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With senior Gary Nova officially competing to win back the starting quarterback job, the Rutgers football team is already feeling the disadvantages of doling reps to five players at the position. Redshirt freshman Chris Laviano, sophomore Blake Rankin, junior Mike Bimonte and redshirt freshman walk-on Devin Ray evenly split reps with Nova yesterday on the first day of spring practice.
What does a defense, whose secondary allowed a school record 4,056 passing yards this past season, do to improve entering the Big Ten?It aims to makes changes in the back four during spring practice. The Rutgers football team will use this time to improve a secondary that was widely inexperienced a season ago.
Senior Gary Nova, competing to start at quarterback, will not be available to the media until after the seventh spring practice.
Sophomore cornerback Nadir Barnwell said he enjoys playing in Joe Rossi’s defense because of the aggression they play with.
Brandon Coleman participated only in positional workouts in yesterday’s pro day, running routes and catching passes.
Rutgers head football coach Kyle Flood announced yesterday the hiring of former Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive assistant Ben McDaniels as the team’s new wide receivers coach. McDaniels is the brother of former Denver Broncos head coach and current New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. The hiring fills the final vacancy for a full-time assistant coach on Flood’s staff.
Former Rutgers football wide receiver Brandon Coleman received an invitation Friday to the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine. The combine invites over 300 of the nation’s top college football players. Coleman will perform in front of representatives from all 32 NFL teams Feb. 22-25 in Indianapolis, Ind.
Were you surprised by the excessive number of high school decommits from Rutgers football with the Big Ten on the horizon? You shouldn’t have been. Recruits like to know the direction a program is moving in, a multitude of issues this past season clouded the future of the Scarlet Knights. It started soon after Rutgers’ pivotal conference loss Oct. 24 at Louisville, which thwarted nearly all hope the Knights had of making a BCS bowl for the first time in school history.
It was strange for offensive lineman recruit Marcus Applefield to see deer standing around with no guns pointed at them as he walked into the Hale Center. “There were about eight surrounding a tree. I’m like, ‘Wow, those deer are so lucky,’” the Weeki Wachee, Fla., native said Jan. 27 at the Rutgers football team’s introductory media event for five Rutgers early enrollees.
A few months ago, this was supposed to be the day the Rutgers football team officially announced arguably its best recruiting class in school history. ESPN ranked the Scarlet Knights’ group of 22 verbally committed high school prospects 18th nationally in early November. Rivals rated five of Rutgers’ commits as four-star recruits.
A class full of only two- and three-star recruits wouldn’t be as big of a deal if that were the recruiting class the Rutgers football team intended. Head coach Kyle Flood defended his recruiting class, in which 13 players de-committed, with an optimistic outlook that Rutgers is looking forward to. It also mattered little to Flood that none of the recruits hold a four-star rating, according to Rivals.
Darius Hamilton was one of several at defensive tackle to produce as a true freshman.
Head coach Kyle Flood announced Rutgers’ newest high school recruiting class yesterday, which Rivals.com ranks 57th nationally. The Knights hauled 26 total players, including a transfer and five early enrollees for the spring.
Although the Rutgers football team has new coordinators, there won’t be significant philosophical changes, said head coach Kyle Flood yesterday via the coordinators’ introductory teleconference. Offensive coordinator Ralph Friedgen, whose hiring the Scarlet Knights announced Friday, emphasized rushing and passing success.
With National Signing Day on Wednesday, Rutgers head football coach Kyle Flood announced Friday the filling of three coaching vacancies. Ralph Friedgen, most recently Maryland’s head coach from 2001 to 2010, will become the Scarlet Knights’ fifth offensive coordinator in five seasons after former coach Ron Prince left the program Jan. 18 to become an assistant head coach for the Detroit Lions.
The first cut is the deepest, but for the Rutgers football team, the 11th recruit to decommit might hurt them worst of all. Unanimous four-star wide-receiver recruit Saeed Blacknall out of Manalapan (N.J.) High School, chose to attend Penn State, breaking his verbal commitment to be a Scarlet Knight, Sunday night via his twitter account. “I have officially committed to THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY #WeARE,” Blacknall tweeted.
The Rutgers football defense loses little when it comes to statistical production for next year. But after allowing more yards than any defense in school history, the unit must repair its identity. The young defense is littered with potential breakout players. Spring and training camp will help determine who might take their game to the next level or whether most of the young talent is still overmatched in college.
Sophomore defensive tackle Darius Hamilton appears primed for a breakout season next year after recording 3.5 sacks in his last four games as a sophomore.
Eric LeGrand has continued to inspire fans around the country with steady progress in his fight against paralysis. He received the Jimmy V Perseverance Award at the 2012 ESPYS and most recently had his No. 52 jersey retired at the Rutgers football team’s home opener Sept. 14. Now LeGrand has one more accomplishment to add to his perseverance. The former defensive tackle confirmed on Twitter yesterday that he completed his degree at the University.
The Rutgers football team will not lose much talent on offense, but it faces questions at key positions.For instance, uncertainty at quarterback is not the best way to enter the Big Ten. Rutgers also continues its carousel of new offensive coordinators when it hires one to take over for Ron Prince. Here are The Daily Targum’s projected offensive starters for the 2014 season: