BALTIMORE (AP) -- Brady Quinn enjoyed an afternoon that would
have satisfied almost every quarterback in the nation, especially
one with a shot at winning the Heisman Trophy.
With Saturday's 38-14 win over Navy, Notre Dame extended the longest winning streak against one opponent in I-A history. Also of note, 2006 represents the 80th straight year this series has been played, making it the longest continuous intersectional rivalry in the country.
Quinn accounted for four touchdowns and No. 11 Notre Dame
amassed a season-high 471 yards Saturday in a 38-14 victory over
Navy, the Fighting Irish's 43rd consecutive win in the series.
With Quinn leading the way, the Irish (7-1) scored on their
first five possessions to take a 31-14 lead. The Irish were then
stuffed at the Navy 1 before Quinn completed his marvelous
performance with his third touchdown pass.
Six scores in seven possessions is impressive work, but Quinn
lamented Notre Dame's lone unproductive drive.
"One of the things our offense wanted to work on this week was
being more consistent throughout the entire game," he said. "I
think you saw that with the exception of that one drive when we
didn't get it in at the goal line."
What could possibly be better than scoring 31 points on the
opening five drives?
"Six out of six and making them all touchdowns," Quinn said.
"That's our goal every time, especially when we're in the red
Quinn finished 18-for-25 for 295 yards, and he also ran 19 yards
for a score. Darius Walker ran for 103 yards on 20 carries and
Rhema McKnight had two touchdown catches to help the Irish win
their fifth straight.
Although Quinn found fault with the offense, Notre Dame coach
Charlie Weis was delighted with the way the Irish played after last
week's 21-17 comeback win over UCLA.
"The first five times we got the ball on offense, we scored.
That's always a good thing," Weis said. "To be honest with you,
that was our intent coming into the game. We felt that on offense
we haven't been running the ball, we haven't been playing
consistent. What we had to do is have one of those games when we
got the ball and scored early and often. Fortunately, that's how it
For a while, Navy kept pace with the Irish. Notre Dame led 17-14
in the second quarter and yielded 211 yards rushing before
"The way their offense runs, they're tough to stop," Quinn
said. "We knew we had to put more points on the board because they
have a potent offense and they're able to meticulously drive down
the field and get scores."
Navy quarterback Kalpo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada scored two touchdowns
in his first college start and Reggie Campbell ran for 81 yards,
but the Midshipmen couldn't mount enough offense to beat Notre Dame
for the first time since Roger Staubach pioneered a 35-14 win in
Notre Dame's winning streak against Navy (5-3) is the longest
against one opponent in NCAA history.
"I told our guys at halftime I thought we had a chance, but
you're not going to beat them if you can't stop them once," Navy
coach Paul Johnson said.
By the time the Midshipmen got that one stop, it was 31-14. And
Quinn made amends for that shortcoming on the next series, throwing
a 6-yard touchdown pass to McKnight for a 24-point cushion with
"He is bigger than anybody we have on defense. He's a
specimen," Johnson said of Quinn. "He throws ball well and when
he gets the time like today..."
Notre Dame led 17-14 in the second quarter before Quinn threw a
33-yard TD pass to McKnight.
After Navy ended its first possession of the second half with a
punt, Quinn capped a 60-yard drive with a 19-yard run -- his longest
since 2004 -- to make it 31-14. The drive was extended by a personal
foul call against the Midshipmen after Notre Dame came up short on
a third-and-19 play.
"Seems like every mistake we made, they took advantage of it,"
Navy linebacker Tyler Tidwell said.
Navy completed only four passes and managed only 60 yards
rushing after halftime.
"They didn't do much wrong in the first half," Weis said. "In
the second half, we got the best of them."
Navy kept it close before halftime, even though the Irish
averaged 9.9 yards on 29 plays.
Walker ran for 18 yards on the game's first play from scrimmage,
and Notre Dame went up 3-0 on a 40-yard field goal by Carl Gioia.
Quinn's first pass was a 12-yarder to John Carlson, giving the
senior quarterback a school-record 44 straight games with a
Notre Dame made it 10-0 with a 36-yard pass from Quinn to David
Grimes, who made a diving catch in the left side of the end zone on
Navy countered with a a 1-yard touchdown run by Kaheaku-Enhada,
but the Irish needed only seven plays to make it 17-7. Travis
Thomas scored on a 16-yard run to cap the drive.
Navy mounted a 13-play drive that ended with a 1-yard run by
Kaheaku-Enhada, but the Midshipmen would get no closer.