How BYU quickly disposed of Navy for a 55-3 victory
BYU scored early and often against Navy and never looked back.
The Cougars defeated the Midshipmen 55-3 at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Maryland on Monday night. It was Navy's worst loss of the Ken Niumatalolo era and the worst home loss in program history, according to ESPN.
Two rushing touchdowns less than eight minutes in gave BYU a 14-0 lead. It would only grow from there.
A 17-point second quarter effectively put the game out of reach. The Cougars finished the first half with 304 yards of total offense — 193 of them, and three touchdowns, coming on the ground. Navy had just 48 yards at the break and trailed 31-0 after the first 30 minutes of play.
BYU also scored 17 points in the third quarter before Navy finally got on the board. A Bijan Nichols 48-yard field goal ensured that the Midshipmen wouldn't be shut out at home.
BYU tailbacks Tyler Allgeier (14 carries, 132 yards) and Lopini Katoa (10 carries, 80 yards) each ran for two touchdowns, while quarterback Zach Wilson threw for 232 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.
The Cougars had seven touchdowns on the night. Navy managed just seven first downs.
BYU 55, Navy 3 | FINAL
The Cougars led wire-to-wire, and had the game put away by halftime with a 31-0 lead. Navy avoided getting shut out thanks to a field goal late in the third quarter. But the Midshipmen had no answer for BYU's offense on Monday night. Here are the final statistics for each team.
BYU 48 | Navy 3 END 3Q
BYU 38, Army 0 | 13:05 3Q
Made it look too easy 😅 pic.twitter.com/E8enK8xC1Z— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) September 8, 2020
BYU 31, Navy 0 | HALF
The Cougars found the end zone once again eight seconds before halftime. Lopini Katoa took a handoff up the middle, stayed on his feet and broke the plane at the goal line for a touchdown. It was Katoa's second rushing touchdown of the game, and his third overall score of the night.
BYU sophomore Tyler Allgeier (110 yards, TD) is averaging 11 yards a carry and the Cougars' offense is outgaining Navy 304-48 offensive yards through the first 30 minutes.
Here are each team's statistics as BYU holds a commanding 31-0 lead over Navy at halftime. BYU will receive the ball to begin the second half.
BYU 24, Navy 0 | 5:00 2Q
BYU 21, Navy 0 | 13:31 2Q
BYU 14, Navy 0 | END 1Q
BYU 14, Navy 0 | 7:16 1Q
BYU 7, Navy 0 | 10:07 1Q
COUGARS STRIKE FIRST ⚡️ pic.twitter.com/njFw0wDfsu— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) September 8, 2020
BYU 0, Navy 0 | 15:00 1Q
The final game of Week 1 is underway in Annapolis, Maryland, as Navy plays host to BYU.
Navy head coach Ken Niumatalolo told ESPN's Allison Williams before the game that tonight will be the first live action his players have seen all year. No tackling has been allowed during practice. Williams also reported that Navy conducted testing twice per week.
What to know about BYU vs. Navy before kickoff
BYU and Navy close out Week 1 of the 2020 college football season at 8 p.m. ET tonight on ESPN. Here's what you need to know before kickoff:
- This will be the third meeting all time between these two programs, and the first since 1989 when BYU won 31-10. The series is tied 1-1.
- No fans will be allowed inside Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in accordance with a Secretary's Order from the Maryland Department of Health.
- Navy is coming off an 11-2 season in 2019 and received six votes in this year's preseason AP poll. BYU went 7-6 last year.
- The Midshipmen led all FBS schools in rushing yards per game in 2019 with an average of 360.5.
- They'll be without their leading rusher Malcolm Perry, who ran for 2,017 yards last season. The quarterback was taken in the seventh round of the 2020 NFL draft by the Miami Dolphins.
- However, fullbacks Jamale Carothers and Nelson Smith are returning and combined for 1,205 yards and 21 touchdowns in 2019.
- The Cougars will counter with junior quarterback Zach Wilson, who started nine games last season while throwing for 2,382 yards and 11 touchdowns with a 62.4 completion percentage.
