Tag Archive | "Noah Copeland"

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Navy FB Copeland named to Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award watch list

Posted on 20 August 2014 by WNST Staff

Navy Fullback Noah Copeland On Watch List For The Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award

ANNAPOLIS, Md.—Senior fullback Noah Copeland is one of 43 players on the watch list for the Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award.

The Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award recognizes the top offensive player in the FBS who also exhibits the enduring characteristics that define Earl Campbell: integrity, performance, teamwork, sportsmanship, drive, community and tenacity; specifically tenacity to persist and determination to overcome adversity and injury in pursuit of reaching goals. In addition, the nominee must meet one or more of the following criteria: born in Texas and/or graduated from a Texas High School and/or played at a Texas-based junior college or four year college. 

The Watch List announced today will be narrowed to 16 semifinalists in November and then four finalists in December. The finalists will be brought to Tyler, Texas for The Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Awards Banquet scheduled for January 14, 2015.

Earl Campbell graduated from John Tyler High School in Tyler before joining the University of Texas Longhorns under legendary Coach Darrell K. Royal. In his senior year, he led the nation with 1,744 yards rushing and 19 touchdowns, going on to win the Longhorns’ first Heisman Trophy.

He was subsequently drafted by the Houston Oilers where he won Rookie of the Year honors in 1978 and went on to lead the NFL in rushing three times. Campbell earned NFL MVP in 1979 and was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1991.

Copeland is a three-year letterwinner and elected by his teammates to serve as a co-captain, along with safety Parrish Gaines, for the 2014 season.

Copeland rushed for 339 yards on 69 carries and two touchdowns, while catching three passes for 43 yards and a touchdown during an injury plagued junior year.

As a sophomore, Copeland rushed for 738 yards on 162 carries and two touchdowns as he finished the year as Navy’s second-leading rusher.

As a freshman, he mainly played on special teams and came up with seven tackles and forced a fumble.  He had a huge Army-Navy game, recording four tackles and forcing a fumble that Navy recovered and later scored on.

Tickets are still available for Navy’s season opener against Ohio State on Saturday, August 30th at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. Kickoff is set for 12 noon.

Tickets are $75 for the lower and upper levels and $125 for club seats.  To purchase tickets, call 1-800-US4-NAVY or you can buy them on the web at: http://bit.ly/1vxIyoF 

The Navy football team finished the 2013 campaign with a 9-4 record, won the Commander-In-Chief’s Trophy for the ninth time in the last 11 years, qualified for a bowl game for the 10th time in the last 11 years, won a bowl game for just the eighth time in school history and defeated Army for a series-record 12th-consecutive year. The 2013 team is just the fifth in Navy’s 132-year history of playing football to win at least nine games in a season, beat Army and win a bowl game joining the 1957, 1978, 2004 and 2009 squads.

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FB Copeland, S Gaines named 2014 Navy football captains

Posted on 08 February 2014 by WNST Staff

Noah Copeland And Parrish Gaines Named 2014 Football Team Captains
The Mids open up the 2014 season in Baltimore against Ohio State

Navy head football coach Ken Niumatalolo announced Friday night at the annual Navy football banquet that rising seniors fullback Noah Copeland (San Antonio, Texas) and safety Parrish Gaines (Smyrna, Tenn.) have been elected team captains for the 2014 football season by their teammates.

“Being elected team captain at the Naval Academy is one of the highest honors you can receive at an institution that prides itself on producing great leaders,” said Niumatalolo.  “Noah and Parrish are great leaders on the field, in Bancroft Hall and in the classroom and there is no question in my mind that they will do a great job in this very important role.  They both work extremely hard and will set an example for the entire team on and off the field.”

Copeland played in nine of Navy’s 13 games last fall, missing four games due to injury.  He rushed for 339 yards and two touchdowns on 69 carries (4.9 yards per carry) and caught three passes for 43 yards and a touchdown.  He rushed for a career-high 153 yards on 28 carries and caught a 20-yard touchdown pass against Toledo and had a 39-yard touchdown run in the Army-Navy game.

Gaines had started 24-consecutive games at cornerback before switching to safety for the Pitt game due to injuries in the Navy secondary and ended up starting the final seven games at safety.  Gaines finished fourth on the team in tackles with 65, while posting off a team-high tying three interceptions.  His biggest interception of the year came against San Jose State when he intercepted David Fales in the end zone in the third overtime, setting up Keenan Reynolds’ 25-yard touchdown run to give Navy a thrilling 58-52 victory.

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Reynolds’ poise, execution in final drive against Army stuff of legend

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Reynolds’ poise, execution in final drive against Army stuff of legend

Posted on 08 December 2012 by Glenn Clark

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - I hope those watching the 113th Army/Navy game Saturday afternoon didn’t come away from the game thinking “if (Navy QB) Keenan Reynolds is doing this already, imagine what he could do for the next three years.”

