No. 23 Rutgers (4-0, 1-0) enters next week's Connecticut game with even more momentum and expectations than last year and fifth-year senior Tim Wright does not want to see history repeat itself.
"That game has always been in the back of our heads, just remembering that if we won that game, we could have won the Big East championship," Wright said. "But you know things happen for a reason. We're just looking forward now. The following week, having the Connecticut game here, we're just very excited for it."
The Connecticut "blackout" game will have extra motivation, but it does not change any preparation, Wright said.
"We want to remember some of the things that happened last year in that game, but basically we've got a new coaching staff now," he said. "We've got a new mentality. We're just looking forward to going ahead."
"Coach [Kyle Flood] always preaches that success is the biggest enemy," Wright said. "I feel like going into practice we already knew that and he did a great job of telling the older guys, telling the captains to keep the younger guys motivated because they can't stray off."
Wright credited Flood and the assistant coach's spring and offseason work as the key contributors to an undefeated start to the 2012 season.
"In the offseason, we didn't have anything yet," Wright said. "We were just working hard and just focusing on our goals. Basically, just telling them we are 4-0 right now. We're ranked right now, but just remember what got us there and that's going to keep us going."
In his final season, Wright has been the biggest factor in replacing departed wide receiver Mohamed Sanu. The Wall Township, N.J., native leads Rutgers in receiving with 18 catches for 228 yards.
As Wright puts it, he is trying to lead by example.
"I really feel that's important," he said. "Being the captain of a team, you're a captain for a reason, not only on the field but off the field as well. I feel like if you can have success on and off the field, that's a great leader. Guys will follow. Just having somebody lead by action and contribute to the team statistic-wise is great for the younger guys to look forward to and great for the team moving forward."
Having a quarterback on the money does not hurt either, Wright said.
"Making those throws and us completing them has definitely added to his confidence," Wright said of Nova, Big East Offensive Player of the Week. "I feel like he's trusting it more week in and week out, watching a little more film on it. He's seeing the mistakes that we made on a certain route or maybe mistakes that he had made, like he can correct and throw a little better or to a different spot."