- With tight end Matt Bushman suffering a season ending injury, Wilson will have to look elsewhere in a receiving core that's now lost its top four yardage leaders from 2019.
- Junior Gunner Romney could fill that void, as the receiver finished with 31 receptions for 377 yards and two touchdowns last year.
Here's a preview of Navy
Navy (11-2 in 2019)
Coach: Ken Niumatalolo (98-60, 13th season)
2020 fall schedule: BYU (Sept. 7); at Tulane (Sept. 19); Temple (Sept. 26); at Air Force (Oct. 3); at East Carolina (Oct. 17); Houston (Oct. 24); at SMU (Oct. 31); Tulsa (Nov. 7); Memphis (Nov. 14); at South Florida (Nov. 21); vs. Army in Philadelphia (Dec. 12)
Navy had a major bounce back in 2019, winning 11 games after going 3-10 in 2018. But one of the driving forces of the turnaround, quarterback Malcolm Perry, is gone with Dalen Morris or Perry Olsen set to step in and lead Navy's triple-option system.
Regardless of which signal-caller takes the field Monday night, be prepared for the Midshipmen to run the ball early and often while attempting to control the clock. What made the Midshipmen successful at this last year was that they were a difficult team to get off of the field. Navy ranked eighth in time of possession and top 5 in red zone offense and fourth down conversion rate.
Slowing them down won't be that much easier as fullbacks Nelson Smith and Jamale Carothers return to lead a ground game that finished first in 2019 among all FBS teams with 360.5 rushing yards per game. The duo combined for more than 1,300 yards and 21 touchdowns a year ago.
Preseason All-American linebacker Diego Fagot will anchor the defense for one of college football's most well-disciplined teams. Fagot recorded 100 tackles, 12 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks for a Midshipmen team that was flagged the fourth-fewest times last season.
Here's a preview of BYU
BYU (7-6 in 2019)
Coach: Kalani Sitake (27-25, fifth season)
2020 fall schedule: at Navy (Sept. 7); at Army (Sept. 19); Troy (Sept. 26); UTSA (Oct. 10); at Houston (Oct. 16); Texas State (Oct. 24); Western Kentucky (Oct. 31); North Alabama (Nov. 21)
BYU opens its season Monday on the road after posting back to back 7-6 seasons. This will be one of three times the Cougars are scheduled to play away from Provo in 2020 as part of an eight-game schedule. After a three-man quarterback competition in the offseason, Zach Wilson will start the year atop the depth chart after starting nine games a year ago. Wilson threw for over 2,300 yards and 11 touchdowns while battling an injury to his throwing hand.
It'll be up to an offensive line that boasts 115 combined starts to keep the pocket clean for Wilson and create running room for Lopini Katoa and Sione Finau. BYU didn't have a true starter last season, but Katoa and Finau both figure to contribute to the ground game in different ways. Finau had a team-best 359 yards on 59 carries while Katoa led the Cougars in carries (85) and rushing touchdowns (4).
Tight end Matt Bushman is the only one of BYU's top four receiving yardage leaders to return, which might lead to an increase in touches for the 6-foot-5 senior. Junior wideout Gunner Romney could be due for a bigger role after making 13 appearances with only one start.
The Cougars are an experienced group defensively, returning six players who made at least seven starts last season. Look to linebackers Kavika Fanua, Isaiah Kaufusi and Payton Wilgar anchor the unit.
📺 How to watch BYU vs. Navy
Week 1 of the 2020 college football season concludes with BYU and Navy face off under the lights in Annapolis, Maryland, on Monday, Sept. 7. This will be the teams' third meeting ever and first since 1989. There will be no fans at the game in accordance with a Secretary's Order from the Maryland Department of Health.
Here's to watch the game:
Time: 8 p.m. ET
Date: Monday, Sept. 7
Place: Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Md.
