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Rutgers Scarlet Knights 2016 College Football Preview, Schedule, Prediction, Depth Chart, Outlook

Rutgers Scarlet Knights 2016 Preview

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The Rutgers Scarlet Knights were 4-8 last season and will look to take the step to bowl eligibility this season.

Overview: Chris Ash will be in his first season at Rutgers and will have a long way to go to make Rutgers a contender in the Big Ten. Rutgers does have a tough schedule with games at Washington, Iowa, at Ohio State, Michigan, at Michigan State, and Penn State.

Rutgers Scarlet Knights 2016 College Football Preview, Schedule, Prediction, Depth Chart, Outlook

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Offense: Drew Mehringer is the Rutgers Offensive Coordinator and will be looking to run more of a spread style offense this season. Chris Laviano is expected to be the starting quarterback, after throwing for 2,247 yards and 16 touchdowns. Rutgers does have experience in the backfield, as they are returning their top two rushers from last season. Robert Martin rushed for 763 yards and 6 touchdowns, while Josh Hicks rushed for 674 yards and 4 touchdowns for the Scarlet Knights. Janarion Grant and Andrew Patton will be returning for Rutgers at the wide receiver position. Grant had 352 receiving yards and 1 touchdown, while Patton had 432 receiving yards and 1 touchdown last season. The offensive line will have experience this season, as 4 of the 5 starters are returning.

Defense: Jay Niemann and the Rutgers defense will look to improve on a rough season last year. The three leading tacklers from last season’s team are gone, but Isaiah Wharton had 57 tackles and 10 pass breakups and will be returning. Quanzell Lambert will anchor the defensive line, along with Julian Pinnix-Odrick and Darius Hamilton. Other than the defensive line, Rutgers has questions marks with the rest of their defense. Rutgers lost all 3 linebackers and were torched through the air in the secondary. The secondary is led by Isaiah Wharton, but needs to improve a lot from last season in order to give Rutgers a chance to win.

Special Teams: Rutgers will be looking to fill open spots for punting and place kicking, while Janarion Grant will handle the return duties after an explosive season in 2015.

Outlook: Rutgers will most likely have another down season due to lack of talent and a very tough schedule. The questions on defense will most likely lead to a lot of points for the opposition. I think 2-4 wins is a reasonable goal for this Rutgers team.  

Schedule:

Saturday, Sept. 3               at Washington
Saturday, Sept. 10            Howard
Saturday, Sept. 17            New Mexico
Saturday, Sept. 24            Iowa
Saturday, Oct. 1                at Ohio State
Saturday, Oct. 8                Michigan
Saturday, Oct. 15              Illinois
Saturday, Oct. 22              at Minnesota
Saturday, Oct. 29              Idle
Saturday, Nov. 5                Indiana
Saturday, Nov. 12             at Michigan State
Saturday, Nov. 19             Penn State
Saturday, Nov. 26             at Maryland

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