Associate Sports Editor
Before the Rutgers football team's season began, the Scarlet Knights' running back room declared itself one of the best groups of backs in not only the Big Ten, but the nation. With four different running backs that all bring something different to the table, it was hard to take a side against the Knights' backfield.
Marcus Applefield does not hail from New Jersey. In fact, the redshirt-freshman offensive lineman might be a polar opposite in comparison to a the tri-state area native.
Last season, Kemoko Turay leaped up to block the game-winning field goal against Michigan as a redshirt-freshman defensive lineman. When he reached the ground, his popularity exploded and spectators began to recognize his freakish talents.
Walking into his first Monday press conference as the interim head coach of the Rutgers football team, Norries Wilson wiped the sweat that was beading from his forehead. All 6-foot-6 inches of his former Big Ten offensive lineman build stood behind the podium and he answered questions with bass in his voice that bellowed — Wilson did not need a microphone. The assistant head coach never thought he would be in this position with the Scarlet Knights, but that’s what the situation called for. Things were a little different this Monday for him.
With senior wide receiver Leonte Carroo collecting three touchdowns on three catches, a quarterback controversy coming to a close and an explosion of offense from the Rutgers football team in a 63-13 win against Norfolk State, it’s easy to forget about who scored the first touchdown for the Scarlet Knights. The Knight who did might be one of the biggest mysteries to anyone other than someone on Rutgers coaching staff and players.
With temperatures reaching the mid-90s and thunderstorm sirens signaling a storm was within five miles, head football coach Kyle Flood addressed the media following the conclusion of Wednesday’s practice.
One of the lingering on-field questions for the Rutgers football team entering the season opener this past weekend against Norfolk State was the status of the running backs corps and how four backs listed as co-starters would work together. Senior running back Paul James figured to be the one earning the bulk of the carries as a returning starter.
When the Amateur Wrestling News publication announced its 2015 All-Rookie Team April 28, only one member of the Rutgers wrestling team was selected. With three newcomers to the Scarlet Knights lineup in the 2014-2015 season, the lone Rutgers wrestler that stood out was redshirt-freshman 141-pounder Anthony Ashnault. Along with the national recognition for being one of the top-30 rookies in the country, The Daily Targum named Ashnault Rookie of the Year. Ashnault started out the 2014 season as well as anyone could have expected.
The Major League Baseball season began at the beginning of April and still has a way to go for postseason implications to matter for each team.
The issues piled up for the Rutgers baseball team Wednesday against Villanova when the team traveled to Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania. The Scarlet Knights had previously won five out of the last five games against the Wildcats and sought to keep the streak going against their former Big East Conference rival –– but that didn’t happen. The Knights (15-28-1, 5-10) dropped their only midweek series between the Seton Hall series and the Penn State series.
SOMERSET, N.J. — Things did not go as planned for the Rutgers baseball team in the final game of its three-game series against Seton Hall this past weekend. After winning the opening game of the rivalry series 3-2 at Seton Hall and winning a 4-2 ballgame in the second battle at Bainton Field Saturday, the Scarlet Knights clinched the series and headed to TD Bank Ballpark on Sunday looking to crack the brooms out for a sweep. With a shortened outing from struggling sophomore right-hander Gaby Rosa and a lack of scoring late in the game, the Knights (15-27-1, 5-10) dropped the closing game of the series, 16-5, against the Pirates (20-17). Rosa didn't reach the third inning, setting the bar for his shortest outing of the season.
Before practice on Thursday at Bainton Field, the Rutgers baseball team was debating who the better team was this season — the New York Mets or the New York Yankees. The hotbed of the discussion stemmed from the Mets winning 10th game in a row while the Yankees were coming off of a 13-4 win over the Tigers on Wednesday. Junior left-hander Howie Brey, a devout Mets fan, argued with senior first baseman Joe D’Annunzio, a die-hard Yankees fan, for 20 minutes before practice until head coach Joe Litterio had enough. “Go out to left field to talk about that kind of stuff,” Litterio said, annoyed while preparing practice plans in the dugout on the first base side. That demand from the skipper only relocated the conversation, but it did not end it.
When the Rutgers baseball team wrapped up its final game of the weekend series against Michigan State, there was a sense of urgency. In ninth place of the conference, the Scarlet Knights were on the bubble of the Big Ten Tournament and needed a good series to become postseason eligible. After a sweep at the hands of the Spartans, head coach Joe Litterio lit a fire under his team with a message of winning midweek games made clear. Rutgers wanted momentum heading into its conference series in two weeks against Penn State and that’s exactly what true freshman pitcher John O’Reilly gave the Knights on the mound Tuesday in the 7-1 win against Wagner. O’Reilly went seven innings for the Knights (13-26-1, 5-10) and held the Seahawks scoreless in his outing.