Ralph Friedgen spent some time yesterday scouring film of Maryland's defeat of Navy in 2005.
He's also looked at Georgia Tech tape from the last two years.
Anything to get a sense of how Navy will attack the Terrapins in Monday's season opener.
His conclusions about the triple option: Just a bit scary for Maryland fans.
I think navy runs it better than Georgia Tech," Friedgen said. "I think the reason for that is they've been running it longer. I'm sure Paul [Johnson, Georgia Tech's head coach] was very influential in Ken [Niumatalolo]'s development. I think [Navy's Ricky] Dobbs is a better passer than [Georgia Tech's Joshua] Nesbitt, which is another threat. I think Navy plays a lot lower. Of course, they're a lot smaller than Georgia Tech. The plays don't change. It's pretty much the same thing over and over again. Where they really gain a lot of their advantage is they use a multiple formations and a lot of unbalanced formations and they'll change their blocking scheme to the same play and adapt to how you play it. They don't change the plays. They see how you'll defend them and they'll change little subtle things."
The complicating factor to Friedgen is the way Navy approaches things defensively, effectively daring teams to try to take a big play even though the Mids are usually willing to surrender a modest gain on most plays.
It works more often that not, which means Maryland's chances of engaging in a high-scoring game aren't particularly huge. Meanwhile, the Mids' patient defense coupled with their clock-eating offense creates a different set of problems.
"I think it's very important our offense move the football and have very few
if any three-and-outs," Friedgen said. "When you say be aggressive, I think we have to
stay ahead of schedule. [Navy defensive coordinator] Buddy Green, with his defense, what they do is
they play a bend-but-don't-break defense. they want you to become
impatient and take some shots. They'd rather just keep it down and hope
you do that and now all the sudden you're facing a third-and-long and
you're out of there and now here comes their offense to control a ball
you don't see for another 10 minutes."