The most important quote from Week One

Navy took a shellacking from BYU yesterday and head coach Ken Niumatalolo pointed a finger at himself for that.

… The Midshipmen held a different kind of preseason camp than BYU, too, something that became a focal point to explain Navy’s lackluster performance. The Mids held limited face-to-face contact during practices to potentially limit COVID-19 spread. In his postgame news conference, Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo blamed himself for his team’s approach during camp, which he said resulted in the dismal showing. Instead of tackling or blocking one another, the Mids tackled and blocked dummies. There were no live scrimmages.

The Navy staff’s pregame concerns materialized quickly. BYU scored on five of its six first-half possessions, mounting what was Navy’s biggest halftime deficit (31–0) since 2002.

“That’s the worst Navy game we’ve ever played. That’s my fault. I chose to block bags and tackle donuts,” said Niumatalolo, who said he will re-evaluate his team’s conservative practicing model with physicians. “You hope it doesn’t turn out that way and we talked in a lot of staff meetings, ‘Are we going to be ready?’ I heard [the staff] and their legitimate concerns. Last time we tackled anybody was the bowl game. Nine months ago.”

Tackling COVID is fine, but coaches get paid for their players to tackle opposing players.  You can bet there will be more than a few discussions this week with medical staff about how far things can go in practice.


Filed under Strategery And Mechanics, The Body Is A Temple

9 responses to “The most important quote from Week One

  1. Biggen

    They looked like the result of a typical Butch Jones scrimmage from years ago when he had his players tackling giant orange dildo looking dummies instead of players and it showed the next game how inept they were.

    I hope this is a lesson to other coaches to stop the insanity of these drastic corona procedures and play some god damn football already.


  2. I saw the same thing in a high school football game. One team looked like they had not tackled in camp. The other team ran all over them.


  3. W Cobb Dawg

    So the Navy was unprepared for the BYU attack?!


  4. godawgs1701

    Watching the game last night, i definitely suspected that Navy hadn’t been doing much real practicing. They just looked like a team that wasn’t prepared and a team that didn’t really remember how to play football. In a situation where you’re trying to get a quarterback ready to play his first real snaps at the position you have to put him through at least some live action. There’s no substitute for the real thing.


    • TEXBaller

      Interesting….as I watched the game last night. First thought was the (athletic) Navy QB Dalen Morris was absolutely terrible. Consistent three & outs will always put your defense in a bad position. Poor execution of the trip option. Selfish keepers. Bad decisions on the option. Just pathetic. Arguably the worst QB I’ll see this year….any division. Niumatalolo should be kicking himself for staying with Morris the entire 1st half (31-0) & not having a reasonable plan B. Defense can’t be blamed for what I saw!


  5. FlyingPeakDawg

    I’ve enjoyed tackling a few doughnuts in my day.


  6. Football is a contact sport … if you aren’t going to practice with full contact, you might as well cancel your season. Especially somewhere like Navy, the teams you play are likely more talented and have better depth than you. Navy wins on offensive scheme, execution on assignments, and sound fundamentals. You can’t develop sound fundamentals without full contact.


  7. Big fan of Navy and Army football, especially under CKN. He’s a great coach for that organization and always has his team prepared….until last night. That was as bad a performance as I’ve ever seen in his years as coach. Not surprised to find out something different went on in preseason. There have been some big losses over the years, but never a game where the players seemed to have no clue on defense, or more surprisingly, offense. I’m curious to see from this point forward, how much can they improve. Is the loss of all the live practice something that can be overcome, or, with the limited time during the season is it too late to get their fundamentals down to become effective. They may go from arguably their best season under CKN to their worst.


  8. benco04

    More so than perhaps any other school (Air Force and Army excepted) the football coach is protecting an investment. In KN’s case, future officers. My guess is he had some rather strict marching orders from the Sup’s office in Annapolis to not have an outbreak. Practice and game prep were the casualties of being concerned with spreading COVID. I bet we see a lot of that this fall.