#36 Rutgers Football 2012 Preview

Rutgers Scarlet Knights

2012 Overall Rank #36
#2 Big East Conference
Rutgers College Football 2012 Team Preview
Rutgers Team Page


Rutgers had a very successful 2011 campaign, winning nine games, including reeling off four wins in their last five games. They ended on a high note, easily taking care of Iowa State, 27-13 in their bowl finale. They are looking to improve upon their record and take their program to a whole new level this season, under their new coach, Kyle Flood, after their former coach was the surprise hire of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.    

2011 Record: (9-4 overall, 4-3 conference)  
2011 Bowl: Pinstripe Bowl vs Iowa State W (27-13)
Coach: Kyle Flood (0-0 at Rutgers, 0-0 Overall)  
Offensive Coordinator: Dave Brock
Defensive Coordinator: Robb Smith    

Returning Leaders:
Rushing: Jawan Jamison, RB, 996 yards
Passing: Gary Nova, QB, 1,533 yards
Receiving: Brandon Coleman, WR, 552 yards
Tackles:  Khaseem Greene, LB, 74
Sacks: Steve Beauharnais, LB, 3
Interceptions: Duron Harmon, DB, 5

Other Key Returnees: DB Logan Ryan, WR Jeremy Deering, WR Quron Pratt, TE D.C. Jefferson, OL Kaleb Johnson, OL R.J. Dill

Key Losses: WR Mohamed Sanu

Rutgers won nine games due to their imposing defense. Opponents were only able to scrap 18.31 points per game against them. When opponents are held to that few points it takes a lot of pressure off of the offense and makes it much easier to win football games. The pass defense in particular was the strength of this team, giving up just 172 yards per game, 9th in the nation, while averaging nearly 2.7 sacks per game, 15th in the nation and boasting the 5th best pass efficiency defense in the nation. With pass defense numbers that stellar, it becomes tough for opponents to move the ball. They are returning many key starters from that 2011 defense, so expect another dominate performance that catapults them to a very good run in the 2012 campaign.  

Rutgers offense left much to be desired last season, although they were very young. In particular their rushing offense was pitiful as they were not even able to muster up 100 yards per game. The offense needs to be much improved if the Scarlet Knights wish to compete for a Big East title. Their offensive line not only struggled to make holes for their running game but also keeping their quarterback upright. They allowed over two sacks per game, 83rd in the nation. The 2012 season should be better on the offensive end but Rutgers will need a breakout year from several key starters along the offensive front in order to have this offense at the desired level.

The Bottom Line:
Rutgers will once again have a great defense that will stifle opponents on a weekly basis. This will lead them to many victories but, in order for them to get over the hump, their offense needs to start firing on all cylinders. They have many young players who could be poised for a breakout year and if that happens they could find themselves in a battle for first place in the Big East. Either way, Rutgers appears to have the makings of a very good season and have a chance to compete at the top in the Big East.  

Projected Bowl: Russell Athletic Bowl

2011 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 97.77 (112 in the nation, 8th in conference)
Passing Offense: 241.23 (52, 3)   
Total Offense: 339.00 (99, 6)   
Scoring Offense: 26.38 (65, 4)  
Rushing Defense: 141.85 (51, 7)   
Pass Defense: 172.31 (9, 1)   
Total Defense: 314.15 (14, 1)   
Scoring Defense: 18.31 (8, 1)   
Turnover Margin: .46 (28, 3)  
Sacks: 2.69 (15, 5)   
Sacks Allowed: 2.31 (83, 4)

Madness 2012 Football Recruit Rankings:
#31 Darius Hamilton
#145 Chris Muller
#160 Leonte Carroo