Mids Head to Northern Illinois for Tuesday Night Battle on ESPN2
Junior linebacker Ross Pospisil turned in a career-high 20 tackles in last year's win over Northern Illinois.
Nov. 19, 2008
Game 11: Navy (6-4) vs. Northern Illinois (6-5)
Tuesday, Nov. 25 • 7:00 p.m. Eastern / 6:00 p.m. Central • DeKalb, Ill. • Huskie Stadium (24,000) • ESPN2
• ESPN2 — Eric Collins (play-by-play), Shaun King (analyst)
Radio / Internet:
• Navy Radio Network — Bob Socci (play-by-play), Omar Nelson (analyst), Pete Medhurst (sideline)
• Sirius Radio — Channel to be announced
• Gametracker on NavySports.com
Navy-Northern Illinois Game Data
• Navy (6-4) will have more than a week to prepare for its road contest against Northern Illinois (6-5) slated for Tuesday, Nov. 25 at Huskie Stadium in DeKalb, Ill.
• The Navy-Northern Illinois contest will be televised nationally by ESPN2 with Eric Collins (play-by-play) and Shaun King (color) calling the action from Huskie Stadium (24,000) beginning at 7:00 p.m. Eastern / 6:00 p.m. Central.
• The Navy Football Radio Network will provide more than six hours of coverage starting at 5:00 p.m. with its pregame show on 1430 WNAV (Annapolis) hosted by Pete Medhurst and Joe Miller.
• The Navy Football Pregame Show will get underway at 6:00 p.m. with Bob Socci, Omar Nelson and Pete Medhurst setting the scene from DeKalb, followed by game action beginning at 7:00 p.m. Sirius Satellite Radio will carry the Navy broadcast, as well on a channel to be announced.
The Navy Radio Network includes of the following ...
• WNAV 1430 AM (Annapolis) | WBAL 1090 AM (Baltimore)
• WFED 1050 AM, 1500 AM, 820 AM (Washington DC)
• WTRI 1520 AM (Frederick)
• WXTG 102.1 FM (Va. Beach) | 1490 AM (Hampton Roads)
• Get the insider news by tuning in to the Navy Football Pregame Show with Bob Socci, Omar Nelson and Pete Medhurst. The pregame show includes feature news on “This Date in Navy History” presented by Navy Federal Credit Union, “The Coaches Corner” presented by General Dynamics, “Keys to the Game” presented by Toyota, “Today in College Football” presented by BAE Systems, as well as interviews with head coach Ken Niumatalolo and select players.
• New to this year’s radio line-up is a 60-minute postgame show on 1430 WNAV. This week’s show will feature Medhurst live from Huskie Stadium and Joe Miller from the WNAV studios in Annapolis recapping the day’s events.
Scouting Northern Illinois
• The 6-5 Huskies play host to the Midshipmen after snapping its two-game losing skid on Tuesday with a 42-14 rout over Kent State on the road.
• Northern Illinois has played a challenging schedule which has seen the Huskies drop contests against Minnesota (31-27), Western Michigan (29-26), Tennesee (13-9), Ball State (45-14) and Central Michigan (33-30 OT).
• Meanwhile, NIU has defeated Indiana State (48-3), Eastern Michigan (37-0), Miami (Ohio) (17-13), Toledo (38-7), Bowling Green, 16-13, and Kent State (42-14).
• The Huskies are ranked 43rd in the country in rushing offense (171.4 yards per game), 101st in passing (165.5 ypg), 83rd in total offense (336.9 ypg) and 59th in scoring offense (26.2 points per game).
• Defensively, the Huskies rank 48th in rushing defense (130.5 ypg), 19th in passing defense (179.2 ypg), 26th in total defense (309.7 ypg) and 20th in scoring defense (18.7 ppg).
Navy Vs. the Mid-American Conference
• The Midshipmen are 17-13 (.567) all-time against current members of the Mid-American Conference.
• Northern Illinois is the third MAC opponent Navy will face this year. Undefeated and nationally-ranked Ball State (10-0) dropped the Mids, 35-23, in the second week of the season in Muncie, Ind., while the Mids earned a spectacular come-from-behind win over Temple in overtime (33-27) at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
• Last November, Navy and Northern Illinois sparred for the first time on the gridiron with the Mids outlasting the Huskies in Annapolis, 35-24.
The Last Time ...
Navy 35, Northern Illinois 24 Nov. 17, 2007 | Annapolis, Md.
• Senior slot back Zerbin Singleton (Decatur, Ga.) rushed for 101 yards and three touchdowns on just 11 carries, while sophomore linebacker Ross Pospisil (Temple, Texas) recorded a career-high 20 tackles to lead Navy to a 35-24 victory over Northern Illinois in front of 34,517 fans at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium on Senior Day.
• Navy jumped out to a 21-7 lead thanks to touchdown runs of one and 26 yards by Singleton and a 15-yard touchdown run by Shun White (Jr./Memphis, Tenn.). Northern Illinois closed to within 28-24 early in the fourth quarter on a 42-yard field goal by Chric Nendick, but Singleton put the game away with a 12-yard touchdown run.
• Junior quarterback Jarod Bryant (Hoover, Ala.), playing in place of injured starter Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada (Kapolei, Hawai’i), rushed for a career-high 139 yards and one touchdown on 27 carries. Bryant completed three of his six passes for 60 yards.
