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Even after the Michigan State football team lost its three-year starter at quarterback when Kirk Cousins graduated and left for the NFL Draft at the end of the 2011 season, Mark Dantonio pointed to his bench in a next-man-up process.Cousins, now the starting quarterback for the Washington Redskins, left big shoes to fill.
There is no better time than the present.The Rutgers football team has built a reputation for its special teams play since the Greg Schiano era began in 2002. The Scarlet Knights (2-2, 0-1) have been able to rely on consistent play from their placekickers over that span and this season, junior wide receiver Janarion Grant has made a name for himself as one of the premier kick returners in the nation. The Knights have also been known to get their hands on several field goal attempts and punts.Over the last seven seasons, Rutgers has blocked 42 kicks, by far the most in the country, including at least four kicks every year since 2007, according to the team’s media guide.But in 2015,
Junior wide receiver Janarion Grant returned three kicks for touchdowns in the first two games of 2015, but opponents have held him in check since.
Sophomore defensive end Kemoko Turay blocked three kicks in a sensational redshirt-freshman season in 2014. Turay’s block against Michigan helped seal the Knights first Big Ten win.
For the first time this fall, Chris Laviano spent his Saturday watching football instead of playing it.With the Rutgers football team taking its first and only bye week of the season, the sophomore quarterback flipped through the laundry list of college games on the television.One that caught his attention — and with good reason — was the matchup between Purdue and Michigan State.
Sometimes he’ll throw a pass or make a play with his legs that flashes the promise that everyone associated with the Rutgers football team saw in the three-star recruit coming out of Holy Trinity High School on Long Island in 2013.
The relationship between a tight end and starting quarterback requires as much synergy and chemistry as any two positions on the field The tight end allows the quarterback a certain degree of security.
Heading into its first and only bye week of the season, the Rutgers football team finds itself in a unique position.At the end of September, the Scarlet Knights (2-2, 0-1) were able to avoid disaster last Saturday with a 27-14 drubbing of Kansas (0-3) for their first homecoming victory since a 21-20 triumph past Navy on Oct.
Despite becoming the Rutgers football team’s sixth offensive coordinator in as many years, Ben McDaniels calling the plays and designing the schemes at first seemed to be the best way to establish continuity.Following Ralph Friedgen’s resignation after one year on the job in the Scarlet Knights’ inaugural Big Ten season, now-suspended head coach Kyle Flood decided to fill the void by hiring from within — the offensive guru’s apprentice.But roughly one-third of the way through the 2015 season, Rutgers (2-2, 0-1) looks completely reinvented.
He was the sixth-ranked safety in New Jersey coming out of high school, according to rivals.com. The recruiting website regarded the redshirt-freshman to be the No.
Senior linebacker Kaiwan Lewis tracks Kansas running back K'aun Kinner in Rutgers' 27-14 homecoming win over the Jayhawks Saturday. Lewis stuffed the stat sheet, making his first interception for the Knights, to go with six tackles (four solo), two quarterback hurries and a tackle for loss.
Sophomore quarterback Chris Laviano hangs in the pocket and fires a pass in Saturday’s 27-14 bounce back win over Kansas. Despite a pair of interceptions, Laviano completed 18-of-25 for 201 yards and two touchdowns to earn his first-career win as the starting quarterback for Rutgers.
On paper, Chris Laviano is one of the top-five starting quarterbacks in the Big Ten. The sophomore signal-caller earned his first-career victory Saturday, completing his season’s average, 72 percent of his passes in the Rutgers football team’s 27-14 homecoming win over an injury-riddled Kansas team.But in person, Laviano looked lost at times for the Scarlet Knights (2-2, 0-1).The sophomore did rely, heavily, on Rutgers' potent rushing attack, which tallied 312 yards at an average of 5.4 yards per carry, but he wasn't entirely passive in the passing game.The Glen Head, New York, native went 18-of-25 through the air, for 201 yards and two touchdowns to bring his season's total to six touchdowns in three starts. But that's just the box score.
Senior running back Paul James rumbles down the sidelines Saturday at High Point Solutions Stadium. Despite being the third-leading rusher for Rutgers with 57 yards on nine carries, contributing to a Knights ground game that ripped off 312 yards on 58 attempts in the 27-14 homecoming triumph past Kansas.
The key to the game was no secret.In the aftermath of last Saturday’s 28-3 mess of a loss at Penn State, the Rutgers football team knew what had to be done in order to put an end to the nightmare that the past few weeks have been for the program.After the Nittany Lions pounced for 330 yards and four touchdowns on 41 carries last week in Happy Valley, the Rutgers defense was in for an even bigger test with an up-tempo Jayhawks attack known for spreading the ball out and mixing up its looks in the read-option.But the Knights were more than ready for the ground game — on both sides of the ball.Behind a rejuvenated front seven on defense and a refreshed two-headed running backs attack on offense, Rutgers bounced back with a 27-14 homecoming win Saturday afternoon in front of 46,136 at High Point Solutions Stadium.It was the first homecoming win for the Knights since Oct.
Junior free safety Anthony Cioffi, right, leads the Knights in 2015 with two interceptions. Cioffi now has four interceptions for his career.
Junior wide receiver Carlton Agudosi had six grabs for 80 yards against PSU, setting career-highs. He totaled just five catches for 32 yards in 2014.
Fighting through a lower body injury for the sake of his teammates, senior defensive tackle Darius Hamilton hopes to play against Kansas and beyond for Rutgers.
While he has yet to start for the Knights this season, sophomore defensive end Kemoko Turay continues to grow into his role.
Despite an 0-2 record as the starting quarterback, sophomore Chris Laviano was given multiple votes of confidence by his teammates and interim head coach Norries Wilson entering his third-career start.