The Navy has rejected a request from the agent for running back Napoleon McCallum to allow the former Naval Academy star to play professional football for the Los Angeles Raiders for a second consecutive season.

Agent Darryl Dennis made the request on behalf of McCallum, 23, who currently is a supply officer on the U.S.S. California in Alameda, Calif.

Dennis said yesterday that he based his request, in part, on verbal commitments regarding the 1987 season that he said were made to McCallum by his commanding officer and by other "high-ranking" Navy officials. Dennis said he also based his request on an internal Navy memo sent to former Navy Secretary John Lehman on June 9, 1986, from Vice Adm. Dudley Carlson, in which Carlson suggested McCallum be reassigned to a ship in Long Beach this season. Carlson also wrote that Navy lawyers found McCallum's participation with the Raiders on a "not-to-interfere" basis "legally unobjectionable." Lehman approved the memo "in concept."

However, Capt. Mac Williams, special assistant for legal affairs to Navy Secretary James H. Webb Jr., who replaced Lehman this spring, notifed Dennis in a letter received yesterday that "it is difficult to understand why Ens. McCallum would have relied on that document as a commitment regarding his professional football career since Secretary Lehman's approval of the memo specifically provided that 'while on active duty, Ens. McCallum's association with the Raiders cannot include competing in games.' "

"Clearly," Williams wrote, "the circumstances . . . in that memorandum have changed to the extent that it has no applicability to {McCallum's} present situation."

Williams also wrote that McCallum "will be treated the same as other officers on active duty and will not be afforded any special accomodations as you requested in order to permit him to play professional football."

Dennis said, "We feel they have repudiated commitments made to Napoleon and that they are isolating him solely because he's an athlete and because of his high visibility.

"This is not the end of the issue. If the secretary {Webb} wants a confrontation from me, he'll get it," Dennis added.

In his response to Dennis, Williams wrote that McCallum incurred the standard five-year military commitment upon graduating from the Naval Academy in December 1985. McCallum now has the option of submitting a resignation request and seeking a reserve status appointment, if he so desires -- although such requests "are normally disapproved," Williams wrote.

McCallum could not be reached for comment yesterday. However, Dennis said, "In view of the fact the Navy has presented that {resignation request} option, it would be wise for Napoleon to evaluate it."

McCallum signed a four-year contract with the Raiders that reportedly included an estimated $750,000 signing bonus. Sources indicated McCallum received the entire signing bonus and his salary for last season, but that he will not receive his salaries for the next three seasons if he does not play.

Dennis said McCallum purchased a home in Southern California "and his mortgage payments will exceed his monthly salary from the Navy."

"You're talking about a person who has grown accustomed to the lifestyle of a professional football player," he added.

Last August, McCallum officially was authorized by Lehman to play for the Raiders last season as long as it did not interfere with his assigned shipboard duties. In case of a conflict between his military and professional duties, the Navy said in a statement at the time, McCallum's "military duties will take precedent."

In April, however, the newly appointed Webb reversed the controversial policy when, citing the cases of McCallum and basketball star David Robinson, announced that the service will not provide special accomodations for officers who want to participate in professional sports.

The policy, in effect, means that McCallum likely will not be able to play professional football until he finishes his five-year tour of active duty. Robinson was selected by the San Antonio Spurs with the No. 1 pick of the National Basketball Association draft in June, even though he must first serve two years active duty. Robinson then will be placed in a selected reserve status for four years. He will be permitted to play professionally during that time.

"McCallum was not identified as being not physically qualified for duty in the unrestricted line, as was Midshipman Robinson {who is 7 feet 1}," Mark D. Neuhart, Webb's spokesman, said yesterday. "The similarity is that they are both very gifted athletes who have indicated a desire to participate in professional athletics. That's where the similarity ends."