Freshman Focus: Desmon Peoples

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – caught up with former Archbishop Wood (Warminster, Pa.) speedster Desmon Peoples at Rutgers football media day to discuss his arrival and first week in the program

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Recruiting is all about relationships, and for true freshman running back Desmon Peoples, he only ever felt comfortable with one football program.

Peoples was one of many freshmen that stayed true to their Rutgers pledge after the wholesale changes to the coaching staff. He pointed to the atmosphere around the team as a deciding factor that caused him to never look elsewhere as National Signing Day approached.

"It's just how comfortable the coaches and players made me feel," Peoples said. "The players were a big part of it. You felt at home, you felt like you were with family."

The message of family was a dynamic that remained unchanged in the Rutgers football culture following the promotion of offensive line coach Kyle Flood to head coach in late January.

"It's very important," Peoples said about the mantra. "Because if you don't have a good bond with your teammates, you can't play well together."

Playing well has come as second nature for Peoples, who enrolled at Rutgers just 9 months removed from winning the Pennsylvania Class AAA title for Archbishop Wood alongside now-Rutgers freshman center, Brandon Arcidiacono. Playing alongside a high school teammate and joining an offense that boasts a bevy of potentially dynamic playmakers has helped Peoples to make the adjustment from high school.

"It means a lot," Peoples said. "I'm close with a couple of players on the team and it means a lot to me. It just makes everything so much more comfortable, and it just makes our team that much of a better bond."

Flood has yet to mention Peoples as someone that could see the field this year, but had a solid showing the first of three scrimmages. Playing behind sophomores Jawan Jamison and Savon Huggins, the learning experience of a redshirt year may work in his favor.

"All of the backs are teaching me good things about keeping it north and south and [about] things in the playbook that I need to know like pass protections and all that," Peoples said. "So it's coming together pretty good."

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