Dec. 30, 2006
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -Boston College found a most improbable way to extend the nation's longest bowl winning streak - with a big assist from Navy.
Walk-on Steve Aponavicius kicked a 37-yard field goal on the final play and the Eagles beat the Midshipmen 25-24 in the Meineke Bowl, a seventh straight bowl win that concluded up a tumultuous month for BC.
Navy, which had 322 yards rushing, seemingly had the game won. BC (10-3) was out of timeouts and Navy only had to run out the clock. But Reggie Campbell fumbled a pitch from quarterback Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada and BC's Jolann Dunbar recovered at the Navy 40 with 1:43 left.
Matt Ryan completed a long pass to tight end Ryan Purvis and Aponavicius, who had replaced the suspended Ryan Ohliger in midseason, calmly kicked the game-winner, setting off a wild celebration for the Eagles and their interim head coach.
Former Coach Tom O'Brien stunned the team three weeks ago when he left for Atlantic Coast Conference rival North Carolina State. Green Bay offensive coordinator Jeff Jagodzinski was hired to replace him, but won't join the team until the Packers' season is over.
Defensive coordinator Frank Spaziani, a former Navy assistant, was named interim coach for the bowl and is expected to stay on as an assistant under Jagodzinski. But several assistants are also expected to join O'Brien's staff.
Ryan completed 20-of-29 passes for 242 yards and a touchdown, and overcame two interceptions and three sacks.
Shun White rushed for 116 yards and Kaheaku-Enhada rushed threw two touchdown passes for Navy (9-4), which had a four-game winning streak snapped.
Boston College's Tony Gonzalez, left, loses his helmet during the second half of the Meineke Car Care Bowl. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)