Sunday Notebook: Flood Confident in Nova

The morning after his first career loss as a head coach, Rutgers' Kyle Flood spoke with members of the media about the 35-23 stunner against Kent State. Flood addressed the transition into the bye week after a disappointing loss and Gary Nova's six-interception performance.

Rutgers coach Kyle Flood has no thoughts of changing his starting quarterback. Sophomore starter Gary Nova threw six interceptions yesterday against Kent State in a brutal homecoming loss, but there is no loss of confidence from the coaching staff.

"Gary Nova is our quarterback," Flood said. "I think even though it wasn't the most enjoyable of learning experiences, this will be an excellent learning experience for him as he watches that film and goes back through it. It's never fun or enjoyable to learn from a loss, but you have to do that. Great players are able to do that. When you have a game like this, there are reasons why."

Through all of the offensive struggles, however, Nova never lost his composure, Flood said.

"Having been the person on the sidelines with Gary, I would not use the word rattled in any way with Gary," Flood said. "I thought Gary was composed the entire game."

Nova did not play well, but does not deserve as much of the blame as he is getting, Flood said.

"I didn't feel at any point that Gary had a meltdown," Flood said. "… When you really examine it on offense, there's a lot of reasons other than Gary why those interceptions were the case and why the turnovers were the case. I felt Gary was the guy, at all times in that game, to bring us back. Even until the end there, we were in a situation where we had the ball and we ultimately fumbled it."

Moving Forward

Rutgers will move on from the loss at 7-1 and 4-0 in the Big East. Heading into the final bye week of the season, the Scarlet Knights check in at No. 25 in the USA Today coaches poll.

But ask Flood and there are not a lot of positives to take out of what happened on homecoming for his program.

"I don't see any silver lining in it," Flood said. I think, every game we go into, we want to compete to win the game. That's our goal and that's our goal as a team. And as I said, it doesn't matter to me how we win a game. … It really has no consequence to me as long as we have one more point than our opponent. We were not able to do that yesterday so we are disappointed."

Hurricane Sandy

Rutgers plans to take it light until Tuesday regardless of weather, but wants to practice Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Flood and his staff have plans set, but are aware that anything can change with a hurricane on its way to Piscataway and the rest of the Garden State.

"What we're going to do as a staff is we're going to meet tomorrow afternoon and see where we are," Flood said. "Hour to hour, these things can change, so we have a plan in place to practice Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday similarly to what we did the first bye week in terms of practicing and lifting. Certainly with the safety of the players and the situation going on on campus, we're going to have to reassess all that stuff Monday afternoon and kind of go from there."

Facing the triple option attack of Army out of the bye week, Rutgers will use some of its time off to prepare for the uniqueness of the Black Knights and their schemes.

"We will spend a little more time preparing for Army because of how unique they are," Flood said … "That will really be the only difference [during the bye week]."


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