navy side of the Commander-in-Chief’s trophy
Navy celebrates winning the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy after winning the 2005 Army–Navy Game on December 3, 2005.

The Commander-in-Chief's Trophy is awarded to each season's winner of the triangular college football series among the United States Military Academy (Army), the United States Naval Academy (Navy), and the United States Air Force Academy (Air Force). In the event of a tie the award is shared, but the previous winner retains the trophy. Navy has controlled the trophy since 2003, marking one of the longest times any academy has had possession of the prestigious trophy.

First awarded in 1972. the Commander-in-Chief's trophy was the idea of Air Force General George B. Simler, the commander of Air Training Command and former Air Force Academy athletic director; who felt the need for such a trophy as a means to ensure the Air Force games played against traditional rivals Army and Navy were given some meaning at least slightly more significant than all other normal collegiate opponents that those two storied programs were to play on any given Saturday.

Typically, the Navy–Air Force game is played in early October, the Army–Air Force game is played in mid-November, and the most significant game, between Army and Navy is played in early December, typically in Philadelphia. The game, however, has also been played in such locations as New York, Baltimore, Chicago and Pasadena.

When Navy has possession of the trophy, it is displayed in a glass case in Bancroft Hall, the Midshipmens' dormitory.

Notre Dame

Navy has played Notre Dame, also an independent, in 82 annual games without interruption since 1927 with a record of 11–71–1. From 1963, when Navy beat Notre Dame 35–14, to 2006, Notre Dame won 43 consecutive games against Navy, the longest such streak in Division 1-A football. This streak ended on November 3, 2007, when Navy beat Notre Dame 46–44 in triple overtime. Notre Dame plays this game to repay Navy for helping to keep Notre Dame financially afloat during World War II. This series is scheduled to continue indefinitely. In 2008, while the Midshipmen had the opportunity to pull another victory at the end, however the game ended in a 27-21 victory for Notre Dame. On November 7, 2009 Navy played an inspired game and upset the #22 ranked Irish 23 to 21 in South Bend. This was Navy's 2nd win in 3 years, marking a turning point in the rivalry, whereby Navy is once again competitive with Notre Dame.

When Navy is the home team for this game in even-numbered years, the Midshipmen host the game off-campus at large stadiums used by NFL teams, usually FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland or M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. The Midshipmen have also hosted the Irish at John F. Kennedy Stadium and Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia.

Maryland

A snap during the 2005 Navy-Maryland game.

The intrastate rivalry between Maryland and Navy is referred to as the "Crab Bowl Classic." Starting in 1905, the two teams have played sporadically over the years. Many of the early games were lop-sided and Navy leads the series 14–6. In 2005, the two teams met in their most recent game and Maryland won, 23–20. The two schools are scheduled to play again to open the 2010 season.

Rutgers

This rivalry stems from Navy and Rutgers being two of the only three programs (the third is Army) to come out of the original, informal "Ivy League" that are still members of the top tier of NCAA college football (currently Division I-FBS). (See Before There Was An Ivy League and Ivy League#History of the athletic league.) Although the two teams only began a regular series relatively recently in 1995, the games between the two schools are often close and sometimes have controversy as in the 2004 and 2007 editions of the series. The rivalry dates to 1891 making the two schools each other's oldest active football rivals. The schools have met 23 times with the series tied at 11–11–1 all time after the 2008 Navy victory. Army is Rutgers' second oldest active rivalry. Navy and Rutgers have played every year since 1995 with the exception of 2002 and are currently scheduled through at least 2014.

Gansz Trophy

The Gansz Trophy was created in 2009 through a collaboration between the athletic departments of The United States Naval Academy and Southern Methodist University[2]. The trophy is named for Frank Gansz who played linebacker at the Naval Academy from 1957 through 1959. Gansz later served on the coaching staffs at numerous colleges, including all three service academies and Southern Methodist, as well as several professional teams.

