The Scarlet Knights (5-3, 2-2) no longer control their own destiny in the Big East. Coach Schiano and his team must now focus on getting better and reestablishing an identity for this season.
"I'm honest with the guys," Coach Schiano said. "I don't want them to
there and say we don't have a shot. Certainly there is a ton out there
us to achieve. This isn't a place that is a perennial bowl team that
to major bowls every single year. This is still new to us and we are
working our tails off to become one of those teams again this year."
The message this week was clear from Coach Schiano - every player and
coach must be held accountable. The question of intensity has been
up earlier in the season by players like RU wide receiver Tim Brown and
every person must play to their capability and perhaps beyond.
"The fine line between being successful and not, is doing it every
down on the practice field as hard as they can, whether it is a scout
player or a quarterback," Coach Schiano continued.
Coach Schiano did not feel as though his team was dominated against West Virginia. He used video from the game to show that there were a few key
plays that caused the final result to be as drastic as it was.
"You don't want them to sit there and say, 'man, we weren't even in the
game'". "Well you are in the game, it is right here. These are the
three touchdown passes dropped, some missed tackles, not closing the
angles like we have done all week. When you look at it as a player you
say, 'ah ok, if we would have done it, there is a chance things would
UConn currently leads the Big East and presents the Scarlet Knights with
their third ranked opponent in as many weeks. Rutgers' only win against
top-25 team came against South Florida two games ago.
In order to beat the Huskies, Rutgers will have to learn from its past
mistakes and make the necessary changes before game-time this Saturday.
"I think you learn from everything," Coach Schiano said. "You learn from
wins, you learn from losses. It's more fun to learn from wins. Certainly
there are things we did, or didn't do, Saturday, that we know if we
do this weekend the results are going to be the same. So they will learn
The last time Rutgers played in UConn, RU quarterback Mike Teel started
the game but had to come out for then-senior Ryan Hart who led the
Knights to a come from behind 26-24 win.
"Ryan came in and Ray [Rice] rushed for 200 yards that day in the rain,"
Teel said. "We were able to squeak out a win and it will be a four
football game when we go up there this weekend."
One position that has seen three different starters this season is the
fullback spot. Andres Morales, Jack Corcoran, and Jean Beljour have all
been in the mix this season.
All three will continue to be used at different points of the game,
depending on what situations dictate at that time.
"Andres [Morales] and Jack [Corcoran] will continue to battle." Coach
"Beljour will always be there, but he's better when we pick our spots
him, other than every play. He's such a big role on special teams, so I
think Morales and Jack will handle it."
The scouting report on UConn maintains that the defense beware of the
rushing game. The Huskies' top two running backs have combined for just
under 1000 yards this season. Andre Dixon, the New Brunswick, New Jersey
native, and Donald Brown, the former Atlantic Highlands standout, have
provided Connecticut with a stable rushing attack.
"We recruited both of them, we didn't end up going on either of them,
we recruited both and thought they were very good players," Coach
said. "Sometimes it's just the needs of your program at the time,
you offer them a scholarship and pursue them."
"But we knew they were good players coming out of high school, and they
certainly lived up to that, both of them."
Connecticut features a big quarterback [6-foot-5 and 200-pounds] in
Tyler Lorenzen who has rushed for 220 yards, and has a better than 2-1
ratio on the year. Lorenzen will force Rutgers to ensure that they
maintain contain on the edge and disallow too many rush attempts.
If past games against UConn are any indication, the game this Saturday
will be an interesting one. In the past few years, these games have
provided many memorable moments.
"They have been wild games here and at home as well," Coach Schiano
"It seems like whenever UConn and Rutgers gets together there are some
wild football games. Is there anything that makes me believe this week
will be any different? No. We just have to go up there and let it fly,
see what happens."
Rutgers Football Must Regroup
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