The spring semester approaches its conclusion for Rutgers in the classroom, and is already over on the field.
Before the players enjoy a short break before summer workouts, Scarlet Report examines five offensive players who rose their stock value during spring camp.
5. Quarterback Chris Laviano -- Laviano’s stock is up because he remains ahead of Hayden Rettig in an ongoing position battle. This one is far from over, but Laviano started with the first team at practice one and remains there after practice No. 15.
Offensive coordinator Ben McDaniels did not ask for many high-risk throws, so that will be the next step forward in an ongoing position battle.
4. Running back Justin Goodwin -- A forgotten man after freshmen stole the show in the Detroit Quick Lane Bowl, Goodwin put himself back in the conversation during spring camp. Projected starters Josh Hicks and Paul James both missed time in spring and so did Desmon Peoples. Goodwin took advantage.
Goodwin followed his blockers well. He displayed better ball security than sophomore Robert Martin. Although the running back room is a full one, Goodwin made a case for more carries in training camp. Don’t forget, the Madison (N.J.) product proved he has a dynamic side in 2013’s SMU victory.
3. Offensive guard Tariq Cole -- Cole transformed his body from a mobile bowling ball to an even quicker and stronger offensive lineman during his first year in the Rutgers program. Now a physically impressive 320-pounder, the red-shirt freshman received a huge spring workload at guard.
Cole’s 2015 role likely depends on what coach Kyle Flood does at center between Chris Muller, Derrick Nelson and Dorian Miller. Flood said he is open to seven or eight linemen in the 2015 rotation, however, and Cole made himself one of those men.
2. Wide receiver Carlton Agudosi -- Why isn’t the spring’s most productive player on top of the list? Agudosi’s stock can only rise so high while he sits behind what will be the best statistical receiver in Rutgers history.
Agudosi flourished while Carroo rested a lower body injury. His hands were more consistent than in any other Rutgers camp, and made him a big play threat with both co-starters at quarterback. Rutgers has to keep Agudosi involved when Carroo returns.
1. Right tackle J.J. Denman -- Forget the whole “most improved offensive player,” honors for Denman. Congratulations are in order, but spring awards don’t often translate into playing time.
What translates to playing time, however, is consistency. Denman from nearby Fairless Hills (Pa.) Pennsbury was Mr. Consistency during spring. Denman anchored an offensive line that battled injuries at almost every other spot. He worked as a sixth man last season, and evolves into a full-time starter after Taj Alexander’s departure. Denman has room for improvement against a speed rush, but solidified himself as a starter in spring.