No Steve Longa, no Anthony Cioffi, a running back moved to safety and an in-game injury to Leonte Carroo is not the traditional formula for success at Rutgers.
The story Saturday, however, is not about what Rutgers did not have. The 31-21 victory over Army comes down to the players that came to play.
An young offensive line with 61-pound per player weight advantage steamrolled Army’s undersized defense. Paul James carried the Rutgers offense and more than made up for the mental errors and struggles of an inexperienced defense against the triple option.
Rutgers (4-7, 1-6) fared well defensively against Army. A defense without its leading tackler (Longa) and leading turnover threat (Cioffi) struggled against Army’s select passing attack but held the Black Knights to 261 rushing yards.
Freshman Deonte Roberts filled in for Longa with running back Josh Hicks moved to safety with Cioffi and Kiy Hester out.