1926 national championship

1926 national championship team

Three undefeated teams with nearly identical records would cause a stir among fans and pollsters today, but this was the case when Navy earned its lone national championship in 1926, as the Midshipmen shared the honor with Stanford and Alabama. A 7-7 tie between Alabama and Stanford in the 1926 Rose Bowl gave Stanford a 10-0-1 mark, while the Crimson Tide and the Mids each had identical 9-0-1 records. The Midshipmen opened the '26 season with a new coach, Bill Ingram. A former Navy standout from 1916-1918, Ingram took over a Navy team that had only won seven games in the previous two seasons combined. One of the keys to Navy’s 1926 squad was a potent offense led by All-America tackle and team captain Frank Wickhorst, who proved to be a punishing blocker for the Navy offense. One member of the Navy offense that appreciated the blocking of Wickhorst was Tom Hamilton. The quarterback and kicker had a pair of 100-yard rushing games en route to All-America honors. Navy's biggest win that year was against Michigan in front of 80,000 fans in Baltimore. The Mids scored 10 second half points to upset the Wolverines, 10-0. Navy’s offense tallied 165 yards behind the powering attack of Hamilton and Henry Caldwell who scored Navy’s lone touchdown on a one-yard plunge. Jubilation from the victory continued after the game, as the Midshipmen tore down the goal post at each end of the field and carried away all the markers that lined both sides of the field.

Navy headed into its season finale against Army with a 9-0 record. The game was to be played in Chicago at Soldier Field, which had been built as a memorial to the men killed in World War I. It was only natural Army and Navy would be invited to play the inaugural contest there. James R. Harrison of the New York Times described the game as "the greatest of its time and as a national spectacle." Over 110,000 people witnessed the Midshipmen open up a 14-0 lead on the Cadets, only to see Army fight back to take a 21-14 lead early in the third quarter. The Navy offense responded behind its strong ground game led by running back Alan Shapley. On fourth down and three yards to go, Shapley ran eight yards for a touchdown to tie the game at 21. As the final quarter concluded, Army mounted a brief threat only to miss a 25-yard field goal. The tie gave the Midshipmen a share of the national championship based on retroactive rankings by both the William Boand and Deke Houlgate mathematical poll systems.[1]

Bowl results

Navy Bowl Scoreboard (Won 7, Lost 8, Tied 1)
Season Bowl game Opponent Result Notes
1924 Rose Bowl Washington T 14-14
1955 Sugar Bowl Mississippi W 21-0 "Team Named Desire"
1958 Cotton Bowl Classic Rice W 20-7
1961 Orange Bowl Missouri L 21-14 1960 Heisman Trophy winner Joe Bellino
1964 Cotton Bowl Classic Texas L 28-6 Texas was ranked #1 and Navy #2
1978 Holiday Bowl BYU W 23-16 Inaugural Holiday Bowl, Navy ranked #17 in final UPI Poll
1980 Garden State Bowl Houston L 35-0
1981 Liberty Bowl Ohio State L 31-28
1996 Aloha Bowl California W 42-38
2003 Houston Bowl Texas Tech L 38-14
2004 Emerald Bowl New Mexico W 34-19 Navy ranked #24 in final AP & Coaches' Polls
2005 Poinsettia Bowl Colorado State W 51-30 Inaugural Poinsettia Bowl
2006 Meineke Car Care Bowl Boston College L 25-24
2007 Poinsettia Bowl Utah L 35-32
2008 EagleBank Bowl Wake Forest L 29-19 Inaugural EagleBank Bowl
2009 Texas Bowl Missouri W 35-13

Coaches

The current coach is Ken Niumatalolo.