How BYU put together its 2020 football schedule
BYU football has played in 13 games every year since the 2005 season. But 2020 is unlike any other season. The Cougars are a FBS Independent and not having a conference affiliation limited their pool of potential opponents. Still, BYU will play an eight-game schedule with FBS and FCS opponents across five different conferences. Here are the Cougars' 2020 opponents:
- at Navy — Sept. 7
- at Army — Sept. 19
- Troy — Sept. 26
- UTSA — Oct. 10
- at Houston — Oct. 16
- Texas State — Oct. 24
- Western Kentucky — Oct. 31
- North Alabama (FCS) — Nov. 21
Due to scheduling changes and conference postponements stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, BYU lost 10 of its original 12 opponents — Utah, Michigan State, Arizona State, Minnesota, Utah State, Missouri, Northern Illinois, Boise State, San Diego State and Stanford.
College football on Labor Day since 2015
BYU and Navy meet Monday night for just the third time ever and haven't played one another since 1989. In recent years, the evening game on Labor Day has developed a reputation for producing must-watch college football games. Since 2015, there have been two contests between AP top 25 opponents, a road test for a No. 1 team and an overtime classic. Here is each Labor Day evening game over the past five years:
- 2019: No. 9 Notre Dame 35, Louisville 17
- 2018: No. 20 Virginia Tech 24, No. 19 Florida State 3
- 2017: No. 25 Tennessee 42, Georgia Tech 41 (OT)
- 2016: No. 4 Florida State 45, No. 11 Ole Miss 34
- 2015: No. 1 Ohio State 42, Virginia Tech 24
Here are the top 25 teams in FBS football
The Associated Press released its preseason top 25 on August 24. While 54 FBS teams will not play football this fall, all 130 member schools were eligible for the poll regardless of whether they would play or not. Only teams scheduled to play games will be ranked moving ahead.
There are no ranked teams playing in Week 1 of the 2020 college football season, though Memphis, Navy and SMU all received votes.
|2||Ohio State* (21)||1,504||13-1|
Others receiving votes: Memphis 86, Virginia Tech 85, Boise State 68, Arizona State 66, Miami (FL) 42, Louisville 32, Appalachian State 26, Washington 21, Kentucky 20, Indiana 19, Baylor 15, California 11, TCU 9, Virginia 7, Navy 6, Florida State 6, SMU 3, Mississippi State 3, Air Force 3, Northwestern 1, UAB 1
* Indicates team canceled their games for the season
How the 2020 FBS football season is different than any other
The 2020 FBS season will be played without 54 member schools, including two 2019 New Year's Six bowl game winners (Penn State, Oregon) and a College Football Playoff participant in Ohio State. While the CFP is still scheduled to be played, this won't be an ordinary fall. Here's how each conference's plans changed due to COVID-19:
- ACC: 11-game football schedule (10 conference, one non-conference)
- Begins the week of Sept. 7-12 | Full week-by-week schedule
- American: 12-game football schedule (eight conference, up to four non-conference).
- Conference games set to begin Sept. 19
- Big 12: 10-game football schedule (nine conference, one non-conference), with conference games starting Sept. 26.
- All non-conference games must be completed before Sept. 26.
- Conference-USA: 7-game conference football schedule beginning Sept. 19. No team is scheduled for more than three non-conference games.
- SEC: 10-game football schedule (10 conference, zero non-conference)
- Begins Sept. 26 | Full week-by-week schedule
- Sun Belt: 12-game football schedule (eight conference, up to four non-conference).
These four FBS conferences postponed football:
- Big Ten: The Big Ten will not play football this fall, as the conference postponed all fall sports. The Big Ten is looking into playing fall sports in the spring.
- Pac-12: The conference has postponed the fall football season (and all fall sports through the end of the calendar year). It is considering whether fall sports can be played after Jan. 1, 2021.
- MAC: The MAC has postponed all fall sports, including football. It is looking into potentially playing this spring.
- Mountain West: The Mountain West has postponed all fall sports. The conference will explore the feasibility of rescheduling fall sports for the spring.