Finding positives in a 50-10 loss is tough. But Navy came away with a few after its opening-game defeat by Notre Dame in Dublin, Ireland.
Under a heavy rush, quarterback Trey Miller was resourceful and accurate, completing 14 of 19 passes for 192 yards, and the slotbacks ran well, carrying eight times for 67 yards.
"I thought our kids battled hard," coach Ken Niumatalolo said. "You gotta try to look for the positives and move on. Whether you win or lose, it's the same way."
After beating Notre Dame three times in four years, Navy's second straight lopsided defeat could be viewed as an indictment of the Midshipmen. Instead, the more appropriate thing to take away might be that Notre Dame is recruiting a better brand of player under Brian Kelly, now in his third year.
The Irish always have been able to attract prospects with lots of stars next to their names. It now appears they are getting ones with speed to match their always formidable size.
"That's probably the best Notre Dame team I've seen in my 15 years here," Niumatalolo said. "Their front four and [inside linebacker] Manti [Te'o], I've never seen a group like that."
The most impressive display of speed was turned in by 6-foot-6, 303-pound defensive end Stephon Tuitt, who scooped up a fumble and ran 77 yards, losing little ground on his jaunt to Miller or Navy slotback Darius Staten.
- Kevin Dunleavy