Mids' exam week sinks possibility of 11th game

Weatherbie says Madden is trying to do too much

Navy notebook

October 17, 2001|By Kent Baker | By Kent Baker,SUN STAFF

The Naval Academy has decided not to play an 11th football game this season after its Sept. 15 visit to Northwestern was canceled in the wake of the terrorist attacks.

"We had people who wanted to play, both at home and away," said athletic director Chet Gladchuk. "But in the final analysis, scheduling a contest on Nov. 3 at the end of a critical exam week for the midshipmen was not appropriate."

Academic considerations were the main reason for the decision. Academy students are scheduled to take critical 12-week examinations the week of the proposed game.

"We are not interested in playing an extra football game Nov. 3," said academy superintendent Vice Adm. John Ryan. "We have made this decision in light of the mission of the Naval Academy.

"The open date was scheduled so that our scholar-athletes could take full advantage of the academy's educational opportunities. That is still our goal."

The last 10-game season for Navy was in 1969.

Madden feels pressure Navy coach Charlie Weatherbie said quarterback Brian Madden is pressing with the team still winless midway through the season.

"I think he's definitely trying to take the weight of the team on his shoulders," said Weatherbie. "He has to continue to use the people around him and realize that they can make big plays, too.

"You have to remember that Brian Madden has only started eight games. He is by no means a seasoned senior football player. He is a difference maker who makes everybody play better, but he's trying to do too much."

Despite missing the first two games because of a suspension, Madden has carried the ball 66 more times than the runner-up rusher.

Rutgers struggling Another big opportunity to break through comes Saturday, when Navy visits a Rutgers team that has lost five straight, including to the fledgling Connecticut program.

Last weekend, the Scarlet Knights fell, 30-5, to a Temple team that beat Navy in August, 45-26.

"We're a young, young program and we make some silly mistakes, young-guy mistakes," said first-year coach Greg Schiano. "We get frustrated, but we have to make sure we keep sight of what the big picture is."

Rutgers starts a freshman quarterback, Ryan Cubit, and has 20 freshmen or sophomores on the two-deep chart. In six games, the team has been guilty of 25 turnovers.

Miscellaneous Saturday's game will be televised by ESPN Regional (Comcast CN8 locally) at 3:30 p.m. It is also on numerous outlets in the Northeast. ... Marlon Terrell is expected to start for Navy at fullback this week with Bryce McDonald and Raheem Lambert nursing injuries. ... Weatherbie said the Rutgers secondary (DeWayne Thompson, Shawn Seabrooks, Nate Colon and Tony Berry) "is as fast as any we've played. They can fly."

Next for Navy

Opponent: Rutgers (1-5)

Site: Rutgers Stadium, Piscataway, N.J.

When: Saturday, 3:30 p.m.

TV/Radio: Comcast CN8/WNAV (1430 AM), WJFK (1300 AM), WMAL (630 M)

Line: Rutgers by 1 1/2

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