Dark Knights Rise

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Pandemonium returned to Piscataway Saturday night when Rutgers stormed the field after its first Big Ten victory. A blocked field goal by the Scarlet Knights preserved a 26-24 victory behind 404 passing yards from Gary Nova.

This is what happens when the good Gary Nova shows up for Rutgers.

The Scarlet Knights needed a big game from their senior captain to have any chance at beating Michigan. And 404 passing yards and three touchdowns later, Nova became the king of the night in Piscataway.

“When I got to the point where I knew we could take a knee, it's a little overwhelming," said head coach Kyle Flood. "I'd be a little disingenuous to tell you it's not."

A sold out crowd held its breath as Michigan lined up for a 56-yard field goal. The eruption that ensued likely reached Manhattan as defensive end Kemoko Turay blocked the kick, and crushed Brady Hoke’s hopes at a bounce back.

“The best part about déjà vu is you know you’ve been there before,” said defensive tackle Darius Hamilton in reference to the Penn State loss. “You know exactly how to treat it when it comes along. I think a lot of our guys kept our composure…. We stuck together strong and we were able to come up with the stop.”

The win for Rutgers (5-1, 1-1) pushes Rutgers within one game of bowl eligibility in its first Big Ten season, and gives Flood his signature win.

The Rutgers defense swarmed its way to a solid performance against the Wolverines despite being seriously banged up. Rutgers held standout receiver Devin Funchess to five catches and 71 yards. The mobile Devin Gardner, who played the entire game, threw for 178 yards on 13-of-22 passing.

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