A BRIEF HISTORY OF NAVY FOOTBALL AND GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWNS

The government’s fiscal year begins on October 1 every year, which means that any government shutdown caused by the inability to pass a budget will probably happen during football season. In the past, that didn’t make much of a difference to Navy football:

1976

The federal government was in partial shutdown from September 30-October 11.

10/02/76 – Navy played Boston College in Annapolis
10/09/76 – Navy played Air Force in Colorado Springs

1977

The federal government was in partial shutdown three times; from September 30-October 13, October 31-November 9, November 30-December 9.

10/01/77 – Navy played Duke in Durham
10/08/77 – Navy played Air Force in Annapolis
11/05/77 – Navy played Syracuse in Annapolis

1978

The federal government was in partial shutdown from September 30-October 18.

9/30/78 – Navy played Boston College at BC
10/07/78 – Navy played Air Force in Colorado Springs
10/14/78 – Navy played Duke in Annapolis

1979

The federal government was shut down from September 30-October 12.

10/06/79 – Navy played Air Force in Annapolis

1982

The federal government was shut down from September 30-October 2.

10/02/82 – Navy played Duke in Durham

1983

The federal government was shut down from November 10-14.

11/12/83 – Navy played South Carolina in Columbia

1986

The federal government was shut down from October 16-18.

10/18/86 – Navy played Penn in Annapolis

1990

The federal government was shut down from October 5-9.

10/06/90 – Navy played Air Force in Colorado Springs

1995

The federal government was shut down from November 13-19.

11/18/95 – Navy played Tulane in Annapolis

To be fair, not every government shutdown is the same. Regardless of the nature of the shutdown, though, Navy football was never forced to cancel a game. Contrary to some reports you might have read, Navy’s athletic department isn’t government-operated. There is no reason that the Navy-Air Force game should be cancelled this weekend. The order by the Department of Defense to cancel service academy athletic competitions is strictly a PR move.

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20 Responses

  1. Why did they cancel the soccer game?

    • Revenge, scorched earth policy (make it hurt)? Follow the trail of wear the order originated from. Seems to me that Navy (NAAA) is loosing more money then it would save by not playing the Navy-Air Force game.

    • A reminder to all that despite the touchy nature of this subject, the blog’s strict no-politics rule remains in effect.

  2. While NAAA is NAF and not part of the appropriations debacle, are support staff and facilities supported with APF? I don’t know the answer. Is AF athletics operated as a NAFI like Navy?

    • NAAA is not a NAFI. It is a 501(C)3 private contractor.

    • My apologies about status. Regardless of 501c3 or NAF status, don’t they still rely on APF support?

    • Glad the decision is to play the game! Look forward to going!!

      It appears the reference to NAFI was not totally incorrect.

      http://www.navysports.com/ot/what-is-naaa.html

      At least a portion of NAAA is NAF (non-appropriated funds)…

      “Non-appropriated (non-government) funds are generated through admissions charged for intercollegiate athletic contests, mainly football, appearances by football on television, game guarantees, marketing, promotions, corporate sponsorships, dues and gifts from Blue & Gold members of the Association, and from interest on invested funds. All NAAA coaches, administration, and staff are compensated for their professional services via non-appropriated (non-government) funding that is externally generated by the NAAA.”

      GO NAVY, BEAT AIR FORCE!!!

    • It seems to me that Navy might be able to financial inducements to cover AF’s lost govt revenue. That should be easy enough. I cannot imagine that AF wants to cancel this game

      All politics aside, I agree with Mike that DOD announcement is clearly a PR move.

      NAAA is not a “private contractor”. The 501(C) 3 merely refers to the section of the IRS code under which the NAAA operates as a non-profit entity.

    • Gail, you’re mixing things up here. Just because there are two organizations that use money that doesn’t come from the federal budget, that doesn’t mean they are the same.

      A NAFI is still a government organization, just one that operates with money that doesn’t come from Congress. Base MWR programs are a good example. The money that an NAFI makes, while not appropriated funds, is still considered government money. The Air Force Academy Athletic Association is a NAFI. Troy Calhoun is technically a government contractor.

      About 1/3 of Air Force’s athletic budget comes from appropriated funds.

      NAAA is not a government organization. It is a private nonprofit organized under section 501(c)(3) of the US tax code. Its employees are not government employees or contractors with the exception of those that have a role outside of varsity athletics (some coaches double as PE instructors). NAAA money is not government money, which makes a government term like “NAF” inappropriate to use when describing it.

      The key term in your quote is “non-government.” A NAFI’s money is government money and subject to different rules and regulations.

    • Thanks for breaking it down Mike. So let’s just blame AF! :)

  3. I know it is not the same thing, but the Army Navy Game was postponed for a week after the JFK assasination. But they ultimately did play the game. Also wasn’t the Northwestern game cancelled after 9-11?

    • Yes, but none of that was for budgetary reasons.

  4. I would guess that NAAA would absolutely prefer the game go forward, as would USNA in general. You have a sold out game on a major network and the money associated with holding this game on Saturday.

    Whenever the game might be rescheduled, these same conditions may not apply, and the loss of revenue might be significant. It’s unfortunate all the way around. I am sure that NAAA would find a way to put the puzzle pieces together to make the game happen. However, can USAFA? I don’t really know since their Athletic Department money is all Federal Funds, as far as I know.

    I think there’s a chance the game might go forward, but I guess we will know for sure on Thursday.

  5. Send this to Hagel.

  6. I just want to BEAT THE SNOT out of air force!
    It doesn’t need to be close!

  7. Man some of you jerks just can’t help yourselves. I won’t allow this blog to turn into a newspaper comment section, so stop trying.

  8. The first possible date for rescheduling the 5 October Navy-Air Force game is 7 December – the Saturday before the 14 December Army-Navy game – could be a fun December!!!

    • Won’t happen. Bet the ranch on it.

  9. Let’s cut off our nose to spite our face….

  10. Can you compile a similar list about the Blue Angels shutting down during any of these government shutdowns. :)

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