Homecoming has been an American tradition since the early 20th century.
Alumni return to their Alma Mater for fun, festivities and football.
The Naval Academy held their first Homecoming football game in 1950,
a 22-0 loss to Northwestern. All time Navy is 36-20 on Homecoming.
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October 20, 2007
Homecoming has been an American tradition since the early 20th
century. Alumni return to their Alma Mater for fun, festivities and
football. The Naval Academy held their first Homecoming football game in
1950, a 22-0 loss to Northwestern
. All time Navy
is 36-20 on
and Buddy Green must be cautiously enthusiastic about
the outcome of the Pitt game. The Midshipmen did win and in exciting
fashion, but the overall performance still needs improvement. The
pluses are obvious, the result, the key defensive stop at the end of the
game, and the offensive production. But this coaching staff wont let the
negatives; the defensive production (or lack there of), penalties at inopportune
times, and poor special teams execution, be overshadowed by the
victory. The win was Navy's first overtime victory in school
Jim Grobe led Wake Forest to the ACC Championship and a BCS Bowl
birth in 2006. The Demon Deacons finished 11-3 and Grobe was the
unanimous choice as the ACC Coach of the Year. He also earned coach of the
year honors from the American Football Coaches Association, the Bobby Dodd
Foundation, the Associated Press, The Sporting News and CBS
Sportsline.com. Wake Forest improved its record from 4-7 in 2005 to 11-3
in 2006. The seven game difference was the largest turnaround in the
nation. The 2006 ACC Championship was the first for Wake in 36
years. Grobe wasan assistant at Air Force
from 1984 to 1994.
Navy Offense vs. Wake Forest Defense
If last Wednesday night is any indication of the maturation of Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada
then he is growing into a true dual threat quarterback. The
first touchdown pass to Reggie Campbell
was perfect. Campbell was either
going to catch the pass or it would have sailed out of the end zone. This
was a drastic improvement from the Rutgers
game. Kaipo completed 9 of 12
passes for 166 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. He also
rushed for 122 yards and a touchdown on a career-high 25 carries.
Both fullbacks and three slot backs played well against Pitt. Eric Kettani
and Adam Ballard
combined for 131 yards and a touchdown on 29
carries. Ballard fumbled toward the end of the third quarter and did not
have another carry. Reggie Campbell only touched the ball 6 times on
offense but recorded 3 touchdowns. Zerbin Singleton
had 5 carries for 39
yards and caught 2 passes for 20 yards while Shun White
had 6 carries for 23
yards with a touchdown.
The wide receivers are starting to get in on the action. Tyree Barnes
led the team with 3 receptions for 58 yards against Pitt. O.J. Washington
caught a 49-yard pass on Navy's first offensive play. This offensive line
is starting to gel. Kaipo was sacked twice, but the Midshipmen regained
the top spot in rushing, now averaging 345.5 yards per game.
The Wake Forest defense is aggressive and fast. They are currently
ranked 46th overall and 22nd against the run. The line is led by senior
defensive end Jeremy Thompson
. Thompson has 6 sacks on the
season. Fellow end Zach Stukes
leads the ACC with three fumble
recoveries. Redshirt sophomores Boo Robinson
and John Russell
interior of the line. Robinson is a mountain of a young man (6' 2'', 326
lb). He has 3 tackles for loss on the season. Navy needs to contain
Robinson so they can establish the fullback as part of the triple option.
is Demon Deacons active leader in career tackles and tackles
for loss with 172 and 21.5 respectively. He has started 30 consecutive
games and is currently second on team in tackles with 44. Middle
linebacker Stanley Arnoux
had his best game against Maryland
, finishing with 9
tackles and 3 tackles for loss. Chantz McClinic
and Hunter Haynes
manned the other linebacker spot. McClinic has started four games with Haynes
starting the other two. McClinic has 19 tackles on the season while Haynes
has 25 tackles and is second on the team with two sacks.
Though they rank 91st in the nation, the Wake Forest pass defense is
dangerous. Wake Forest has intercepted a pass in 17 of the last 18
games. Cornerback Alphonso Smith
is the NCAA's active career leader in
interceptions returns for touchdowns with four, including three this year.
He is also third on the team in tackles with 26. Free Safety Chip Vaughn
leads the Deacons in tackles this year with 49. That is good enough to
rank 11th in the ACC. Vaughn also has an interception and a fumble
recovery. Fellow safety Kevin Patterson
has 25 tackles and an interception
on the year. Two other corners have starts this season. Brandon Ghee
has started the last four games while Kerry Major
started the first two.
Wake Forest Offense vs. Navy Defense
Quarterback Riley Skinner
was voted the ACC's Rookie of the Year for his
performance last season. He led the ACC in passing efficiency, completion
percentage and interception rate. Thus far this season Skinner is picking
up where he left off. He has completed 70.5% of his passes for 891 yards
with 4 touchdowns. The only part of Skinner's game that is going through a
sophomore slump is his interception rate. All of last year he only threw
7, while he already has 9 this season. These numbers are only through 4
games as Skinner missed two games with a separated shoulder.
