SI Vault
December 09, 1957
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December 09, 1957

Events & Discoveries

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"Did you ever see a line like that?" Forrestal bubbled. "Eighty-eight yards. Army, the best ground offense in the nation, and all they can get from us is 88 yards. Now you know why we call our line the Grocery Seven. They bring home the bacon."

He posed for a picture with Ned Oldham, the halfback who scored all of Navy's points.

"Oldham was great today. He wasn't running with his legs. He was running with his heart. That first touchdown...six guys must have nailed him and still he goes over.

"You know what helped us win today? Those blue jerseys [Navy, for the first time in history, wore light blue jerseys with gold numerals]. We were supposed to wear white, but we've been having bad luck in white. We lost the North Carolina game in white and tied Duke. So we asked Eddie [Coach Erdelatz] if we could have another color for the Army game. He had them made about a week ago. Superstitions are silly I guess, but even if they are, these blue jerseys really helped."

When the Naval Academy superintendent, Rear Admiral W. R. Smedberg III, announced that he would permit the team to play Rice in the Cotton Bowl, Fullback Ray Wellborn fell into a trance.

"This is something I've been dreaming about since I was 8 years old," said Wellborn.

"I'm from Houston, see. I used to play for Rice before I came to the Academy. Doak Walker was my idol when I was a kid. I used to paint his number 37 on my chest with Merthiolate so my mother couldn't make me take it off when I went to bed. I used to dream of playing in the Cotton Bowl just like Doak Walker. Now it's happened and I almost can't believe it. Man, this is the happiest day of my life."

One of the Navy trainers shouted over the locker room din: "Hasn't anybody got anything to drink but milk? How can I celebrate with nothing stronger than grade A?"

Bob Reifsnyder, Navy's battling All-America tackle who got tossed out of the game for fighting (see page 20), shouted back:

"You think you got troubles? How can I smile for the photographers with this tooth that's coming out?"

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