Gilmartin only has one year to extend Rutgers' offensive line legacy.
"I feel like last year I was still learning from (Jeremy) Zuttah, and I think that's probably been going on for the past four years really, learning from all the guys I was a backup for," the fifth-year senior offensive lineman said. "But this year I get the chance, with Art (Forst) behind me, teach him, and while I'm teaching him, skills I'm reminding myself of."
Although the PA announcer rarely introduced Gilmartin as a starter, in fact, only once in his collegiate career, he confidently prepared throughout his final training camp for an extended role this season.
"I personally feel like I've come out here and competed," he said. "By earning a certain job, I feel like I've completed what I wanted to get done right now, a lot of good competition with out defensive line with Jamaal (Westerman), George (Johnson) and Pete (Tverdov).
Initially a right guard, Gilmartin rotated to tackle following shoulder surgery.
"I had an injury, right shoulder surgery in Jan. ‘07 and I spent a lot of the offseason rehabbing it and getting back to strength by fall camp," he said of last year's training session. "I was just getting there, but then I moved back out to right tackle.
"I was in the mix for right guard but midway through camp, I started taking more right tackle reps. It was best for the team. Zuttah needed a backup and the coaches felt like I was a good move for that."
But the circumstances have changed. The Knights three O-linemen, Mike Fladell, Pedro Sosa and Zuttah, who earned the limelight for their quarterback protection of Mike Teel, have since graduated. Anthony Davis has shifted to left tackle and Forst has quickly progressed since he joined the program in the spring semester.
"Coach Schiano and (Offensive Line) coach (Kyle) Flood always talk about how they put the best 11 on the field and what really drives that is competition between all the O-linemen," Gilmartin said.
That competition increased with the addition of Forst, listed at 6-8 310-pounds.
"I don't really put too much thought into that ‘he just came out of high school,'" Gilmartin said of Forst. "He's still a big guy. He looks like a college offensive lineman. The age thing isn't that big of a deal, but I just have to show my best and hopefully do anything I need to start."
From Zuttah to Gilmartin and eventually to Forst and his successors, the Scarlet Knights' rich offensive line tradition commences outside Rutgers Stadium.
"Oh yeah, we're a very tight group of guys off the field and we always hang out together," Gilmartin said. "What's important and what the coaches think is important, bringing that camaraderie onto the line, and that's another important thing we tried to establish this camp."
Ready To Take His Starting Position
Scarlet Report Top Stories
Four-Star Fogg "110 Percent" on RutgersCalvert Hall star linebacker Tyshon Fogg explains his feeling after an in-home visit from Rutgers coach Chris Ash.
Scarlet ReportYesterday at 3:43 PM
Rutgers Recruiting Trend MeterWhere does Rutgers stand with the rest of the recruits on its board? The road to National Signing Day is long, grueling and confusing but Scarlet Report is here with constantly…
Scarlet ReportYesterday at 3:11 PM
Rutgers Scoutcast 46 - Lester Erb & AJ BlazekWelcome to the Rutgers Scoutcast, a Scarlet Knights podcast available free on the Scout Network. This week, we help you get to know a pair of Rutgers assistants in Lester Erb and…
Scarlet ReportYesterday at 1:52 PM
Recruiting Update after Ash Visits FatukasiWhat was Rutgers’ message to linebacker commit Olakunle Fatukasi during Wednesday’s in-home visit with head coach Chris Ash? Scarlet Report has the details and more.
Scarlet ReportYesterday at 12:47 PM
Highlights: Mamadou DoucoureRutgers got on the board in 2018 with the commitment of Mamadou Doucoure. The three-star center showed his game at Flyin to the Hoop.
Scout HoopsYesterday at 7:08 AM