Wake Forest seems to have found not only their running back of the future
but also their running back of the present. Redshirt freshman Josh Adams
leads the team with 364 yards on 71 carries. He is currently the ACC
Rookie of the Week. Against Florida State
Adams finished with 140 yards on
18 carries. In the second quarter he shredded the Seminole defense on an
83-yard touchdown run. Senior Micah Andrews
started the first four games
this season. He has 1,364 yards for his career, 223 this season.
The Demon Deacons most versatile player is wide receiver/running
back/return specialist Kenny Moore
. The senior leads the team in receiving
with 41 catches for 434 yards and 2 touchdowns and is second on the team in
rushing with 27 carries for 229 yards and 3 touchdowns. Moore was moved to
running back last season last season in order to keep the redshrit on
Adams. He had a career day running the ball against Maryland in
2006. Moore finished that day with 27 carries and 165 yards. This
season he recorded 15 receptions against Boston College
, tying a school
record. Tight end John Tereshinski
is second on the team with 19
receptions. Zac Selmon
is listed as the started. At 6' 5'' Selmon
may present a match up problem for the Midshipmen.
For the most part Wake Forest has started the same offensive line the
entire season. Louis Frazier
, Matthew Brim
and Steve Justice have started
every game this season at left tackle, left guard and center respectively.
On the right side Chris DeGeare
and Joe Birdsong have started 5 of the 6 games
this season. Athlon named this unit the best in the ACC before the
The three things that continue to plague the Navy defense; missed tackles,
missed tackles and missed tackles. As the young unit continues to gel the
number of missed assignments and efforts (plays with lack of full effort) are
dropping. But the fundamental skill of tackling is missing. Against
Pitt there were several occasions where a Panther player was surrounded by
several Navy defenders and still was not brought down. Tackling must
improve in order for the Midshipmen to enjoy a successful second half of the
The emergence of Ram Vela
at outside linebacker has allowed Matt Nechak to
move to defensive end. Nechak had struggled in space and his size (6' 4'',
244 lb) lends itself to more of a down lineman in the Navy system. This
additional depth will only help the end rotation of Chris Kuhar-Pitters
, Michael Walsh
, Jordan Stephens
and Kyle Bookhout
. At nose guard Nate Frazier
starting to come into his own. He has 21 tackles for the year, including
two tackles for loss and one sack. Fellow sophomore Andy Lark
improving. He recorded his first tackle for loss against Pittsburgh
Seniors Matt Wimsatt
and Irv Spencer are not only the leaders of the
linebacking corps, but also the leaders of the defense. They rank first
and second respectively in tackles. Ram Vela continues to impress in his
new role. He recorded a career high nine tackles against Pitt. Tony Haberer
seems to have locked down the other starting spot.
Cornerback Rashawn King
was the defensive star of the night against
Pitt. Not only did he break-up the Panthers final pass attempt ending the
game, he also recorded nine tackles and an interception. Freshman free
safety Wyatt Middleton
had both a team and career high 12 tackles verses
Pitt. With Ketric Buffin
out due to a broken arm, either Jesse Iwuji
will need to step up at rover. Snyder recorded the first four
tackles of his career against Pitt and forced a fumble. Iwuji has had an
up and down season thus far, starting three games, two at rover and one at free
safety. Blake Carter
continues to improve at the other corner spot.
Navy Special Teams vs. Wake Forest Special Teams
Two special teams miscues almost cost Navy a victory in Pittsburgh.
First punter Greg Veteto
opted to run on a rugby style punt attempt early in the
fourth quarter. It wasn't the fake that I minded but it was the
execution. Veteto had a seem between the middle and the outside but chose
to cut back inside toward All Big East linebacker Scott McKillop
other was in the first overtime when an offside penalty allowed Pitt to continue
their dive for a touchdown instead of settling for a field goal.
The aforementioned Veteto was punting rugby style because Pitt got a piece
of his first punt. The punt did still cover 31 yards.
was 2 of 4 on field goals against Pitt. He came up short
on a 48-yard attempt that would have ended the game in regulation but more
importantly he did connect from 29 yards on what proved to be the game winner in
the second overtime. Reggie Campbell almost broke the kick return we have
been waiting for. Unfortunately the Pitt kicker got in his way and he had
to settle for a 60-yard return.
Junior kicker Sam Swank
is currently third all-time in scoring at Wake
Forest. He is a perfect 83 of 83 on extra point attempts. This
season he is 5 of 5 on field goals with a long of 48 yards. Swank
also handles the punting duties for the Demon Deacons. Of his 39 attempts,
14 have resulted in the opponents starting inside their 20-yard line.
Swank is currently the ACC Special Teams Player of the Week.
and Kenny Moore share the kick off return duties while Moore
is the primary punt returner. Moore returned a punt 55 yards for
a touchdown against Army
. He currently averages 10.3 yards per punt
return. Marion is averaging 21.6 yards per kick off return.