Notes: Graves effort, Young update

After losing his starting position, Rutgers red-shirt junior tight end Shamar Graves decided to work harder to earn back some playing time. In the loss to Pittsburgh, Graves made three catches, and re-established himself as a central part of the passing game. Also, running back Kordell Young gives an update on his knee after his most extensive playing time of the season.

Rutgers tight end Shamar Graves caught two passes in the season opener, but by the time the bye week came arrived a few games later he lost his starting spot to red-shirt freshman D.C. Jefferson, who began training camp as a quarterback.

Graves acknowledged he was personally down in the dumps, in a big way, after last month's win at Maryland, but was determined not to let it ruin his season.

Scarlet Knights coach Greg Schiano challenged Graves to improve his play, and the fourth-year junior believes he has responded, at least in the passing game. He made three catches for 30 yards in the loss Pittsburgh.

"I'd like to say that I'm still giving a response,'' Graves said. "I don't want to be complacent and say I've given it. I want to continue with what I'm doing and even get better in everything I'm doing. Not to over think anything, but go out there and play.''

While Graves was down, he didn't let it destroy his confidence.

"I didn't doubt myself,'' Graves said. "I didn't understand how to do everything. I thought I could go out there and lead by example all the time. I learned that sometimes I have to step out of my boundaries and my comfort zone and show some emotion, not only on the field but off the field.

"That is what this has taught me, how to show emotion, and I definitely did that. I'm definitely more laid back, but now I'm going to show emotion throughout the game.''

Graves said the involvement in the passing game sends a message.

"It definitely shows me I can do this,'' Graves said. "God has given me the ability to do something great, and he's using me to do it and be an influence to the team.''

Young feeling fine
Rutgers running back Kordell Young had his most extensive playing time this season, and his surgically-repaired knee responded well.

"It's just typical practice, typical game, typical post-surgery soreness,'' Young said. "I've been getting stronger and stronger as I go along. As far as the pain, you just have to work through it and know it will be better in the long run.''

Young carried twice for seven yards and saw extensive playing time in passing situations. He also had three catches for 32 yards.

Injury report
Schiano said he didn't believe anyone who suffered some dings in the Pittsburgh loss would miss the Army game, and there is more good news for the Scarlet Knights on the injury front.

Safety Patrick Kivlehan practiced, and offensive lineman Caleb Ruch did some side work, Schiano said.


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