The Washington Times - July 24, 2008, 12:07PM

There was no good reason to let the opportunity to ask Paul Johnson a little bit about Navy pass at the ACC Kickoff.

Namely, just how he thinks his successor, Ken Niumatalolo, will fare now that he’s in charge of the Midshipmen and Johnson is at Georgia Tech.

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Niumatalolo did coach the Mids in last year’s Poinsettia Bowl loss to Utah. And it certainly remains to be seen if he can match Johnson’s 45-29 record over six seasons; over the last five years, it was a gaudy 43-19.

Johnson said he still talks to his protege occasionally, “moreso personal stuff than football.”

And as for how he’ll fare in his first full season in Annapolis, which begins Aug. 30 against Towson?

“I think he’ll do well,” Johnson said. “I hope he does. I think he’s demanding. I think he’ll be a guy that doesn’t accept mediocrity. That’s one of the most important things you can do. I think they’ll be successful.”

Navy opens camp Aug. 1.

 – Patrick Stevens