Rutgers gained ground Saturday with four-star Passaic (N.J.) Tech offensive lineman Carter Warren after coach Chris Ash impressed on junior day.
Warren visited Rutgers for the first time since its coaching change. He left campus Saturday evening with a greatly improved impression of the Big Ten program.
“Everyone is fired up, and that’s the biggest difference I saw,” Warren said. “When the old coaches were there, it wasn’t as much energy, just with them in another year and the losing streak. The new staff coming from Ohio State is about winning. I’m fired up about all of them, the new strength coach too.”
Warren’s recruitment blew up during his junior season. After the Scout four-star tackle picked up his first offer at Rutgers last summer, his options hit double digits during a solid season with Passaic Tech.
Warren plans to visit Maryland, Penn State and Pittsburgh this spring. Rutgers became the first school locked into his top five based on the Saturday visit.
“After today, they’re going to be in my top five no matter what,” Warren said. “They’re the first one to offer and they have new coaches in there, it’s going to be a great ride.”
Rutgers showed Warren its vision and discussed changes in strength and nutrition.
“I’m loving the presentation there,” he said. “The way Rutgers showed itself [at junior day], I think they’re a program of good coaches. I got to meet the coaches, got a little piece of what it would be like. When it was over, I just felt that it was a great experience for me.”
Rutgers offensive line coach AJ Blazek stood out to Warren when it comes to the new attitude of Scarlet Knight assistants.
“I loved coach AJ,” Warren said. “He was fired up the whole time and that’s what I liked about him. I like coaches like that.”
Warren’s cousin Keith Lumpkin starred as a three-year starter on the Rutgers offensive line. Warren speaks with Lumpkin for advice, he said, and wants a family feel at his final college destination.
“I’m looking for a family setting,” he said. “I want to be at a place where the coaches feel like parents, they support me, it can feel like another father. That’s what I’m looking for.”