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Once a season filled with Rose Bowl dreams, Julian Pinnix-Odrick and the Knights now look to save their last glimmer of hope for postseason football when they take on the Cornhuskers. The junior defensive tackle remains confident in his team’s ability to come together facing adversity.
Head coach Kyle Flood has come under fire in his fourth year at the helm for Rutgers. Without a win Saturday, the pressure may mount.
Junior Steve Longa has tallied 102 total tackles this season, equaling his total in all of 2014. Longa leads the Big Ten in total tackles (second nationally), solo tackles (fourth nationally) and tackles per game (11.3). Longa is the second Knight to record three consecutive 100 tackle seasons.
Senior middle linebacker Kaiwan Lewis said he has done more studying in the film room in his one year on the Banks than he did while at South Carolina.
Junior free safety Anthony Cioffi headlines the most experience in a decimated defensive backfield. The Knights hope to rebound against Nebraska Saturday.
Junior right guard Chris Muller has been entrenched in offensive line for Rutgers, offering leadership along the line of scrimmage.
Head coach Kyle Flood’s “1-0” mantra has been repeated all week long despite the team’s troubles, but Rutgers needs to win out to become bowl eligible.
Senior placekicker Kyle Federico and junior kick returner Janarion Grant headline a special teams unit producing for Rutgers recently.
Senior captain Quentin Gause has saved his best for last, posting a career-high 76 tackles and leads the team with 10 tackles for loss in his final season on the Banks.
After sitting atop the Big Ten in completion percentage and pass efficiency, sophomore quarterback Chris Laviano has strung together career-worst efforts.
It was one of his first days on campus.A burly freshman offensive lineman was about to start a successful year for the Rutgers football team, but he didn’t know it then.
On a defense that ranks at the bottom of the Big Ten against the pass and in total defense, it's hard to believe that three defenders are having career years for the Rutgers football team.Two seniors and a junior have surpassed all expectations this season and they all happen to play in the same position group.After injuries have plagued the Scarlet Knights' defensive line this fall, players were forced to switch positions or step into new roles.
One visit to Ann Arbor is all it takes to see the massive margin between the Rutgers and the University of Michigan, beginning with the structure in which each team plays.The Wolverines' stadium is named for the school, seating nearly 110,000 in the center of town.
For as much as the Rutgers football team has struggled on offense and defense, one area has been producing as much as possible.By default, that has been the special teams unit.A pillar in the Scarlet Knights' brand of football for years now, the role of special teams has had a new meaning in Piscataway in the midst of a three-game losing skid.The Rutgers offense hasn't found the end zone since sophomore backup quarterback Hayden Rettig threw a touchdown pass to junior wide receiver Andre Patton with 13 seconds left in a 49-7 shellacking to then-No. 1 Ohio State on Oct.
Not too long ago, Anthony Cioffi was a 180-pound cornerback thrown into the fire as a true freshman on a historically bad secondary for the Rutgers football team.In the 2013 season, Cioffi and a handful of others in his freshman class were burned by NFL prospects and spread offenses in the Scarlet Knights' lone year in the AAC. They faced the likes of current NFL starting quarterbacks Derek Carr (formerly Fresno State, currently Oakland Raiders), Teddy Bridgewater (formerly Louisville, currently Minnesota Vikings) and Blake Bortles (formerly Central Florida, currently Jacksonville Jaguars). The three first-rounders headlined a year in which Rutgers couldn't catch a break against the pass, surrendering 312 yards per game through the air.Fast-forwarding two years later, Cioffi finds himself in a similar situation now as a junior leader.
As much as they try their best to regurgitate the company line, reality has begun to sink in for members of the Rutgers football team.
Chris Laviano remembers it like it was yesterday.Roughly one year ago, then a wide-eyed redshirt-freshman, Laviano trotted out to the field at Memorial Stadium in the second half of the Rutgers football team's Big Ten road battle at Nebraska.After Gary Nova went down with a knee injury with less than a minute left until halftime, Laviano led Rutgers on offense for the third quarter and beyond in front of 91,088 in Lincoln. The Glen Head, New York, native flashed signs of promise here and there, throwing for 49 yards on 4-of-7 passing and adding 54 yards — with a long of 46 — on five carries rushing, but couldn't provide enough of a punch as then-No. 16 Nebraska ran Rutgers out of the building in a 42-24 rout."I remember we were pretty competitive in the second half and they're a tough group, they're really physical," Laviano said.Much has changed for both parties since that afternoon on Oct.
As the Rutgers football team retreats home from the Midwest after its third straight drubbing to a Big Ten opponent, the Scarlet Knights find themselves lost in a corn maze.With Nebraska (4-6, 2-4) bringing the momentum of their 39-38 upset where it handed then-No. 7 Michigan State its first loss of the season, the Cornhuskers go from on the verge of chaos in Lincoln to being one game closer to reaching the postseason with a bowl game.The Knights are right where the Huskers were about a week ago. With its back against the wall, Rutgers (3-6, 1-5) has one last legitimate shot at getting to its 10th bowl game in the past 11 years when it hosts Nebraska at 3:30 p.m.
For as long as it has been since the Rutgers football team earned its last feeling of triumph by chalking up a win, it's been just as long since the Scarlet Knights were in Piscataway for the weekend.The latter half, at the very least, changes when Rutgers (3-6, 1-5) hosts Nebraska (4-6, 2-4) on Saturday at 3:30 p.m.
Senior captain Keith Lumpkin has started 34 consecutive games for Rutgers at left tackle.