Army Poses A Number Of Threats

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Though Army may throw the football rarely, if at all, this Saturday, the Scarlet Knights prepare for the pass.

"They lull you to sleep because they run, run, run, run, and then they take a shot over the top and they count on making a few plays in the pass game, big plays- scores, Rutgers football head coach Greg Schiano said after practice Thursday."

Schiano cautioned his secondary to remain steady against the Black Knights who can catch an opponent overshooting the triple-option offense.

"They take vertical shots, sure they do," he said. "You have to be disciplined, because it can get monotonous and frustrating and then all of a sudden you go cheat and try to make a play on one of those runs, especially if they hit those runs, six, eight, 10 a clip, and your corner(back) says, ‘Let me go help here.'

Earlier this season, quarterback Chip Bowden failed to complete a pass against Eastern Michigan, yet Army escaped with the 17-13 decision, in mid-October. They ran the ball 59 times for 341 yards and held possession for 32:37.

Furthermore, Air Force, another service academy, initiated the trend with a 31-28 win over Houston back in September. The Falcons totaled 380 ground yards on 78 carries, yet struck out in the air on seven attempts.

In the meantime, Rutgers (5-5, 4-2 BIG EAST) carries a four-game winning streak into this weekend's affair, at Rutgers Stadium. Fifth-year senior Mike Teel has regained confidence, having thrown 12 touchdowns in the last three contests. His favorite target, junior Kenny Britt, ranks among the nation's best wide receivers in several statistical categories.

Teel is closing on an individual record; he needs 225 yards to unseat Ryan Hart as the team's all-time passing leader. Britt already surpassed Tres Moses as Rutgers' all-time receiving leader with 2,666 yards and counting. He's also garnered much attention from NFL scouts and All-American recognition.

"I think Kenny's earned that," Schiano of Britt. "He's just played his way into a position, and I'm not the only one that considers him a viable candidate for that."

Despite these reassuring themes, Army (3-7) maintains a physical defense, especially its front seven, according to Schiano.

"They're outstanding," Schiano said. "First of all, they know what they want to do. There's no mystery. The front seven I think is really good. They have good athletes in the back, but the front seven, they really understand.

"They have several pressures, do certain things in their pressures that could be really tricky, so it's a multiple defense that's well-coached, and their kids play extremely hard."

Notes: Florida State safety Myron Rolle was named a finalist for the Rhodes Scholarship, a prestigious postgraduate academic award. Schiano shared his thoughts on the Jersey native, who played high school football for The Hun School of Princeton.

"It's an elite group," Schiano said. "I know Myron from his days in New Jersey and he's a great kid. I'm really happy for him. I hope he gets it."


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