BCS Quest: Top 5 Plays of 2012

Rutgers clinches its first BCS bowl berth with a win Thursday at High Point Solutions Stadium vs. Louisville. As a countdown to the event, ScarletReport.com is running a feature a day geared to look at the history of the program, and this story ranks the top 5 plays of the 2012 season.

Rutgers is a win away from its first BCS bowl berth, and getting that win Thursday against Louisville would be one of the bench mark moments in the history of the nation's oldest program.

As the showdown for a BCS berth approaches, ScarletReport.com looks at the top plays from the 2012 season.

5. Harrison's TD grab at Arkansas
Rutgers was reeling. The Scarlet Knights wasted most of a 28-13 lead and only a failed two-point conversion kept the Razorbacks from tying it after Cobi Hamilton's 80-yard touchdown catch make it 28-26.

However, on a second-and-5 from its own 40, quarterback Gary Nova found Mark Harrison in man-to-man coverage, and the two hooked up for a 60-yard score with 7:20 to play and put Rutgers ahead 35-26.
Reason for inclusion: This is the play that turned a good start into something much more. The Scarlet Knights won on SEC soil, which is never easy.

4. Jamison's touchdown at Temple
Rutgers was awful on offense in the first half, but still was within striking distance. Temple was yet to fall apart in the secondary, but Rutgers landed a huge blow when running back Jawan Jamison took a short pass from Nova, made one juke and picked up two big blocks down the field for a 32-yard touchdown.

It was also the moment Rutgers seized control of the game and took a 14-10 lead, and set the stage for the blowout.
Reason for inclusion: The game's outcome was uncertain, and it not only gave the Scarlet Knights the lead, it cut out Temple's heart in the process.

3. Harrison's touchdown at Cincinnati
It was a defensive battle, but Harrison and Nova found a way to hook up for a huge play midway through the second quarter. On a first-and-10 play from the Rutgers 29-yard line, Harrison got behind the Cincinnati secondary afr a big catch, then avoided a tackle and raced for a 71-yard touchdown.

It gave the Scarlet Knights a 7-0 lead, and a comfort level in which they were playing to remain in first place in a venue Rutgers rarely plays well in.
Reason for inclusion: The play was the winning score and put Rutgers in place to earn at least a share of its first Big East title, and put the Scarlet Knights in position to earn its first BCS bowl berth.

2. Fourth down stop at Cincinnati
Rutgers led 7-0 at the half, but on the Bearcats' first possession they moved to the Rutgers 7-yard line and faced a fourth-and-1. Following a timeout, Cincinnati went for it and linebacker Khaseem Greene got penetration and tackle running back George Winn for a 1-yard loss.

Cincinnati didn't get back inside Rutgers' 25-yard line until the final drive, which led to a field goal with 11 seconds left of a 10-3 Rutgers win.
Reason for inclusion: If Cincinnati gets a touchdown on the drive, it is tied 7-7 and Rutgers could lose control of the game. Instead, it was Rutgers' biggest win of the season.

1. Harmon's scoop and score
Syracuse was moving in for the go-ahead score early in the third quarter and was lining up for a short field. But Jamal Merrell broke through the middle of the line of scrimmage and blocked the kick. It then got better for the Scarlet Knights as Duron Harmon picked up the ball and raced 75 yards for a touchdown and give Rutgers a 14-7 lead. Reason for inclusion: Syracuse was one of the best teams in the Big East and is much better playing from ahead, and the play stunned the Orange for much of the second half.

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