• Blake Carter (So./Stillwater, Okla.) recorded 10 tackles in support of Pospisil’s 20, while Michael Walsh (Jr./Newtown, Pa.) had nine stops and a sack. Senior outside linebacker Matt Wimsatt (Raleigh, N.C.) added a sack, while senior Greg Thrasher (Carrollton, Texas) had six tackles, a tackle for a loss, a pass break-up and an interception.
Navy Accepts EagleBank Bowl Bid
• Following Navy’s thrilling comeback victory over Temple on Nov. 1, Naval Academy Director of Athletics Chet Gladchuk announced it has formally accepted an invitation to play in the inaugural EagleBank Bowl on Saturday, Dec. 20 at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. against a projected opponent from the Atlantic Coast Conference.
• The game will be televised nationally by ESPN and game time is tentatively set for 11 a.m.
• The bowl bid is a landmark achievement for the football program as it marks the first time in school history that Navy has gone to six-straight bowl games.
• Navy can achieve another first by winning the Commander-In-Chief's Trophy for a school-record sixth-consecutive year on Dec. 6 when the Mids play Army at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.
• Tickets prices range from $45-$110.
• Tickets for the EagleBank Bowl are on sale now at www.navysports.com(.) Tickets can also be purchased on by calling 1-800-US4-NAVY or stopping by the Ricketts Hall Ticket Office.
• Fans are also encouraged to purchase tickets to sponsor a midshipman or enlisted personnel and their families for $35. Donated tickets will be administered through the Naval Academy Athletic Association ticket office.
• "We strongly encourage Navy fans to buy their bowl tickets from the Naval Academy Athletic Association,” said Gladchuk. “Our goal is to bring the majority of the Brigade of Midshipmen and we want more than 30,000 Navy fans in the stands. It is very important for this game and for future bowl considerations for our fans to purchase tickets through the NAAA. "If you can't make it to the game we ask that Navy fans buy tickets for our midshipmen, enlisted personnel and their families which will allow us to create our usual electric Navy atmosphere. Ticket donations for our military and their families through the NAAA ticket office are 100 percent deductible."
• Anthony Travel is the official Naval Academy EagleBank Bowl travel agency. Travel packages include hotel accommodations at the Mayflower Hotel (Navy team hotel) or the JW Marriott for $149, tailgate admissions, a souvenir and much more. Visit AnthonyTravel.com and search Navy Bowl or call (800) 736-6377 to make your reservations.
Six Bowl Appearances in Six Years
• Navy’s bid to the 2008 EagleBank Bowl marks the first time in school history that Navy has earned the right to play in six-straight bowl games.
• The Mids lost to Texas Tech in the 2003 Houston Bowl, 38-14, defeated New Mexico in the 2004 Emerald Bowl, 34-19, crushed Colorado State, 51-30, in the 2005 Poinsettia Bowl, lost a heartbreaking 25-24 decision to Boston College in 2006 in the Meineke Car Care Bowl and lost to Utah, 35-32, in last year’s Poinsettia Bowl.
• Since 2003, Navy owns a 17-5 (.773) record in games following a loss.
• The Mids have lost back-to-back games just five times during that six-year span:
2005 Maryland and Stanford
2006 Rutgers and Notre Dame
2007 Rutgers and Ball St.; Wake Forest and Delaware
2008 Ball State and Duke
• Navy has not lost three-straight games since the 2002 season when the Mids lost 10 in a row.
Tuani Freshman All-America Candidate
• Defensive end Jabaree Tuani (Madison, Tenn.) has emerged as a candidate for Freshman All-American honors over the last several games.
• Tuani, who did not make his first-career start until the fifth game of the season, leads Navy’s defensive line with 37 tackles, has recorded a team-high 8.5 tackles for a loss, has 1.5 sacks, recovered a fumble and forced three fumbles.
• He has played his best games against the Mids’ toughest opponents, recording six tackles, including two tackles for a loss, and a forced fumble against Wake Forest, a career-high 10 tackles and a forced fumble against Air Force and seven stops, including two tackles for a loss, against Notre Dame.
• Tuani also forced a fumble against Pittsburgh.
Defense Among Nation’s Most Improved
• The Navy defense has improved its scoring defense by 10.7 points per game this year, the seventh-best improvement in the country.
• The Mids gave up 36.4 points per game in 2007 and are giving up 25.7 points per game in 2008.
• Navy has come up with 25 turnovers (13 interceptions and 12 fumbles) in its 10 games this season.
• Twenty-one of the Mids’ 25 TOs have been amassed over the last six games after forcing just 16 turnovers all of last year (13 games).
• Navy senior Ketric Buffin picked off Notre Dame quarterback Jimmy Clausen twice to record the program’s 13th interception of ‘08, three more than last year’s total.
• Navy recovered three Notre Dame fumbles, including one off an onside kick that led to a Ricky Dobbs touchdown with 1:21 remaining in the game.
• Forcing 25 turnovers, while turning the ball over 13 times, Navy is tied for eighth in turnover margin at +1.20.
Niumatalolo Makes History
• Since World War II, Navy’s 11 head coaches are a combined 43-78-4 (.360) in their first season.
• Only Wayne Hardin in 1959 (5-4-1) and Gary Tranquill in 1982 (6-5) were able to post a winning record. A win over Northern Illinois would make Niumatalolo the winningest first-year coach at Navy since World War II.
• Directing Navy to an unbelievable come-from-behind win over Temple, Niumatalolo becomes the first head coach in program history to lead the Mids to a bowl game in their first year.