Schedule Scouting: Toughest Places to Play

Rutgers is three weeks from reporting to training camp and the formal start of the 2013 season. ScarletReport.com's in-depth look at the 2013 schedule breaks down the toughest road games of the year.

Rutgers plays five road games in 2013, with some significantly tougher than others. ScarletReport.com ranks the games based on the biggest challenges for the Scarlet Knights.

5.) Gerald Ford Stadium -- The Oct. 5 clash with SMU is billed as "Family Weekend" for the Mustangs in an effort to get as many fans as possible into the 32,000-seat stadium. The biggest challenge for Rutgers comes in setting up travel to the first-time destination and being ready to turn things around and battle Louisville five days later.

4.) Bright House Networks Stadium -- Rutgers should have plenty of its Florida fanbase in attendance and lots of family for its players from the area. UCF has a developed, senior-heavy offense and a gigantic, 50,000 students enrolled for undergraduate studies. UCF is quietly one of the biggest universities in the country and getting students to a Thursday night game on campus in November is a lot easier when both teams are winning.

3.) Jim Sweeny Field -- The time zone change and 10 p.m. EST kick represent problems for Kyle Flood and the Scarlet Knights. Traveling more than 2,800 miles to open the season, Rutgers is set to face a "whited out" 41,000 fans looking to build on a 9-4 season in 2012. Rutgers is going into a hostile, road environment to start the season. The Scarlet Knights won their season-opener on the road last season, but the Super Dome and Tulane fan base three days after a hurricane simple do not compare to Fresno.

2.) Rentschler Field -- For some reason, the old airport grounds and home site for Connecticut has been brutal for Rutgers in recent years. Success does not come easy for Rutgers at the home of the Huskies. Take away one epic catch by Tim Brown and the Scarlet Knights have been straight-up bad on this field in the last three meetings. Laying an egg in Greg Schiano's final regular-season game with Rutgers cost him a Big East championship and the Huskies would love to do it again with Rutgers on its way out the door and UConn stuck in the AAC. The fan base does not turn out for games so far from campus, especially when the Huskies are losing. But for some reason, Rutgers has trouble getting things going at Rentschler.

1.) Papa John's Cardinal Stadium -- Playing Sugar Bowl champ Louisville is tough enough on its own, but Rutgers has to do it on the road just five days after playing SMU in Dallas. The only Rutgers win at Louisville in the last decade came in the ugly Steve Kragthorpe era. A Mark Harrison drop highlighted the last trip to Louisville. Though the game-day environment itself is not intense, a Thursday night game with first place in the AAC possibly on the line should heat up the fan base. The site of Gary Nova's first loss as a starting


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