I’m sitting at the airport right now. My flight is delayed, so I have some time to kill. I’m at gate 40; at gate 39 is the Delta flight to Salt Lake City, so I’m surrounded by Utah fans. It doesn’t bother me, though. Right now I don’t know if I could be more proud to be a Navy fan.
I was joking around with some friends this week about Zerbin Singleton’s story. His mother was shot by a bounty hunter, he was shipped across the continent to live with relatives, was hit by a drunk driver, and his father committed suicide. We asked ourselves, “At what point would you have given up?” Fortunately, Zerb never did. How appropriate was it, then, to see Zerbin Singleton cutting across the field to catch a pass, then beat a Utah defender in a race down the sideline to put Navy within a field goal of tying the game in the last minute? I had given up, but the Navy team never did. I should have known better. This team came back from an 11-point deficit in the 4th quarter against Duke, fought through multiple overtimes against Pittsburgh and Notre Dame, and rallied to beat North Texas despite trailing by 18 on 3 separate occasions. This is a team whose defense saved its best plays for the end of games, and who didn’t miss a beat when its starting quarterback missed a game. How foolish was I, then, to have abandoned all hope after Darrell Mack found the end zone with 1:27 left to play?
That will be the story of this 2007 Navy football team. The never-say-die attitude of Zerbin Singleton was carried on by his teammates until the last series of the last game. There were several points during the season where everyone might have understood if Navy just ran out of steam. They could have given up, and nobody would have thought any worse of them. But that wouldn’t have been acceptable to themselves, and that’s the attitude the Mids played with.
Hopefully my DVD recorder picked up the game, although my wife says that she isn’t optimistic. I have some thoughts on the game but I want to see it again to validate them. I also have some more pictures to upload, but my camera is in my checked bag. So for now, I just wanted to pass along how proud I am of these players. I wouldn’t trade these guys for anything. Beat Towson.