Navy head coach Paul Johnson comments

Navy head coach Paul Johnson spoke to the media about the 31-21 loss to Rutgers.

Q. Obviously a tough way to end a four-game winning streak.

A. Yeah, I think you have to give Rutgers credit. Their kids played hard. We didn't play particularly well. We aren't the kind of football team that can turn the ball over and expect to win. I thought we had a chance to come back there in the second half. The fumble call was crucial. I think if we get that we are in pretty good shape. You have to give them credit. Every time we scored they took it back down and answered. We made far too many mistakes to win that game.

Q. Any positives you can take away from this game?

A. I thought we came back in the second half and got back in the game for a little bit, but you have to give them credit. Both teams had the ball one time in the third quarter. We took the ball to start the second half and drove down and scored and they came right back and answered. They ended up having to kick a field goal, but they ate up some time. I think the next time we had the ball we had to punt and that was all she wrote.

Q. Coach, can you talk about how your ground attack did today?

A. We didn't play very well. We hit some plays, but I think you have to give them some credit. They didn't do anything that we didn't expect. They lined up today the way they did two years ago. They just executed better than we did.

Q. Their first half scoring drivers were 30, 30 and 32 yards. Can you talk about the field position?

A. Yeah it's what I said, turnovers. The first one we turned the ball over, the second one they drove the ball down and then punted it deep in our territory and then we got a penalty. We were our own worst enemy in the first half. We turn the ball over twice and get a penalty deep in our territory. You can't play that way.

Q. Coach, can you talk about Ryan Hart and the way he performed today?

A. I thought he did what he had to do for them to win the game. I thought he played well. The guy I've been impressed with all year is #23. I think the kids a great football player. He does so much for them. They executed. When it was 24-21 and we had them third and eight with about four or five minutes to go we knew they were going to run the screen, we were yelling for the screen, everybody on the field knew it was going to be a screen and they still threw it for a first down. That's tough.

Q. Other than just execute better did you change anything in the second half? You moved the ball a lot better in the second half.

A. It wasn't anything we changed. In the first half we just weren't holding on to it. It's hard to move it if you are throwing it to them or whatever. How many times did we punt in the first half? It was more of a case of self-inflicted wounds.

Q. You just have to try and rebound and come back next week.

A. That's all you can do. Come back and try to play better. We all have to do a better job. I have to do a better job and we have to do a better job executing. We did about everything we could do to lose the game. We kicked the ball out of bounds on a kickoff, we didn't punt the ball particularly well, we turned the ball over three times, you can't do that and beat anybody. We definitely can't do that and win the game.

Q. How different do you think the Rutgers team is this year compared to last year?

A. I don't think there's that much difference, honestly.

Q. The two calls. They ended up getting 10 points out of those two calls. Don't you think that was crucial?

A. Those things are always crucial, but I'm not going to crutch the game on that. That doesn't have anything to do with us turning the ball over three times. It's very disappointing.

Q. Do you have any sense on the play in the end zone if Biles intercepted the ball?

A. I thought it was an interception, but clearly they didn't. That's the way it works.

Q. What was your view on the fumble play?

A. It happened right in front of me. It was close. I thought it was a fumble when they all threw the beanbags. Without the chance of seeing the replay I don't know. What did they say, that his knee was down? You guys got to see the replay, what did it look like?

Q. It was a bang bang call, it was close.

A. It sure took a long time for it to be conclusive evidence to overturn it.

Q. Can you talk about Andrew Tattersall?

A. I thought Andrew did a nice job today rushing the quarterback. He was about the only guy getting back there.

Q. The fumble play looked close enough not to overturn.

A. Yeah.


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