Navy and Maryland, which have not played each other in football since 1965, may resume their rivalry in the 1984 and 1985 seasons, the athletic directors of both schools said yesterday.
The series ended in 1965, following a game in which a Maryland player made an obscene gesture to the Navy crowd. However, many sources say the series ended because the game was becoming a bigger rivalry than Army-Navy.
Both Navy Athletic Director Bo Coppedge and Carl James, his Maryland counterpart, said that finding suitable dates in the 1984 and 1985 seasons is the chief stumbling block to resuming the intrastate series. They plan to meet soon to try to iron out the dates.
"We're serious about it," said Coppedge. "I'd say right now there's a 50-50 chance we can get together. It depends on the date available and where it fits into the schedule."
A major concern is that Navy has what Coppedge considers three "emotional games" -- with Army, Air Force and Notre Dame -- and, he says, "I'm not so sure in my own mind how many emotional games you can ask a coach to play."
So, he would be looking for a date that would not give the Mids two consecutive such games.
Although college football schedules are made up for more than a decade in advance, the chancer for a Navy-Maryland meeting as early as 1984 arose with the addition of Georgia Tech, a Navy opponent through 1985, to the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Georgia Tech and the other ACC schools are trying to switch games in an effort to get Tech a league schedule as soon as possible. There is where the Maryland-Navy possibility arises.
Georgia Tech and Navy will play through 1981. In 1982 and 1983, Navy and Georgia Tech have traded opponents, Tech taking ACC member Wake Forest and Navy getting South Carolina.
The Navy-Tech series is scheduled through 1985, so the 1984 and 1985 dates are available. If James and Coppedge can strike a deal, Maryland would get Navy back on its schedule and Tech would get another ACC opponent, depending on the fourth team involved.
It is not certain whether the games would be played in Annapolis and College Park, or Baltimore and Washington where bigger crowds are possible because of larger stadiums.
"I think," James said yesterday, "If we sit down and talk, we can work something out. It's in our best interests to do so. The game would have good local interest, be good for eastern football and be good for recruiting."