Navy beat Air Force in dramatic fashion this past Saturday, scoring a touchdown with 15 seconds left to win, 48-45. Navy squandered a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter but marched 75 yards in 1:38 to improve to 5-0.
Afterward, Navy head football coach Ken Niumatalolo became emotional.
“I guess that’s just kind of me. My kids told me either I’m yelling at them or crying,” Niumatalolo said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “I’m just an emotional person. But I guess (it’s also) just gratitude. A lot of times I’m overwhelmed by coaching these guys. I feel very blessed to coach such great young men. For me, I think about the totality of things. I see these young men, and I remember being in their homes recruiting them, their families. And then to see all that they go through and to see them experience some success on the field, those are the kind of thoughts that go through my brain. I just see everything. I see them coming on their official visits. I see them making a decisions to come. When they have success, to me, there’s nothing greater as a coach.”
Navy, which is ranked 25th in country, plays at Memphis this Saturday at 3:45 p.m. ET. If things go well for the Midshipmen, don’t be surprised to see some high-stepping from Niumatalolo, who couldn’t contain his excitement after Zach Abey’s game-winning touchdown pass against Air Force.
“My kids are all older. They just kind of laugh,” Niumatalolo said. “They send me all these funny emojis. They’re like, ‘Dad, will you stop doing those kinds of things after the game?’ I didn’t even realize it. I was kind of high-stepping and then I think I pulled my quad. They’re yelling at me, ‘Coach, do you want to go for one or two?’ It took me a while to get back on the other side of the field. But I look at some of this stuff and I’m like, ‘Geez, I look like a moron.’ The best part is I don’t even know it’s happening. I just start running.”