2012 Navy Report Card: Coaching

GoMids.com continues its review of the 2012 8-5 Navy Midshipmen's season, position-by-position. Today we review the Mids' coaching of 2012.

Coaching: A
Ken Niumatalolo has led the Midshipmen to a 40-26 record as head coach. This season may have been Niumatalolo's best coaching job. He incorporated 14 freshmen into the lineup and had 17 players make their first career start. Navy opened the year with two blowout losses. After the first month of the season the Mids' record stood at a dismal 1-3. Navy, coming off their first losing season since 2002, entered October having won just four of their previous 14 games. It looked like Navy had sunk into mediocrity.

Niumatalolo had his team keep the faith and a five game winning streak righted the ship. Niumatalolo led the team to a huge road win over Air Force to start the streak. He then made the gutsy call to insert freshman Keenan Reynolds in as starter. His win over Air Force ultimately returned the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy back to Annapolis for the first time since 2009. Niumatalolo is just the third coach in school history to win his first five games against Army.

Offensive coordinator Ivin Jasper did a terrific job getting freshman Keenan Reynolds ready to play so early in his career. The offense averaged 29.9 points per game with Reynolds at quarterback. Jasper deserves credit for allowing Reynolds to play and not trying to limit him like many offensive coordinators tend to do with freshmen.

Defensive coordinator Buddy Green had a couple of tough games but his defense allowed just 18.8 points per game over the final ten weeks leading up to the bowl game. Navy was outstanding in red zone defense all year, tying for the 19th-best red zone defense in the country. The season ending blowout bowl loss to Arizona State doesn't diminish how well Green's defense performed after the two season opening losses.

GoMids.com Top Stories