ANNAPOLIS, SEPT. 10 -- Navy Coach George Chaump and disaffected quarterback Gary McIntosh met for 45 minutes today and afterward Chaump confirmed that McIntosh had left the football team for good.
"He came over to meet with me and explained his problems," Chaump said. "He was very nice, friendly and pretty emotional. We talked very decently. But he never, never asked to come back.
"I thought that was what he was leading up to, but he never did."
Eventually, Chaump headed for a team meeting and McIntosh went off to drill with his company of midshipmen. McIntosh declined to comment today, but said he would provide his side of the story later this week.
McIntosh, a senior, was told by Chaump on Thursday that Alton Grizzard, the senior cocaptain who is about to become Navy's all-time total offense leader, would start Saturday's opening game against Richmond, which Navy won, 28-17. Although he did not tell Chaump he was leaving the team, McIntosh skipped practice later that day and did not appear for the game.
"At that time, he said, 'I don't think I can take it,' " Chaump recalled. "He explained today what he meant by that, that he wouldn't be back. But I never got that feeling at the time. I kept waiting for him to come back and I was disappointed that he chose not to."
McIntosh, a Gonzaga High graduate who transferred here from Maryland, saw considerable duty as a sophomore, but hardly played last year and eventually was switched to backup wide receiver by coach Elliot Uzelac.
"Gary dwelt on past years and his background here," Chaump said. "I don't know anything about that and I don't want to know. I told him, 'You were treated fairly by me. Why should things in the past affect things now? I wasn't here in the past.' "
Chaump said McIntosh recalled an incident when he fumbled against Notre Dame, was yanked from the lineup and did not play for four games.
"He contrasted that to Saturday, when Grizzard threw an interception for a touchdown, got a pat on the butt and went back in and threw three touchdown passes," Chaump said. "I told him, 'That could have been Gary McIntosh.' What could I do about something that happened before I was here?"
Assuming Grizzard stays healthy, Navy may benefit in the long run from McIntosh's absence, because now sophomore Brian Ellis and plebe Jason Van Matre can get more work and will be better prepared next year, after Grizzard is gone.
"I'd have liked to have had Gary around if something should happen to Grizzard," Chaump said. "You want to have two top quarterbacks. But if Grizzard stays healthy, we'll be all right. Ellis and Van Matre need work. Gary got all the work and now he's gone.
"It's sad to get someone ready, have him healthy and yet he's not playing."
Athletic Director Jack Lengyel noted, "If every second-team player felt like that, we wouldn't have a team."
Said Grizzard: "Brian Ellis is going to be a very good quarterback. If I were the coach, I'd have started Brian Ellis. He did a better job than Gary and me."
Offensive guard Michael Davis, who suffered a fractured foot a month ago, returned to practice today and may be able to play against Virginia. . . . Tailback Ivan Bullard, beset by injuries for two years, suffered a pulled hamstring at practice today.