The 6'2" 215-pound receiver finished the day with 101 yards on 10 receptions. His tangible output as well as his display of physical toughness presented a silver lining in an otherwise disappointing day as the Scarlet Knights' dropped their season opener at the hands of the Cincinnati Bearcats.
With two 1,000-yard receivers getting accustomed to their newly found homes within the NFL, Rutgers appeared to fully-utilize the talents of the 19- year old true freshman, Mohamed Sanu. Sanu became the first true freshman to start at wide receiver in the Greg Schiano era. His reception of a two- point conversion in the fourth quarter signified his first career points in a Rutgers uniform.
His play was met with laudable comments from Rutgers Head Football Coach Greg Schiano.
"He's had only 31 practices at receiver and he's playing like a good Big East receiver," stated Schiano.
"It's pretty nice to hear him say that," stated Sanu, in response. "I picked it up pretty fast. I have a great coach in Coach Jenkins. You got a great group of receivers around you (and a) great group of guys you can ask questions and feel comfortable around so I picked it up pretty fast."
The final result notwithstanding, Sanu enjoyed the first game he's had the opportunity to participate in.
"It's pretty exciting. It's been a while so I had to just stay low, (stay) calm and just get out there and have fun."
The transition from high school to the newly expanded Rutgers Stadium aside, Sanu expressed delight in getting onto the field and providing his quarterback with an additional option in addition to Senior WR Tim Brown.
"I wasn't worried about that [expansion-related activities], I was just worried about [getting] the win and just trying to get something going."
"I expected it to be fast-paced. Very fast paced. I was already adjusted to the speed (of the game) by practicing with the guys on our team so it was really all I expected."
Sanu along with Tom Savage provided a promising 1-2 punch, connecting on 7 completions for 64 yards in the second half of yesterday's competition.
"We have been on the same page a lot lately so it was just clicking as soon as we got on the field together," Said Sanu.
Sanu displayed a full array of skills in blocking (having laid out a Bearcat on Rutgers' opening drive in a legal, though impressive physical display of his overall talents), pass catching, and ability to gain yardage after the catch.
"[I was able to] get possession of the ball and move north and south. I made sure I ran my routes the right way, got to all my landmarks and did all the little things right."
"(I need to) make sure I get off the ball, get more prepared, get my footwork down with all my routes and get out my routes faster".
Despite RU's slow start, the Savage-to-Sanu connection evident in the Scarlet Knights' season opener provides much needed hope for a season that still has much football to be played.
Sanu Impacts Rutgers Receiving Corps
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