Warm Up: Cornerbacks Position Analysis

That's right. It's March. And March in Piscataway means spring football practice is right around the corner. To help get ready for Kyle Flood's first spring camp as Rutgers football head coach, ScarletReport.com is here to warm up the football talks by looking at a variety of different topics within the program. Today, we break down the cornerbacks.

The cornerback position as a whole made major improvements last season and finally started showing signs of what Rutgers used to look like with the McCourty twins.

All of the key players are back, but the coaching is totally different from last season. Greg Schiano played a key role in coaching and play-calling for cornerbacks and first-year Rutgers coach Jeff Hafley is also gone to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

There is no set position coach for the defensive backs, but multiple coaches including defensive coordinator Robb Smith are expected to work with the position.

With the major names back, spring will be more about assimilating the position to new coaching and play-calling, with the younger talents learning the position.

First Teamers

Logan Ryan, Brandon Jones and Marcus Cooper are all veterans at this point and should be leaders on defense. Ryan and Jones will likely continue as starters and are both instant contenders for First-Team All-Big East selection. With an improved season, Ryan could even be in the mix for player of the year.

Converted running back Mason Robinson should be back for a sixth season, but his availability for the spring is unknown. Look for Robinson to play his biggest role on special teams.

Keep an Eye on

Redshirt freshman Tejay Johnson has the potential to earn major playing time. After moving to corner late in training camp last year, the tall, athletic defensive back will be one of the top young players to watch in action this spring. Johnson's mix of size and speed give him the potential to be an impact cornerback.

Youngsters Gareef Glashen and Johnathan Aiken should also expect a heavy workload in the spring. Rutgers coach Kyle Flood knows what he has in his older cornerbacks, but Glashen and Aiken can both provide significant depth if they make improvements this spring.

Glashen battled injuries during his first two seasons at Rutgers but is expected to be healthy for camp. Aiken saw minimal action as a true freshman.

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