Heartbreaker: Part II

For the second week in a row Rutgers gave away a game to a clearly inferior opponent. The Knights blew an almost sure win and allowed Boston College to escape Piscataway with a 35-25 win.

For the second week in a row Rutgers had a clearly inferior opponent, clearly beaten.

For the second week in a row the Knights lost the game in the fourth quarter.

Rutgers opened up the game in style. On the second play of the game Ryan Hart hit Tres Moses on a 65 yard touchdown pass to put the Knights up 7-0.

A Raheem Orr sack of Boston College quarterback Paul Peterson gave the Knights the lead and the momentum.

Ryan Sands finished the scoring in the first quarter with a 26 yard field goal which put RU up 12 to 0. Rutgers was clearly in control of the game.

Derek Knight scored on a two yard touchdown in the second quarter to bring the Eagles within six but Ryan Sands hit a field goal to put RU up 15-6.

The two teams traded touchdowns before the half was over giving RU a 22-13 lead. The highlight of the scoring was an 80 kickoff return for a touchdown by Nate Jones.

Despite having only a 9 point lead RU was clearly in control. The Eagles had managed only one sustained drive in the first half and were being clearly outplayed by the Scarlet.

In the second half Boston College Coach Tom O'Brien decided to shut down the Rutgers running game by putting eight defenders in the box. BC had no one who could match up with RU's speed at wide receiver and this move gave the Knights the opportunity attack the BC secondary and turn the game into a blow out.

Inexplicably Rutgers tried to "establish the run" rather exploit the Eagles' secondary. 

The Knights were held to a number of "three and outs'" and Scarlet scoring was immediately shut down. That didn't stop the "establish the run" philosophy that the coaching staff seemed determined to employ. Time and time again RU took the ball up the middle against a defense that was ready and waiting for the run. It didn't work. The offense sputtered to a complete halt.

With RU's defense constantly on the field, they started to tire out. BC eventually wore down the RU "D" and came back to outscore the Knights 22-3 and pull out the win.


Things to feel good about

  • In just three short years of recruiting Rutgers was fielding an overall superior team to the established Boston College program. Most of the kids playing for Rutgers are coming back and many of the players on the field for the Knights were true freshmen, freshmen or sophomores.
  • Rutgers continued to produce some excellent individual performance. Ryan Hart hit 75%  of his passes for 233 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions. Brian Leonard rushed 32 times for 99 yards and averaged over three yards a carry despite the fact that BC often knew the run was coming, where it was headed and was stacking up to stop it at the point of attack!

Things to be concerned about

  • For the second week in a row Rutgers's opponent didn't win the game. Rutgers lost it.
  • The coaching staff's insistence on "establishing the run" was inexplicable and probably cost Rutgers the game.

Box Score


Mike Fasano: MikeFasano@comcast.net

Mike and the Big Dog's LLC


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