Sunday, October 24, 2010
Anchors Aweigh! United States Naval Academy Torpedoes Notre Dame
There used to be a time when it was a given that whenever the midshipmen of the United States Naval Academy got on the football field with the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, the end result was a Notre Dame victory. For 43 straight years(dating back to when Roger Staubach played for the Mids, the former heisman trophy winner and Dallas Cowboy hall of famer) Notre Dame owned this rivalry(if you could call it that). Many times it wasn't even close. Yet, yesterday in New Meadowlands Stadium, these two teams met again for another epic battle. And, when it was all said and done, the end result was another blowout. However, if I told you beforehand that the final score would be 35-17 in favor of Navy you would have laughed. That was the final score in a rivalry where the balance of power has shifted in favor of the Naval Academy, and has a once proud Notre Dame football program clearly reeling. The Navy offense sailed to more than 430 yards against the Irish D, fueled by the perfomances of its cruiser-qb Ricky Dobbs, who ran for three touchdowns and threw for another, and its destroyer, fullback Alexander Teich, who ran for over 200 yards and caught Dobbs only touchdown pass. Defensively, the Midshipmen never really allowed the Irish to get into the flow of things, harassing quarterback Dayne Crist all day, including a few sacks and a couple of interceptions. While this lopsided loss by Notre Dame underlies just how far this storied program has fallen, it should also serve notice that the Navy football program, once considered division I football doormats, can no longer be taken lightly. Because what other conclusion can one come to when they soundly beat a program that is supposed to beat them every year?