Warm Up: Five Burning Questions

Spring practice kicks off at Rutgers Tuesday morning with a new head coach, new two-deep and plenty of buzz. Before coach Kyle Flood embarks on his first camp as head coach of the Scarlet Knights, ScarletReport.com is here with the burning questions that need to be answered in the next 15 practices.

For the first time in years, questions other than open position battles surround the Rutgers football program going into spring practice. After 11 years of Greg Schiano, the hiring of Kyle Flood and a new coaching staff bring a different new questions and excitement to the program.

Spring camp kicks off Tuesday morning and runs until the annual scarlet and white game April 28 at High Point Solutions Stadium.

5.) How will the new guys look?

R.J. Dill and Kyle Federico are both expected to have major roles with the program this year. Both begin the spring as second-time players, but neither were brought in to the program to be backups this season. Look for Dill to make a hard push for the starting right tackle spot this spring and for Federico to get every chance to win the place-kicking job in an effort to replace San San Te.

4.) Who will surprise?

With the mass of injuries to key players, many younger Scarlet Knights have the chance to make headlines with solid camps. The starting left tackle, tight end, weakside linebacker and nose tackle are all out for camp, which means players like Keith Lumpkin, Tyler Kroft, Kevin Snyder, Kenneth Kirksey and Marquise Wright will get much needed experience.

3.) Will any position battles be decided?

Position battles do not truly heat up until training camp, but there are rare occasions where one player blows his competition away. With the most competitive battles expected to take place at quarterback between Gary Nova and Chas Dodd and running back between Jawan Jamison and Savon Huggins, one stellar spring or one injury can change everything.

2.) How will the players pick up new schemes?

Coordinators Dave Brock and Robb Smith do not have major changes panned from last year, but will put their own tweaks on play-calling. Brock has the spring to get Nova and Dodd used to his scheme and ready to truly compete for the job this summer.

1.) What is the difference between Kyle Flood and Greg Schiano?

It may sound like the buildup to a good punch line, but this is without question the most important question to be answered this spring. It does not just apply to the players and coaches, but to all of the Rutgers community.

Schiano built Rutgers from laughing stock to legitimate program, but Flood could be the change needed to take things to the next step. Spring will be a time for him to find out what works and what doesn't as a head coach and to further win the trust of his team on the field.

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