7:00 PM ET, September 6, 2003
Amon Carter Stadium, FORT WORTH, TX
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) -- TCU coach Gary Patterson knew how to get his sluggish team's attention. A little halftime chat did the trick.
"We got our butts chewed out at halftime. That woke us up," quarterback Tye Gunn said. "We weren't doing what we were supposed to. It was obvious by the zero points."
The No. 25 Horned Frogs scored on their first two drives after halftime and went on to beat Navy 17-3 Saturday night, just five days after a season-opening win at Tulane.
Despite the quick turnaround, TCU was a three-touchdown favorite over Navy, which has lost 35 straight games to Top 25 teams.
Still, the Frogs (2-0) were lucky to be trailing only 3-0 at halftime. It could have been much worse.
Eddie Carthan recovered a fumble and intercepted a pass in the first half for Navy, which managed only Geoff Blumenfeld's 32-yard field goal despite getting into TCU territory on all six of its drives before halftime -- and to at least the 15 on three straight.
"We can't put ourselves in that position," Patterson said. "Navy outplayed us in the first half and had a great plan for us. The only positive that comes out of one of these games is you find out what kind of character we have."
Nick Browne's 23-yard field goal tied the game to start the second half, and Connally ran 2 yards for the go-ahead score on TCU's next possession on his only carry of the game.
Navy (1-1) last beat a ranked opponent eight years ago, 17-13 over No. 20 Virginia.
The Midshipmen, who had 598 total yards in their opener against VMI, were held to 207 yards Saturday -- just 37 after halftime.
"TCU's speed and power caught up to us in the second half," Navy quarterback Craig Candeto said. "Our front line got beat up and we just couldn't stay with them."
Gunn completed 14 of 20 passes for 173 yards, and improved to 6-0 as a starter. The Frogs had averaged 40 points a game in the sophomore quarterback's first five starts.
TCU finally crossed midfield on the first drive after halftime, and that came after a pass interference penalty.
The Frogs then had third-and-9 before Gunn found Harrell wide open over the middle on two straight plays for gains of 17 and 22 yards to get down to the Navy 9. Hobbs appeared to have an open lane to the end zone after taking a pitch to the right, but stumbled and fell down at the 5 before Browne's field goal.
Connally's TD capped a 10-play, 88-yard scoring drive that included passes of 26 and 25 yards and a 19-yard run by Hobbs, who had 79 yards on 20 carries.
Harrell caught five passes for 70 yards.
It was the seventh time since 1991 that the Horned Frogs played two games within a six-day period. This is the first time they've won both of them, and now they have a week off before playing Vanderbilt on Sept. 20.
Their reward: Patterson, feeling much better after the game, gave them two days off before they have to be back at practice Tuesday.
Marvin Godbolt's interception early in the fourth quarter came two plays before Hobbs' TD. The sophomore has 16 rushing TDs in 10 career games.
Blumenfeld's field goal came on the first of the three straight drives when Navy drove to at least the TCU 15. The drive started after Carthan recovered Gunn's fumble.
Candeto's 43-yard pass helped the Midshipmen get to the TCU 13 on their next drive, but he bobbled the snap on a 30-yard field goal attempt.
Navy got the ball back two plays later when Carthan intercepted a pass by Gunn, who threw under pressure. On first-and-goal from the 3, Kyle Eckel tried to bull into the end zone, but Brandon Williams knocked the ball loose and Jeremy Modkins recovered at the 1.
TCU's average starting field possession in the first half was its own 11, starting at the 1 and 3 after Navy's Shalimar Brazier downed punts.
Candeto was 7-for-15 for 75 yards, and rushed for 48 yards on 24 carries for Navy, which had won consecutive games for the first time since 1999.
"If we want to continue the progress of our program, we must learn to finish," said Carthan, who had nine tackles.
The Midshipmen haven't won three in a row since 1997, when they won their last four games to go 7-4 -- their last winning season.
|3rd Down Conversions||6-19||7-13|
|4th Down Conversions||2-3||0-1|
|FG||5:39||GEOFF BLUMENFELD 32 YD FG|
Drive info: 10 plays, 26 yards.
|FG||11:37||NICK BROWNE 23 YD FG|
Drive info: 8 plays, 56 yards.
|TD||4:16||COREY CONNALLY 2 YD RUN (NICK BROWNE KICK)|
Drive info: 10 plays, 88 yards.
|TD||13:53||LONTA HOBBS 13 YD RUN (NICK BROWNE KICK)|
Drive info: 2 plays, 8 yards.