Report Card: Navy vs. Louisiana Tech

In a repeat of last year's contest the Navy Midshipmen fell behind the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs and once again rallied for a, 37-23, win. Ricky Dobbs threw for a career high 219 yards and the Navy defense shutout Louisiana Tech in the second half to secure the win.




Louisiana Tech


Ricky Dobbs completed 8 of 14 attempts for a career high 219 yards. Dobbs threw one touchdown and had one interception. On the first series Dobbs rolled out and hit sophomore Brandon Turner in stride for a 63-yard completion to set up the Mids first touchdown. Dobbs made a beautiful throw on third-and-9 to slot back John Howell for a 25-yard touchdown. Greg Jones had two catches for 68 yards including a 47-yard catch that set up a first half field goal. Gee Gee Greene led all Navy receivers with three catches for 58 yards. Navy's offensive line which historically has struggling in pass protection did a solid job and allowed only one sack. There were a few blemishes that kept this from an A+. For the second year in a row against the Bulldogs, Doug Furman dropped a potential big play Dobbs pass that hit him right in the hands. Driving for a touchdown Dobbs underthrew Mike Stukel who was open and his pass was picked off.
Navy finished the game with four rushing touchdowns, 311 rushing yards and averaging 4.9 yards per carry. It wasn't as easy as it sounds. The Mids struggled running early as the Bulldogs played with 10 in the box. After Ricky Dobbs made them pay with his passing the Mids returned to playing Navy football. They finished strong with 239 yards rushing in the second half. Dobbs absorbed a number of hits as he grinded away for 78 yards and scored a touchdown. The "B" backs pounded out 85 yards with Vince Murray scoring a touchdown. Gee Gee Greene showed his explosive burst as he led Navy with 87 yards on just six carries. Kriss Procter did an excellent job relieving Dobbs after he was shaken up. Proctor pitched to slot back Gee Gee Greene on a fourth and two play for a 17 yard gain to keep a drive alive. Proctor then ran the final 7 yards for a touchdown that put Navy ahead 30-23 for good. After struggling with ball security in the opener Navy had no fumbles for the second straight game.
Louisiana Tech quarterback Colby Cameron completed 31 of 43 passes for 252 yards and a touchdown pass. The Bulldogs nearly passed the Mids out of the stadium in the first half with their no huddle spread passing attack that moved the chains and kept Navy on the field a lot longer than usual. After probably earning a failing grade in pass defense in the first half the Mids turned the tables and shutout the Bulldogs in the second half. Jerry Hauburger forced wide receiver Jacarri Jackson to fumble with a big hit on Louisiana Tech's opening drive of the second half. Wyatt Middleton (7 tackles) recovered the fumble. Cornerback Kevin Edwards intercepted a pass by Tech quarterback Colby Cameron that set up a touchdown. Defensive end Billy Yarborough recorded 1 1/2 sacks. Defensive end Jabaree Tuani (6 tackles, 1/2 sack) showed his tremendous athleticism in rushing Cameron then turning and tackling running back Lyle Fitte short of a first down to force a field goal. Max Blue played well and ended the Bulldogs last offensive series with an interception. The Mids missed the play of free safety Emmett Merchant who was out with a concussion.
The Mids allowed 176 yards rushing and a touchdown. Navy struggled early with the blistering tempo of the Bulldog offense as the multiple receiver sets created running lanes. Louisiana Tech scored on five consecutive possessions. Tyler Simmons was in on thirteen tackles and had a huge stop on third and one to force punt at the start of the fourth quarter. Outside linebacker Aaron McCauley was everywhere with fourteen tackles. Fellow outside linebacker Jerry Hamburger had his best game as a Mid. He recorded eight tackles. He ran down Colby Cameron on a scramble to force field goal. There were way too many missed tackles early in the game but the defense shutout the Bulldogs in the second half
Navy fans have to be asking "Who is this punter wearing Delahooke's jersey and what have you done with Kyle?" Delahooke has a career punting average of 42.4 yards, second all-time at Navy, yet has been very erratic this year. After booming a 48-yard punt Kyle shanked his second one. The 26-yard punt set up Tech's first touchdown. For the game Delahooke's three punts averaged 36.3 yards. Joe Buckley hit a 37-yard field goal but missed the first extra point of his career. The Mids caught a break when Tech's super return specialist Phillip Livas, who has six career returns for touchdowns and returned a punt return 85 yards for a touchdown against Navy, missed the game with a concussion. Despite the break the Mids kickoff coverage teams gave up 56 and 41 yard returns. Alex Teich didn't find much daylight on his six kickoff returns.
Great job of adjustments by Navy. Louisiana Tech took away the running game early and offensive coordinator Ivan Jasper countered by opened up the passing game. The Mids returned to pounding the ball in the second half and held the ball for over 22 minutes. Defensive coordinator Buddy Green settled down his team after they were outclassed in first half and then shutout the Bulldogs in the second half.
A week after the defense carried the offense, the roles were reversed this game. Great to see Ricky demonstrate his terrific passing ability and have a career day. Great adjustments at halftime by the defense. With Air Force on the horizon and the Mids battling injuries the bye week couldn't come at a better time.

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