NCAA Football Report (Week 15)

The NCAA is a league that has been built on the legends and stories of their long history with rivalry games at the centre of this history. Rivalry games are the heart of the NCAA and the connection to a school but one rivalry overruns all. When a school cheer mentions one opposing team you know that the rivalry is a big deal and that is the case for the Army and Naval Academies. The cheers for these schools are simple and to the point “Go Army, Beat Navy” “Go Navy, Beat Army.” These cheers show what both schools see as the most important game every year as they could lose every game all season but if they win against Navy or Army all is forgiven. This is the environment that these men play in as they are expected to beat their rivals every year. There is a lot more to this game as well with two schools that are a lot more than educational institutions. These schools are the producers of the American Armed Forces and because of that everyone that plays on the team will be entering the military after graduation. With these players going to the military and into combat after graduation they have little hope of making the NFL and being paid to play. This fact ensures that none of the players in this game every year are playing for a chance to earn a contract but instead are playing simply because they love the game of football. The game has also taking on a bit more meaning in recent years as both schools do not recruit in the same way as other schools do. Deciding to go to either of these academies is a commitment to fighting in the armed forces and not just to playing football. This means that the recruitment violations that have seemingly never stopped are not a part of either of these schools because they are recruiting for different reasons. The game has become the purest football game in the world with nobody making money for playing and no school under NCAA sanctions. Instead this game is between two schools that are preparing young men for something much bigger than a sport and between young men who are only playing because they love football. This game has meant exactly this for 112 years with the first game between these two teams being played in 1890. It is the epitome of the NCAA history and is now held every year on the last weekend of the regular season with no other games taking the focus away. This year was no different as the Navy Midshipmen looked to extend their winning streak to 10 years in a row over Army. Army was looking to break the streak and become the first Army team to beat Navy in 10 years. Both teams were based on their running game with Navy being ranked #1 in the nation for rushing offence. This was clearly displayed in the 112th meeting as the two teams combined for a total of 9 pass attempts compared to 116 rushing attempts. Navy opened the scoring with two rushing TDs in the first half to go ahead 14-0. Army did not go away though as they broke a big 34 yard run in the 2nd quarter and took the momentum into the end of the half scoring another rushing TD. At halftime the score was 14-14 as the teams would come out of the locker room even as the second game would start. The second half started much like the first with a Navy rushing TD but it was answered by Army to tie the game up at 21. The fourth quarter saw no TDs but Navy added two field goals that could not be matched by Army. Navy took the win making it 10 straight as Army failed to win again. The game marked the final regular season game in the NCAA season as the tradition of the regular season ended. Next week the Bowl season starts and there will be plenty to watch with the many small bowls before the major BCS Bowls.


Final Score:

Navy Midshipmen 27 – 21 Army Black Knights


Heisman Trophy:

Robert Griffin III, QB (Baylor)

So the dark horse of the race got the win as Robert Griffin III was announced as the Heisman Trophy winner for 2011. Griffin hovered around the top three most of the season as one of the best QBs in the nation and the leader of his Baylor Bears. Overall Griffin had better stats than his biggest QB competition in Andrew Luck and seemed to carry the team all season. The win was even more surprising as Baylor did not have the best record at the end of the season going 9-3 and finishing ranked 12th in the BCS poll. This is unusual because the award usually goes to the best player on the best team in the NCAA which meant that Andrew Luck, Stanford was ranked 4th by season end, and Trent Richardson, Alabama was ranked 2nd at the end of the season, were favorites. RG3, as he is known as, became the first ever player from Baylor to win the Heisman and only the third player to win the Heisman and not play in a BCS Bowl. Griffin got the award because of his great athletic ability that allowed him to be the blueprint for a QB. RG3 has the athletic ability to run the ball better than most QBs but he also has the ability to throw the ball and can do both successfully. This is why he won the Heisman and ultimately this could mean big things for his future career as he has now entered the radar of QBs in the NFL draft with some even saying he could be pick above Andrew Luck. RG3 is the 77th player to be given the award and will be a great pick up for anyone in the NFL but more importantly he may become the new blueprint for a QB in the NCAA and in the NFL.


Stats (12 Games):



72.4% cmp

3,998 yds

36 TD


192.3 rtg



161 rsh

644 yds

4.0 avg

9 TD


Runners Up

2. Andrew Luck, QB (Stanford)

3. Trent Richardson, RB (Alabama)

4. Montee Ball, RB (Wisconsin)

5. Tyrann Mathieu, CB (LSU)


Next Week (Bowl Week 1)


New Mexico Bowl:

Wyoming Cowboys vs. Temple Owls (December 17th; 2:00 pm)

– Both teams quietly won 8 games on the year as they have both depended on the run but none more than Temple who ranks 7th in the nation behind Bernard Pierce and with Wyoming having one of the worst run defences it could become a pure running game


Famous Idaho Potato Bowl:

Utah State Aggies vs. Ohio Bobcats (December 17th; 5:30 pm)

– Both teams have a high scoring offence with Utah State winning their last five but all have been close games winning by an average of 18 points as they will try to do better against the under-achieving Ohio Bobcats


R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl:

Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns vs. San Diego State Aztecs (December 17th; 9:00 pm)

– The Ragin’ Cajuns are making their first bowl appearance in 41 years while the Aztecs are making back-to-back bowl appearances for the first time since 1966-67 as they will try to take another win behind their running back Ronnie Hillman who averaged 138 yards a game and was ranked 3rd in the nation

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