Navy gives Chaump contract extension

November 27, 1993|By From Staff Reports

Navy has extended the contract of football coach George Chaump, who heads into next week's game against Army with an 11-32 record in four years at the academy.

Chaump is in the final year of a four-year contract. Neither Chaump nor athletic director Jack Lengyel revealed terms of the extension or the options that it includes. Lengyel said he recommended the extension to the academy's athletic board of control, and that it was approved yesterday by Naval Academy Superintendent Rear Admiral Thomas C. Lynch.

"I'm happy I get an opportunity to finish a job I've put so much into," Chaump said last night. "It's taken longer than I wanted it to, but when a new coach comes in at one of the service academies, there are no quick fixes. You've got to work by the guidelines."

Chaump, who had winning records in four-year stints at Indiana (Pa.) and Marshall before taking the Navy job, was 5-6 in his first season with the Midshipmen. Navy went 1-10 the next two seasons, but is 4-6 this year going into the season finale against Army at the Meadowlands.

"There was speculation in the paper that I had to beat Army to keep my job, but no one here had ever said anything about that," Chaump said. "There have been a lot of rumors, and this puts an end to that.

"It helps not only going into the Army game, but with recruiting as well," Chaump said. "I think the program's stable. I'm happy with where we've come in four years. I like the way our recruiting has been going."

Chaump, 57, was asked how long it could be expected to take a coach to turn around the Navy football program. "If people say it takes four years at a 'normal' school, well, it takes longer here," he said. "I like what Howard Schnellenberger said when he took the Louisville job. . . . He said it's going to take 15 years.

"If that's the case, I'd like to think it will take the Naval Academy 10 years," Chaump said with a laugh.

One of the highlights of Chaump's tenure at Navy came two years ago, when the Midshipmen,then 0-10, beat Army, 24-3. This year the Midshipmen were impressive against Notre Dame, leading the Irish at halftime, but that was followed by embarrassing losses to Vanderbilt (41-7) and Southern Methodist (42-13).

NOTES: President Bill Clinton notified Navy officials he intends to attend the game with Army. If so, he will be the first president to witness the Army-Navy game since Gerald Ford in 1974. Former Commanders-in-Chief showed a reluctance to witness the game after a fan ran untouched through security personnel at halftime of the 1962 game in Philadelphia to shake hands with then-President John F. Kennedy. . . . Army will have had three weeks to prepare for Navy. The Cadets' last outing was a 35-12 win over Lafayette on Nov. 13. The schedule break has allowed principal running threat Akili King (843 yards) to nurse his hamstring pull. Army coach Bob Sutton still lists King as questionable.

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