After as brutal a start to the season as any in recent history the Navy Midshipmen have simple goals this week, learn, forget, and move on.
The first three weeks of the season have been nothing but a blur for a young Mids team who spent much of the game on Saturday looking like they were still a little shell-shocked from the Dublin experience. After Notre Dame validated their status as a team to watch this year with a comprehensive victory of Michigan State and Penn State put their pieces together for the first time this year, Navy has to accept that they just weren't good enough on the day to take down either of their BCS opponents.
Now, though, the schedule gets softer, much softer, and Ken Niumatalolo will be able to coach up his young team in match ups where there won't be at such a size and talent disadvantage. The Mids know they can play. Looking purely at the stats Navy was able to run on Penn State (245 yards), stop the Penn State rushing attack (110 yards), and outgain the Nittany Lions overall (371 yards to 341). Now the team has to show that it can play a full 60 minute ball game without making game changing mistakes.
Turnovers killed the Mids against Penn State. It is hard to win any game when you are minus four in the turnover battle even when the teams are on even footing in terms of talent, but when Navy iis negative four against a BCS team it is going to be a long day. For the triple option to be effective ball security is completely invaluable. As the opposite of a quick strike offense you cannot march the ball downfield then fumble. Nothing hurts Navy more than a sustained drive leading to a turnover leading to a quick score.
Navy can win every single remaining game they play, but the fumblitis has to be fixed.
Another boost for the Academy will be that they finally get to play at home. It is now four weeks into the season and there cannot be many teams left in the country who have not yet played in front of their fellow students. It is vitally important that the crowd is as loud and raucous as it ever has been this weekend against VMI as home crowds mean everything in the world of college football.
More than anything it is important the Mids believe that they can turn this season around. There are still ten games to go and as mentioned earlier Navy will have a shot to win in every one of them. It is hard to press reset after two weeks of getting blown out, but Ken Niumatalolo earns his pay by getting his squad to do just that. If he is successful there is no doubt that this season will get turned around in a hurry.
Now Navy's season really begins
GoMids.com Top Stories
Head to Head: Navy at Air ForceBoth are undefeated heading into the contest and the winner will likely be getting some Top 25 buzz on the reverse side. Also either Navy or Air Force has won the Commander-in…
GoMids.comYesterday at 12:42 PM
Three Keys: Navy at Air ForceThis is, of course, the first game of the Commender-in-Chief's Trophy series, a series that Navy are the defending champions. It is fair to say that after four weeks of the season…
GoMids.comThursday at 1:09 PM
Air Force: First LookThe Mids opponents this Saturday will be an Air Force team that is traveling to Annapolis for the first match of the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy. These are to two remaining…
GoMids.comTuesday at 10:49 AM
Navy Football ResetIt feels like the 2016 football season has just started, yet we are already (without a bowl game) a quarter of the way through the schedule.
Navy Report Card: TulaneThe Navy Midshipmen (3-0) continued their unbeaten start to the season with a 21-14 win over the Tulane Green Wave (1-2) in New Orleans.