Status quo on QB: No consensus ... yet

Senior Dom Natale improved significantly during his time at the helm in a scrimmage situation, leading the Scarlet Knights on two touchdown drives.

The first drive came during the regular scrimmage and was capped off by a touchdown scamper for Joe Martinek.

The second, and more impressive drive, came during the two-minute drill. He led the Knights 90 yards down the field, hitting freshman receiver Mohamed Sanu three times including a 46-yard bomb and a short touchdown pass.

"The defense fought hard. We came back at them in the two-minute drill," Natale said. "So it was a good heavyweight match."

Through the scrimmage part of the day, Natale completed five of 13 passes.

"I'd rather be 15-for-15, but I think it was a good day," Natale said. "We started out slow, and the rain didn't help but we can't let that get to us. I thought it was good because you want to get game-experience out here. It was good to fight the adversity"

Natale did have two interception throws during the day, however, one to Zaire Kitchen and one to Damaso Munoz during redzone drills.

"I think we came together pretty well," Kitchen said. "From the first snap to the last, guys were in the right spots. We had no substitution errors, the calls were given by coach and in that sense, we did pretty well."

Freshmen D.C. Jefferson and Tom Savage both improved as well while splitting action with the second team. Both quarterbacks led the Knights on touchdown drives, as they scored 28 points during the scrimmage. Martinek scored the touchdown on Jefferson's drive and sophomore running back Jourdan Brooks scored at the end of Savage's drive.

"It wasn't great," Schiano said. "The weather had something to do with it, too. We dropped a lot of footballs, so one thing I always look at is attempts, completions and drops. We had drive-stoppers, wide-open drive stoppers that we dropped.

"I want to review the tape and evaluate all the data that's available to me. Whether it be video or statistical data because I am watching a lot of things at once, not just the quarterbacks."

Martinek ended the day with 74 yards and two touchdowns on 10 touches and Brooks added 50 yards on seven attempts.

"I think he's much more confident," Schiano said. "Not that he wasn't confident in his abilities, but he's confident he has the confidence of his teammates and his coaches. He's proven he can do it."

Rutgers is expected to have its third and final scrimmage before the start of the season Wednesday. It's at that time that Schiano hopes things will become clearer.

"We're going to evaluate it," Schiano said on the fight for the starting quarterback job. "Hopefully we get together Monday and we'll be heading in a clearer direction. I don't know if it'll be decided, but a clearer direction. I hate to do it without watching the tape."

Other News
No Big East teams received placement in the top 25 of the Associated Press' preseason poll. The Scarlet Knights rank in at No. 30 overall with Pittsburgh leading all Big East schools at 28.

Scarlet Report Top Stories