PHILADELPHIA — Navy had already lost the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy. It was not about to lose to Army, too.
Ricky Dobbs threw the longest touchdown pass in the 111-year history of the series and Wyatt Middleton had the longest fumble return in program history as the Midshipmen extended their win streak against Army to nine with a 31-17 victory Saturday.
Dobbs passed for 186 yards and two touchdowns for Navy (9-3). His 77-yard touchdown to John Howell made it 10-0.
Down 17-0, Army (6-6) got a 5-yard touchdown pass from Trent Steelman to Malcolm Brown with 8:19 left in the first half. It was its first touchdown against Navy since the fourth quarter of the 2006 game.
Soon after, Army had it first and goal at the 3. But Steelman got stood up on a keeper. The ball squirted from his hands right to Middleton, who took it 99 yards for the score.
"They had us reeling there," said Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo, whose team failed to win the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy — the round robin among the three service academies — for the first time since 2002 because it lost to Air Force.
"But our defense stepped up."
Army is still headed to its first bowl game since 1996, the Armed Forces Bowl against SMU. But the nine-game skid is the longest in series history.
"Those guys are going to be my future brothers-in-arms," Army senior linebacker Stephen Anderson said. "So as much as I hate to say it, I've got nothing but respect for those guys."
Petrino extension: Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino agreed to a seven-year extension that runs through 2017. It increases Petrino's average salary from $2.7 million to $3.56 million and includes a mutual buyout of $18 million should he leave or be fired in 2011-12. It gradually decreases to $3.9 million in the final year. Petrino is 23-14 in three seasons and this season led the Razorbacks to their first BCS berth (Sugar against Ohio State).
Kentucky suspends QB: Kentucky starting quarterback Mike Hartline was suspended for the Compass Bowl after his arrest on charges of public intoxication and disorderly conduct. Morgan Newton, who started eight games as a freshman last season but has thrown for just 54 yards this season, will start against Pittsburgh.
Syracuse: Freshman Malcolm Cater, the top reserve linebacker, was kicked off the team after being charged in connection with three campus burglaries. He appeared in every game, mostly on special teams, and had 13 tackles and a sack. Also, punter Rob Long is set for surgery Tuesday to remove a benign tumor from his brain.
I-AA: Bo Levi Mitchell threw a 25-yard touchdown in overtime then host Eastern Washington recovered a goal-line fumble to defeat North Dakota State 38-31 in the quarterfinals. It next hosts Villanova. Matt Szczur rushed for two scores, passed for one and caught one as the visiting Wildcats beat Appalachian State 42-24. And visiting Georgia Southern led 20-3 at halftime then held on to beat Wofford 23-20. It plays at Delaware, which beat New Hampshire 16-3 Friday.