It’s not as if it isn’t possible that the true freshman from Antioch, TN doesn’t have grand heights attainable during his next three years of eligibility in Annapolis. It’s just that when a teenager accomplishes what Reynolds did Saturday at Lincoln Financial Field, it deserves to stand alone without any future context.

The United States Naval Academy has made wins over the United States Military Academy a bit of habit in recent years, claiming 11 straight victories. Most haven’t been quite as gut-wrenching as Saturday’s 17-13 victory.

Before Saturday, Navy hadn’t trailed Army in the fourth quarter of any game since 2001-the year Army last defeated the Midshipmen. This time the contest moved past the midway point of the fourth quarter with the Black Knights not only leading Navy 13-10, but also in possession of the football inside the Navy 20 yard line.

It was a situation wholly unprecedented for any Navy player, but it would take only eight plays for the nervous energy hanging over the Brigade of Midshipmen to turn into an exuberant celebration. More importantly, it would take four particularly key plays from Reynolds that won’t soon by forgotten by military faithful. It would take an uncommon level of confidence, moxie and ability from a young man his age to make it happen.

“Before the drive started, I told the guys, ‘this is the one’” Reynolds explained after the game. “We have to go down and score. They all looked at me and were like, ‘Let’s go!’”

“Keenan comes in, uses his man voice and calls the play, and does a really good job” WR Brandon Turner added. “And the way he talks and the way his huddle prescense is, because I played quarterback in high school so I know how important that is to what extent, he makes you want to believe in him.”

Facing 4th & 5 from the Navy 19 yard line, Army chose to trot out K Eric Osteen for a 37 yard field goal attempt instead of attempting a conversion that would leave them tantalizingly close to a game sealing touchdown. The kick would sail wide left and give the Midshipmen the ball back with 6:57 to play. The Mids would immediately find trouble, but Reynolds connected with Geoffrey Whiteside for 10 yards on 3rd & 8 to reverse fortune and gain momentum. He wouldn’t look back.

Two plays later, Reynolds escaped a crowded pocket and juked a defender before tip-toeing down the right sideline to gain 11 yards and another first down. He then through a beautiful downfield ball to Turner that the 6’4″ receiver would easily haul in 49 yards downfield to set up a 1st and goal from the Army 8 yard line. The receiver would later describe the throw as the best he had received from Reynolds all season.

On the very next play, Reynolds waltzed into the endzone on a quarterback follow to punctuate an incredible game-turning drive and fully etch his name in Army-Navy lore.

The situation was unusual for Navy against Army, but it wasn’t the first time in Reynolds’ short tenure as Navy’s starting quarterback that he was faced with adversity. In fact, Navy head coach Ken Niumatalolo said after the game he wasn’t surprised at all by the remarkable heroics of the game’s Most Valuable Player.

“If he can come into the Air Force game down by eight in the fourth quarter with eight minutes left at their place and have clear eyes and not miss a beat and not seem nervous, I don’t know if he can be in a tougher situation.”

Reynolds worked mop-up duty for the Mids in early season blowout losses to Notre Dame (in Dublin, Ireland) and at Penn State. He entered a hopeless situation in the 4th quarter of a shutout loss to San Jose State in the Mids’ fourth game of the season as well. But he didn’t officially become the Naval Academy’s starting quarterback until the Midshipmen were desperate.

Sitting at 1-3 on the season, the Midshipmen found themselves 9:03 away from losing grip on their most significant preseason goals in Colorado Springs, CO October 6. They trailed Air Force 21-13, with a loss assuring they could not win back the Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy from the Falcons and meaning they would have to finish the season 5-2 just to get bowl eligible. Niumatalolo benched then starter Trey Miller in favor of Reynolds, who quickly navigated a six play, 75 yard drive that would tie things up after a two point conversion by FB Noah Copeland. Reynolds would put together another TD drive in overtime to finish off the Falcons and completely turn Navy’s season around.

Niumatalolo described Navy’s win Saturday as “indicative of the season” they had. Perhaps in no way more than in the resolution of their freshman quarterback. When everything mattered most, the young man was absolutely unflappable.

Keenan Reynolds isn’t even yet 19 years old.

It’s hard to fathom the type of poise it took to author a comeback. It’s hard to put into words the intensity of an Army/Navy game. It’s hard to imagine a young man roughly six months removed from prom clinging to the term “I.M.A.N-It’s Not About Me” in the waining moments to give his team salvation. (Reynolds said I.M.A.N. has been a rallying cry for the entire Navy football program this season.)

“There’s something about the kid, and just the way he led us on that last drive, it was unbelievable” Turner described. “In one of the biggest games as a freshman, he came in and beat one of the better Army teams the last few years. That’s incredible. That’s remarkable.”

I couldn’t say it any better.

-G

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