Storyline Central: Prep School Additions

Defensive linemen Kenneth Kirksey and Djwany Mera enrolled for spring practice and athlete Tejay Johnson made it three for three with the prep school kids when he enrolled in May for classes. Which members of the trio can make an immediate impact this season?

There was a point where it seemed Kenneth Kirksey, Djwany Mera and Tejay Johnson may not ever make it to Rutgers. All three committed as a part of the Class of 2010, but were not cleared academically and went to prep school.

In their time away from home, Rutgers stuck with all of them and the trio is enrolled at Rutgers and will fight for playing time in training camp three weeks down the road.

Kirksey and Mera, both defensive linemen from Florida, enrolled for spring practice this year, giving themselves legs up over recently arrived freshmen.

The pair performed well in the spring and both started as second teamers in the spring game, showing their progress throughout the campaign. Mera is apparently farther along than Kirksey, however. He made the post-spring two-deep released by coach Greg Schiano and Kirksey did not.

Schiano said all spring that the defensive line consists of Scott Vallone and then everyone else. That means both Mera and Kirksey have major opportunities at playing time alongside Vallone at tackle and could even compete for starting jobs.

Rutgers normally rotates between three or four tackles and both will see time in that rotation.

Johnson, from Egg Harbor Township High School (Egg Harbor Township, N.J.), was not here for the spring and did not receive the benefit of 15 practices with the coaching staff and Scarlet Knights.

That may hurt his chances at early time as a wideout, but enrolling early in May helps his chances of seeing the field this year. Look for Johnson to fight for time on special teams.

No kick returners truly jumped out in the spring to replace Joe Lefeged, making the job up for grabs in training camp. Johnson, who like Miles Shuler is a former New Jersey track star, may fit the mold.

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