by CollegeFootballPoll.com Staff
December 30, 2013
Navy broke open a tight game with two touchdowns in the 4th quarter and the Midshipmen defense stymied Middle Tennessee for a 24-6 win in the Armed Forces Bowl in Fort Worth on Monday afternoon.
Navy broke a 2-game bowl losing streak and improved its overall bowl record to 8-10-1 while finishing 9-4 on the season for the Academy's best record since 2010 when it also went 9-4.
Head coach Ken Niumatololo raised his record to 49-30 in 6 seasons, plus a loss in the 2007 Poinsettia Bowl.
Middle Tennessee finished the season 8-5 and saw its bowl record drop to 1-3. All of MTSU's bowl appearance have come under Rick Stockstill who completed his 100th game as head coach and is 51-49 in 8 seasons with the Blue Raiders.
Quarterback Keenan Reynolds ran for 86 yards on 20 carries and scored 2 touchdowns to give him 31 rushing TD's on the season. He became the first FBS quarterback, and only the fourth player, to score at least 30 touchdowns in a single season. Reynolds joins Oklahoma State's Barry Sanders (37 in 1987), Wisconsin's Montee Ball (33 in 2011) and Colorado State's Kapri Bibbs (31 this season).
The Navy offense saw 9 different players get at least 2 rushes and total 366 yards.
Navy squandered 2 scoring opportunities with fumbles in the red zone and Middle Tennessee hurt its cause with a pair interceptions.
Navy will open next season a 5-game winning streak while the loss ended a 5-game winning streak for the Blue Raiders.
The Congrove Computer Rankings at CollegeFootballPoll.com said Navy had a 4.45-point edge in the contest which is played on the campus of Texas Christian University at Amon G. Carter Stadium with a capacity of 45,000..