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12/30/12

ASU 62 NAVY 28

NAVY FOOTBALL 2012  BOWL GAME                        Observations from an Olde Poolie

December 29, 2012. Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl.  Arizona State University 62 Navy 28.  On a good day for football (50 degrees) before over 34,000 fans, including about 1100 midshipmen, in the San Francisco Giants baseball field – by the Bay; the Arizona State Sundevils completely overpowered Navy with their fast paced, no huddle, offense. Before the Midshipmen woke up it was 21-0 in the first quarter. ASU scored on it's first nine possessions. Most of their drives  required less than three minutes.

"Congratulations to Arizona State. They played a great game and whipped our butts." Navy head coach Ken Niumatalolo said. "I wish we could have played better and kept the game more competitive. It was a thorough whipping – not just playing, but coaching. I didn't do a very good job of getting our team ready to play."

The Midshipmen had a few opportunities to keep the game close on offense in the first half but Gee Gee Green was unable to hold on to a pass in the end zone on fourth and seven from the 31 and Reynolds lost three on third and one from the eight. Then Sloan missed a 33 yard field goal attempt. It was 34 – 7 at the half. ASU scored four more TDs in the third quarter. Gee GEE Green returned a kick-off 95 yards for Navy's only TD in the third quarter.

ASU piled up 648 yards on offense. Navy had 313 rushing but only 37 passing. The Midshipmen had the ball for over 33 minutes to ASU's 26 minutes.

After the  Army game the Midshipmen had exams and only had six one-hour practices at 6 am. A few days leave then regrouped in San Francisco on December 24. Meanwhile ASU had a month to prepare for Navy's triple option. They came to play!

After a 1-3 start, Navy – behind freshman QB Keenan Reynolds -  won seven of eight contests and the Commander in Chief's Trophy. They showed a lot of grit to pull their season together.  

Note:  Plebe Rafi Montalvo, the third team quarterback who  incurred serious injuries in a car accident on Thanksgiving, is doing much better. At first the doctors were very conservative as to his condition. "The outlook was bleaker than bleak. The doctors told us they were just trying to keep Rafi alive," Ralph Montalvo said of the first report he received of his son. Three weeks later the doctors were amazed at the young man's rapid recovery.  He has made remarkable improvement.  The nurses call him the "Miracle Kid". The doctors now think that he may be able to return to the Academy and might even be able to play football again. 

Next year.  Navy loses some excellent players but also will return some experienced and talented young men.             On offense: two offensive lineman, one wide receiver, and two slotbacks will graduate. On defense Two defensive ends, two linebackers, and the rover back that started will graduate. Navy's depth chart for the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl included 29 sophomores and freshmen.  QB Reynolds (Fr) and fullbacks Copeland (So.) and Swain (Fr.)  plus QB Miller (Jr.); and some promising slotbacks return. The defense will return a number of starters plus alternates who gained valuable experience. The punter is a sophomore and the place-kicker is a freshman. Also Coach Niumatalolo should keep all of the assistant coaches. That is important for continuity and for recruiting.

2013  Schedule.

Sept. 7  at Indiana
Sept. 14  Delaware
Sept. 28  at Western Kentucky
Oct. 5  Air Force
Oct. 12  at Duke
Oct. 19 at Toledo
Oct. 26 Pittsburgh  (HC)
Nov. 2  at Notre Dame
Nov. 9 Hawaii
Nov. 16 South Alabama
Nov. 23  at San Jose State
Dec. 14  ARMY (Philly.)

GO NAVY!


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