Michael Dare is not on his way to Rutgers with any plans of sitting on the bench. The Elmwood Park (N.J.) quarterback and first commitment in the 2015 class plans to compete immediately in an undecided position battle.
“I’m approaching it like I’m not an underdog, like I’m not a freshman,” said Dare, who committed to Rutgers during a 2013 summer camp. “I’m going to act like I’ve been there before. I’m not going to step down to anyone. I’m not going to let someone else dictate where I stand. I’m going to work hard for everything.”
Dare enrolls at Rutgers in less than two weeks, where he begins the summer as an understudy to Laviano, Rettig and Giovanni Rescigno.
“I can learn from all of them, but especially Chris,” Dare said. “He’s been there for three years. I’m going to learn from him about getting ready. There’s so much I can learn from him. He’ll be a great help during my freshman year when I’m learning the offense.”
Dare earned his Rutgers offer when he impressed offensive coordinator Ron Prince at a summer camp – the last multi-day Rutgers sleepaway camp.
Since the camp and Dare’s commitment, he watched two offensive coordinator changes under Flood.
“All of these changes have been rough, but I feel like everyone handled it well,” Dare said. “Coach Prince was great when he was there. Coach [Ralph] Friedgen was a good guy. I’ve known coach McDaniels ever since he was hired. We know each other well, so that’s an upside. As a player, it’s tough to learn new offenses, but coach [Ben] McDaniels said he isn’t going to change a lot.”
When Dare arrives on campus at the end of June, he immediately jumps into workouts and 7-on-7 action with the rest of the roster. He is specifically eager to build bonds with his future receivers and offensive linemen.
“I think the receivers we have are very strong,” Dare said. “Look at the end of last year where a lot of receivers that weren’t making a lot of catches stepped up. I feel like they’re going to grow right by Leonte Carroo. He’s just a receiver that I can’t wait to throw to. He’s obviously going to the NFL. I feel like we’ll be doing great things up front with our offensive line too.”
Dare spends his final days as a high school student in the gym. He works out with fellow Rutgers commit Nakia Griffin, and follows the workout plans that Rutgers sent following National Signing Day.
“I literally have zero time to myself,” Dare said. “I have maybe two hours at night for homework and to relax, and the rest is getting ready. I’m working out hard, throwing two or three times a week. I’m going to be ready, as ready as I can for camp. I don’t want to come in like I’m the new kid.”