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Rutgers vs. UConn preview: Scarlet Knights look to win the Big East

rutgersfootball112511_optBY MATT SUGAM
NEWJERSERYNEWSROOM.COM

1. Will the magnitude of the game be too much for Rutgers?

Aside from Edmond Laryea, no one on Rutgers roster was around for the 2006 season. So this is by far the biggest game they’ve played in this late in the season. With a chance to win at least a share of the Big East title, the Scarlet Knights have to make sure the moment doesn’t get too big for them. If it does, it could be costly. 

2. Stopping both of UConn’s quarterbacks

There’s the conventional drop-back passer, Johnny McEntee, and the Wildcat quarterback, Scott McCummings. How much each is used remains to be seen. It really depends on the ebb and flow of the game. So it’s not the easiest thing to prepare for. You’re basically preparing for two offenses in one game. But at least Rutgers is prepared by running such an offensive system themselves last year.

3. Will 10 straight games finally catch up to Rutgers?

The Knights haven’t had a bye since the middle of September. That means they’ve played 10 straight games without a week off. Obviously, that takes a toll on the body. Fortunately, they’ll have a month or so to rest between now and the bowl game. But now can’t be when the grueling schedule catches up with them if they want that bowl to be a BCS bowl.

This game’s key player is…

San San Te

I know what you’re saying. The key player is the kicker? But given how close the games in this series have gone in recent years, the difference in this game could be a field goal. The senior kicker has had an up and down season, but he can erase fans' memories of his inconsistent season with a big kick to win the game.

The sophisticated fan will be watching…

Friday’s games
It’s simple. If both Louisville and West Virginia lose on Friday, all Rutgers needs to do is win on Saturday to secure a trip to a BCS game. The Cardinals play a tough South Florida team while West Virginia takes on Pittsburgh in the Back Yard Brawl, which always proves to be a tough test for the Mountaineers. So when shopping on Black Friday, maybe buy USF and Pitt shirts.
Fourth and short
Jawan Jamison is 253 yards away from being the first running back since Ray Rice to rush for 1,000 yards in a season. With two games left, what once seemed out of the question doesn’t after a 200-yard performance against Cincinnati.
Quote of the week

“Me and D.C. [Jefferson] will sit in the hotel and it’s actually kind of funny. We’ll review football things, but then just to kind of relax a little bit we’ll watch the History Channel which is one of our favorite things to do.” – Tight end Paul Carrezola on his night before the game ritual.

For more Rutgers football coverage follow Matt Sugam on Twitter @MattSugam and on Facebook

 

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