Navy Coaches, by year, through December 12, 2009
Coach (Alma Mater) Seasons Years Games W L T Pct.
Vauix Carter 1 1882 1 1 0 0 1.000
Ben Crosby (Yale) 1 1892 7 5 2 0 .714
Josh Hartwell (Yale) 1 1893 8 5 3 0 .625
Bill Wurtenburg (Yale) 1 1894 7 4 1 2 .714
Matt McClung (Lehigh) 1 1895 7 5 2 0 .714
Johnny Poe (Princeton) 1 1896 8 5 3 0 .625
Bill Armstrong (Yale) 3 1897-99 25 19 5 1 .780
Garrett Cochran (Princeton) 1 1900 9 6 3 0 .667
Doc Hillebrand (Princeton) 2 1901-02 21 8 11 2 .429
Burr Chamberlain (Yale) 1 1903 12 4 7 1 .375
Paul Dashiell (Lehigh) 3 1904 34 25 5 4 .794
Joe Reeves (USNA) 1 1907 12 9 2 1 .741
Frank Berrien (USNA) 3 1908-10 29 21 5 3 .776
Doug Howard (USNA) 4 1911-14 36 25 7 4 .750
Jonas H. Ingram (USNA) 2 1915-16 19 9 8 2 .526
Gil Dobie (Minnesota) 3 1917-19 20 17 3 0 .850
Bob Folwell (Penn) 5 1920-24 38 24 12 2 .658
Jack Owsley (Yale) 1 1925 8 5 2 1 .688
Bill Ingram (USNA) 5 1926-30 49 32 13 4 .694
Rip Miller (Notre Dame) 3 1931-33 29 12 15 2 .448
Tom Hamilton (USNA) 5 1934-36, 46-47 45 21 23 1 .478
Hank Hardwick (USNA) 2 1937-38 18 8 7 3 .528
Swede Larson (USNA) 3 1939-41 27 16 8 3 .648
Billick Whelchel (USNA) 2 1942-43 18 13 5 0 .722
Oscar Hagberg (USNA) 2 1944-45 18 13 4 1 .750
George Sauer (Nebraska) 2 1948-49 18 3 13 2 .222
Eddie Erdelatz (St. Mary's) 9 1950-58 84 50 26 8 .643
Wayne Hardin (Coll. of Pacific) 6 1959-64 62 38 22 2 .629
Bill Elias (Maryland) 4 1965-68 40 15 22 3 .413
Rick Forzano (Kent State) 4 1969-72 43 10 33 0 .233
George Welsh (USNA) 9 1973-81 102 55 46 1 .544
Gary Tranquill (Wittenberg) 5 1982-86 55 20 34 1 .373
Elliot Uzelac (W. Michigan) 3 1987-89 33 8 25 0 .242
George Chaump (Bloomsburg) 5 1990-94 55 14 41 0 .255
Charlie Weatherbie (Okla. St.) 7 1995-2001 75 30 45 0 .400
Rick Lantz (Central Conn. St.) <1 2001 3 0 3 0 .000
Paul Johnson (W. Carolina) 6 2002-2007 74 45 29 0 .608
Ken Niumatalolo (Hawaiʻi) 2 2007-Present 28 18 10 0 .643

Individual award winners

Retired football jerseys[3]
Number Player

12 Roger Staubach
27 Joe Bellino
30 Napoleon McCallum

Heisman Trophy

Maxwell Award

Other awards

College Football Hall of Fame

Navy has 19 players and 3 coaches in the College Football Hall of Fame:

Facilities

  • Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium
  • Ricketts Hall – This building contains the locker room for the varsity football team and offices for football, basketball, and lacrosse.[4] It also contains the Jack Lengyel Sports Conditioning Facility, which is one of three "strength and conditioning facilities" at the academy. The weight-room facility serves football, men's lacrosse, baseball and wrestling.[5]
  • Rip Miller Field – Named for Edgar Miller, who was the Navy head football coach for three seasons (1931-1933). The field is used by both lacrosse and sprint football.[5]
  • Wesley Brown Field House – The field house has a full-length, 76,000-square-foot, retractable Magic Carpet AstroTurf football field.

See also

References

External links


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