Rutgers Stuns Army in Overtime, 23-20

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- For the second straight week freshman quarterback Chas Dodd rallied Rutgers in the fourth quarter, this time leading the Scarlet Knights to a 23-20 overtime win against Army. Rutgers won despite having minus-1 rushing yards and Dodd being sacked eight times, but the excitement was tempered by defensive tackle Eric LeGrand's neck injury.

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – The was euphoria from a 93-yard game-tying drive in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter, followed immediately by the shock of defensive tackle Eric LeGrand motionless on the turf for seven minutes.

There was the absolute joy of Joe Martinek's game-winning 1-yard touchdown run in overtime, followed by the sickly and empty feeling in the stomach afterward as coach Greg Schiano cut his post-game press conference short to head to Hackensack Medical Center.

In the short term, Rutgers' stunning rally from 14 points down in the fourth quarter to beat Army 23-20 in overtime Saturday in front of 41,292 at the New Meadowlands Stadium was able to sprinkle some smiles through the locker room.

The long term question is whether there will be reason to celebrate a win in which Rutgers ran for minus-1 yard and suffered eight sacks.

"If we could respect his family and his (LeGrand') privacy right now, it would mean a lot to me and his family," Schiano said. "As soon as it's appropriate, I'll get word to you."

LeGrand was injured on the kickoff after Mark Harrison's game-tying 16-yard pass from quarterback Chas Dodd capped an 8-play, 93-yard drive to make it 17-17 with 5:16 left in the fourth quarter.

He collided with an Army player covering the kick, and was only moving his head for a brief moment. The medical team sprinted onto the field, as did Schiano. He left the player's side only to talk to LeGrand's mother, Karen, who was escorted onto the field.

"It's all tough stuff, yes," Schiano said. "When you coach these kids, they're your kids. That is the thing I don't know if everybody gets. It's not pro football. Those are your kids. You're raising them. You're finishing the job for their parents, so it's tough."

After resuming play Rutgers forced an Army punt and was driving for a potential game-winning field goal as Dodd drove the Scarlet Knights to Army 28 with a completion to Mohamed Sanu.

But after Dodd took a 2-yard loss on second down to move the ball into the middle of the field for a field goal attempt, Army called a timeout.

Rutgers then was called for delay of game, and afterward Dodd said it was because someone had his helmet and he couldn't get on the field in time to snap the ball. A 10-yard sack on the next play pushed Rutgers out of field goal range.

"At the end of the game, we fouled that thing up," Schiano said. "I've made a lot of really good, time management decisions over ten years, really good ones that have won games for us. That one could have lost the game for us."

"That's my job to take control, and that was a bone head move by me. And those kids played their way into winning that game and I'm proud of them. But that sucker's on me if we lose that game."

After holding Army to a 26-yard field goal to open overtime, Dodd threaded a clutch 6-yard pass to receiver Keith Stroud for a first down to the Army 3-yard line. A Martinek run brought the ball to the 1-yard line, and he scored on the next play as Rutgers (4-2) won its second straight come-from-behind fourth quarter win.

But Dodd said there was no change in his fourth-quarter demeanor.

"I think it's just the same thing, staying focused and knowing what you have to do and going out there and leading the team," Dodd said. "That's what I'm trying to do and I feel like I'm doing pretty well at just going out there and leading the team to a victory."

Dodd finished 18 of 30 for 251 yards and an interception. Rutgers, with the eight sacks factored in, rushed 35 times for minus-1 yard.

The Scarlet Knights were also penalized 12 times for 63 yards, but benefitted from an uncharacteristic undisciplined Army team that committed eight penalties for 84 yards, which led to five Rutgers first downs.

"We all love Eric and he's in our prayers," Rutgers defensive tackle Charlie Noonan said. "We went out and played for Eric. We had to stay in the moment, stay in the now and realize that it was the Army game and that was still right here."

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