Former Player Perspective

The former player perspective is a feature where a former Scarlet Knight reviews the past week's game or the season to date and provides viewpoints. This week's installment features Todd Lane's (Class of 1992) perspective on the West Virginia game and his outlook for the remainder of the season.

My name is Todd Lane. I'm a former Rutgers football letter-winner having played inside linebacker from 1988 to 1992. I wore the jersey No. fifty-five. During my career at Rutgers many of my teammates knew me as "Big Daddy". I truly enjoyed my athletic and scholastic career on the Banks and will continue to follow Rutgers athletics. The many experiences and relationships that I have established from my time at RU have been real blessings to me in my life.

Today, I am married to my high school sweet heart, and I have two beautiful children that I love dearly that keep me busy. I presently live in Mount Laurel, New Jersey. My career is in the Information Technology field as a Senior Systems Engineer for a consulting firm located in mid-town Manhattan. In addition, I have recently started my own consulting firm and look forward to great things in the future.

As a fan, I looked forward to this game as a defining point for RU's season. The conference championship obviously up for grabs, RU needed to make a statement to themselves and the rest of the league whether they will be a contender for the league championship. With respect and first place on the line, RU came out flat and lacked a sense of urgency throughout the entire game!

Beginning with the first quarter our offense was apparently out of sync or confused. With the many talented players on offense, none of our playmakers seemed to want to make a play.

The entire offensive unit's performance was very disappointing. I understand that the offensive coordinator is trying to give opposing defenses some different looks, but playing musical chairs with the quarterbacks has become counter productive. I liked the change for the Pitt game, using Underwood as a change up in the offense. But, unless you add a passing threat with Underwood at quarterback, I believe the changing of quarterbacks throughout the game is a momentum breaker.

From my experience playing the game, building trust and a comfort level with your teammates is crucial to the overall success of a defensive or especially offensive unit. When you utilize two quarterbacks, let alone three, you change the chemistry and tempo of the offensive unit. I can understand if you want to use multiple quarterbacks in the early stages of the game, but settle on the one with the hot hand.

Rutgers' defense consistently played undisciplined throughout the game.

Many times the defense was soft at the point of attack. The majority of big running plays West Virginia successfully ran were due to edge players losing containment or rushing up field too quickly. There where several plays in which WVU broke runs outside that either a defensive end or outside linebacker lost containment.

It seemed that our defensive players thought that WVU was primarily a passing team and anticipated pass first and run second. Even with the defense giving up big runs, they stilled played well enough to win.

Rutgers as a whole has a good team, but the players and coaches have to become more consistent. From week to week you don't know what Rutgers team will show up.

The season is still bright and a lot can be accomplished this year, but the players and coaches must take the next step. The players must play up to their individual and team potential. The coaching must put the players in the best position to win. I will continue to support the program regardless, but I want to see Rutgers reach their collective potential.

This is No. 55 signing out.
Go RU!!!

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