Rutgers Football reaches mark they haven’t seen since 2014
It’s a good time to be a Rutgers football fan. I wrote a month ago about how the team was off to a fast start, and it looked like they were on their way to a promising season.
Well, five weeks later it looks like that’s coming to fruition. On Saturday, Rutgers beat Illinois 31-14 to improve their record to 6-2 and qualified for bowl eligibility for the first time since 2014.
Back then, it was their first year in the Big Ten Conference and Kyle Flood was their head coach. Their final record was 8-5 and they played in the Quick Lane Bowl where they were defeated by North Carolina 40-21. It looked like a good inaugural season for the Scarlet Knights in one of college football’s premiere conferences.
Fast forward almost a decade and well, they haven’t qualified for a bowl since. They did play in a bowl in 2021 (Taxslayer Gator Bowl) as a COVID-19 replacement for Texas A&M.
That year their final record was 4-8. It was Greg Schiano’s second year as head coach, and they lost the game to Wake Forrest.
A lot has changed since then for Rutgers. Roster turnover, and a belief in their new (and also formerly old) head coach. They’re off to their best Big Ten start in program history.
They have a VERY tough road ahead. Finishing with games against Ohio State, Penn State, Iowa and Maryland. Three of those teams are currently ranked inside the top 25 in the nation.
But Rutgers has done the hard part of the job. They’ve got themselves in a position to play in a bowl game. One more win will officially guarantee them a bowl berth, but where they currently stand, they’ll be at least eligible no matter how their season ends.
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The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5's Kyle Clark. Any opinions expressed are his own.