Early Morning Edition


One NFL college scout says if he would have played for Notre Dame or USC instead of Rutgers, the whole country would know about him. Another scout says the only tight end from last year's draft who was clearly better than him was Jeremy Shockey. And a New Orleans Saints scout told Rutgers tight end L.J. Smith himself that if he doesn't go in the first round, the Saints will take him in the second round.
Rutgers' Smith could be first-rounder



After all that work to finally dig out of last place in the Big East's West Division, all it took was one truly horrible offensive performance for Rutgers to wind up back at the bottom of the standings looking up.
Memo to head coach Gary Waters: Burn the game tapes from the Knights' 52-46 loss yesterday to West Virginia at the Rutgers Athletic Center.
Rutgers zones out against W. Va.

As bad as yesterday's loss to West Virginia was, the worst may be to come for Rutgers because of the uncertainty over Herve Lamizana's sprained right ankle that had him rolling in pain underneath a basket after he landed awkwardly with 10:18 to play. Though Lamizana returned -- walking gingerly when he did -- and insists he will be fine for Wednesday's game at Connecticut, coach Gary Waters wasn't so sure.
Rutgers notebook: Lamizana is on shaky footing

PISCATAWAY - The sleeping giants of the Big East Conference slid back into full hibernation mode yesterday. The real difference between yesterday's abominable 52-46 loss to West Virginia in front of another loyal sellout of 8,021 at the RAC is that with four of its remaining six games on the road, where Rutgers is winless in the conference since Jan. 27, 2002, there may be no rustling the Scarlet Knights from this most untimely slumber.
Rutgers plummets into cellar

PISCATAWAY - Right after Pittsburgh pounded his team last week, after his group of eight underclassmen were thoroughly humiliated, West Virginia coach John Beilein kept getting asked the same question. "Is that a bad loss?" everyone wanted to know. "No," he said to them. "A loss is just a loss." That was Beilein's answer before he saw Rutgers on Saturday. Before his Mountaineers slogged their way to a 52-46 decision over the Scarlet Knights. Before Rutgers suffered a bad, bad loss. "That," Rutgers' coach Gary Waters said, "was a bad game."
North Jersey Media Group

There was a scary show at the Louis Brown Athletic Center on Saturday. It was so frightening you wanted to cover your face with your hands and peek through the fingers so you didn't miss any memorable gore. A bunch of tall guys were chucking an orange ball off of a glass backboard. They were banging the ball off an iron rim from close range. They were trying to throw the ball to each other, but instead wound up pegging innocent bystanders. The bystanders were responding with boos and insults.
College Basketball: Rutgers' loss was ugly to watch - Courier News

John Beilein couldn't pinpoint the exact moment he decided to change defenses Saturday. But the West Virginia coach was crystal clear about the impetus behind making the switch. "We were getting our butts kicked," he said. Beilein had sparingly used a 2-3 zone for the first time all season in West Virginia's previous outing, an 82-46 loss to Pittsburgh. He was forced to unveil it in full force Saturday after Rutgers scored the game's first 10 points and 15 of the first 20.
Rutgers baffled by West Virginia for second time this season - Courier News

PISCATAWAY -- Rutgers came into yesterday's game against West Virginia poised to complete the turnaround, to go from sole possession of last place to sole possession of fifth place in a little over a week.
But as the Scarlet Knights have done all season, they let the opportunity slip away. Rutgers scored 10 points in the first four minutes of the game but only 36 points the rest of the way - including one basket in the final four minutes - as West Virginia delivered a crushing blow to Rutgers' postseason hopes with a 52-46 victory at the Louis Brown Athletic Center/RAC.
The Trentonian


Women's Basketball

Cappie Pondexter relishes playing in a packed gym, feeding off the energy of a crowd cheering her every move. She's used to the feeling. A ticket for one of Pondexter's games at Marshall High School in Chicago was a hot commodity for fans eager to watch the Parade National Player on the Year. "There was a lot of pride and tradition at (Marshall)," Pondexter said. "We got a lot of (fan) support." But Pondexter has toiled in relative obscurity in her first season at Rutgers despite shaping the Scarlet Knights into a Final Four contender just one year after they posted the worst record (9-20) in school history.
Women's Basketball: Rutgers a tough sell at home - Courier News

Women's Tipoff


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