Saturday Schiano, Part I: Lots of Dodd

The morning after Rutgers' thrilling 27-24 come-from-behind win against Connecticut brought questions about the Scarlet Knights' quarterback situation next week against Army. Rutgers coach Greg Schiano addressed it, and also spoke about some of the many things freshman Chas Dodd did in throwing for 322 yards and two scores.

The morning after Rutgers freshman quarterback Chas Dodd led a stirring late fourth-quarter comeback in a 27-24 win against Connecticut, Scarlet Knights coach Greg Schiano wasn't willing to discuss the quarterback plans for next week's game against Army.

Instead, Schiano said he will talk with his staff, and also get a report on Tom Savage's injured right hand before addressing the quarterback situation.

"We've been in since early this morning and we're working on Army right now and they're different defensively and offensively so it's a tall order," Schiano said. "Right now we haven't gotten into all (the quarterback talk) and as we make some decisions going forward I'll be sure to let everyone know.''

Dodd completed 18 of 29 for 322 yards and two touchdowns, and showed tremendous poise in the pocket.

Savage, meanwhile, threw a handful of passes in the pregame and felt significant pain. Schiano said an MRI was taken, and the staff was assured Savage wouldn't do any more damage by throwing to the level of pain he can tolerate.

"Tom was in a lot of pain, but he went down and warmed up, so in case we needed him, he could throw it," Schiano said. "He threw it actually pretty well, but you could see afterward he was in a lot of pain.

"They're going to continue to treat that hand as much as they can with the trainer's and doctors, and we'll know more next week."

But if Savage and Dodd are both available, would Schiano be willing to have the duo share time?

"I'm just going to hold on all that stuff," Schiano said. "I really need to do some things here internally. So, I'm going to wait on all that stuff until we make some decisions."

There is also the specter of whether Savage is still available to red-shirt if the hand injury does not improve.

"Good question," Schiano said. "I'm not sure. I haven't even thought about that."

Moving the pocket

One of the difference with Dodd at quarterback was Rutgers' ability and willingness to move the pocket.

"I think one thing with Chas is he's an accurate passer, and he's an accurate passer on the move, so some of the stuff that we did moving the pocket, I think fits his strengths," Schiano said. "He's a very good pocket passer, but accuracy, when you're moving …it's always good to move the launch point as long as you can still deliver the ball accurate, and that's the reason we felt that was a good thing to do this week.

"We also knew that they would be pinning their ears back. As you saw, as the game went on, the pressure index went up and up and up. They tried to come after him."

Dodd was sacked four times and avoided the rush on several other occasions.

"I certainly am impressed with the way he prepared and then the way he came out and played," Schiano said. "I just feel that he has a maturity about him and he prepared the right way and kept the right state of mind and throughout that game. He's done it before, maybe not at the Division I college level, but he comes from a real big-time high school football program where there's a lot of attention on that program.

"It's very much like a college program and he ran the show there for three years, and led his team to state championships. As I've said before, I think he's a guy that's a little bit more mature than maybe his age when it comes to playing this game and leading an offense. I was pleased."

Finally, big plays

Dodd connected on the 52-yard touchdown pass to Mark Harrison with 3:53 to play to tie it 24-24, then hit Jeremy Deering on a 45-yard pass with a minute left to set up the game-winning field goal.

They were a pair of welcomed throws for a number of reasons.

"They were the same calls we've been making. It was big-time execution," Schiano said. "We had thrown 16 balls down the field this season and come up empty on all of them. You don't have to hit too many of those for it to change the complexion of a game and (the Deering catch) certainly was a big play in that game.''

Pump and go

Not only did Dodd look off receivers and go through his progressions, but he also used the pump fake well in freezing safeties. On the touchdown to Harrison, Dodd did it again with a pump fake on a swing pass to Jordan Thomas.

"Those are complimentary plays," Schiano said. "We had run that flare so many times to Jordan (Thomas) effectively so it was a heck of a pump fake and a great throw."

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