Nov. 8, 2003
- Notre Dame has extended its NCAA-record winning streak against Navy to 40 consecutive games (1964-present).
- The Irish improve to 67-9-1 (.877) all-time against the Midshipmen, including a 25-3 (.893) series record at Notre Dame Stadium.
- Notre Dame moves its career record against the service academies to 124-22-5 (.838), including a 42-7 (.857) record at home and a 31-1 (.969) mark since 1986. It also is the 10th consecutive win for the Irish over a service academy, dating back to a 20-17 overtime loss to Air Force in 1996.
- Today’s win marks the second time this season the Irish have won on a last-second field goal, and ironically, both kicks came from 40 yards out (Nicholas Setta had one vs. Washington State in the opener). The last time Notre Dame won on the final play of the game twice in one season was 2000, when Setta kicked a 38-yard field goal as time expired to beat Purdue, and Joey Getherall scored on a nine-yard run in overtime to defeat Air Force.
- Notre Dame now is 9-3 (.750) in the Tyrone Willingham era in games decided by eight points or less. The Irish are 3-2 in such games this season, defeating Washington State (29-26 in OT), Pittsburgh (20-14) and Navy (27-24), while losing to Michigan State (22-16) and Boston College (27-25).
- Notre Dame got on the scoreboard first when senior RB Julius Jones raced 48 yards for a touchdown with five minutes left in the first quarter. It marked the third time this season that the Irish scored first in a game – they also turned the trick at Pittsburgh (win) and Boston College (loss).
- The Irish led 14-10 at halftime this afternoon, the second time this season Notre Dame was in front at the intermission. The Irish were leading Pittsburgh by a 17-14 score at halftime before defeating the Panthers, 20-14.
- Notre Dame piled up 417 yards of total offense, its highest output since Nov. 23, 2002, when the Irish had 478 yards of offense vs. Rutgers.
- Notre Dame held Navy to an opponent season-low 46 yards passing this afternoon. It’s the fewest passing yards allowed by the Irish since Oct. 24, 1998, when they gave up 12 yards through the air vs. Army in a 20-17 win at Notre Dame Stadium.
- Notre Dame recorded a season-high 24 first downs today, the most the Irish have had in a single game since Oct. 14, 2000, when they collected 25 first downs vs. Navy.
- Notre Dame did not commit a turnover today, the first time that has happened since Oct. 26, 2002 at Florida State.
- With 221 yards on 33 carries this afternoon, senior RB Julius Jones has moved into fifth place on Notre Dame’s career rushing list with 2,585 yards. He passed Phil Carter, who had 2,409 yards rushing from 1979-82.
- Jones is the fourth player in school history to rush for 200 yards in a game twice in one season, having also topped the mark with a school-record 262 yards at Pittsburgh. The others to have multiple 200-yard games in a season are Vagas Ferguson (1978 vs. Georgia Tech and Navy), Jim Stone (1980 vs. Miami and Navy) and Reggie Brooks (1992 vs. USC and Purdue).
- Jones’ 221-yard effort is the sixth-highest single-game rushing total in school history. In addition, his 33 carries are a career high, topping his previous best of 27 carries vs. Air Force in 2000.
- Jones also is the first Irish player to top the 100-yard mark four times against one opponent since Autry Denson did it vs. Navy from 1995-98 (16-115 in 1995, 16-123 in 1996, 19-125 in 1997 and 25-107 in 1998). Here is Jones’ career breakdown vs. Navy: 19-146 in 1999; 18-105, TD in 2000; 24-117, TD in 2001; 33-221, 2 TD in 2003. That works out to an average of 147.3 yards per game and 6.3 yards per carry.
- Junior P D.J. Fitzpatrick registered a career-long 50-yard punt in the first quarter.
- Freshman QB Brady Quinn has six touchdown passes this season, the second-most by a true freshman Irish QB since 1951. Matt LoVecchio tossed 11 TD passes in 2000.
- Junior DE Justin Tuck collected a career-high 14 tackles today. His previous best was 10 stops, which he achieved at Pittsburgh earlier this season.
- For the second consecutive season, and just the third time in the 115-year history of Notre Dame football, the Irish are selecting captains on a game-by-game basis. Today’s Irish captains were: DT Darrell Campbell, NG Cedric Hilliard, RB Julius Jones and OT Jim Molinaro. Molinaro is a team captain for the sixth time this season (and sixth time in his career), while Campbell is a three-time captain this season (and has served in that role five times in his career). Both Hilliard and Jones are serving as captains for the second time this season – Hilliard has done so four times in his career, while Jones is a two-time career captain.
- Navy won the toss and deferred its choice to the second half. Notre Dame elected to receive, while the Midshipmen chose to defend the North goal.
- Today’s game marks the 172nd consecutive sellout at Notre Dame Stadium (the first 130 at the old 59,075 capacity). The Navy game also represents the 220th home sellout in the last 221 games (dating back to 1964), the 159th sellout in the last 182 games and the 23rd consecutive sellout involving Notre Dame. That stretch includes the first 10 games of 1998, the first 11 in ’99, the first five in ’00, the first nine in ’01, all 13 in ’02 and the first nine in ’03.
- Counting postseason play, Notre Dame has now had its last 133 games televised on one of four networks (NBC, ABC, CBS, ESPN), a stretch going back more than 10 full seasons (1993-2002). The last time the Irish didn’t appear on one of those four networks was on Oct. 31, 1992, when they defeated Navy, 38-7, at Giants Stadium. That game was only shown locally in South Bend on WNDU-TV.
— ND —