Friday, June 20, 2008

Vote for the "Face of Rutgers Football" at

ESPN has chosen the "1869 Photo[sic]" of the Rutgers-Princeton game as "'s Face" of the Rutgers football program. You can help choose "SportsNation's Pick" for that honor by clicking here. You can choose the "photo" or Ray Rice or Greg Schiano or Brian Leonard. What, no Paul Robeson? No representation at all from the 20th Century??
There were no cameras that could freeze sports action in 1869 of course, so "the photo" is actually a cropped and decolorized reproduction of the Arnold Friberg painting that was commissioned by Chevrolet for the 100th anniversary of the game in 1969. You can see it, and a little bit of its history, here and here.
[ESPN's inexact use of the written language continues on their Rutgers Team Page, where their ad for the ESPN Shop still (after at least a month) shouts: "RUTIGERS FANS, GEAR UP NOW!".
They also have a problem with their possessive case on the Comments page with the heading "Rutger's Face of the Program"; Rutger Who? Rutger Hauer?]

Another Day, Another List of 2009 Recruits : Welcome Duron, Robert, and Malcolm!

And again, another four-star player (a fifth, if you're counting) has decided that Rutgers Stadium is the place to play his college games. Click here for more details from The Star-Ledger's website about today's newest list of verbal commitments for 2009, especially about the one received from Duron Harmon.

Harmon, a 6-2, 192-pounder from Wyoming, Del., has been timed in 4.52 for the 40. He is a two-way star at Caesar Rodney High School, rushing for 701 yards and 12 touchdowns as a running back while playing safety on defense.
Iowa, Maryland, Pittsburgh, Stanford, Temple, Connecticut and Virginia were on Harmon's list of potential college choices before he declared for Rutgers.

Welcome to Rutgers Duron Harmon, Robert Joseph, and Malcolm Bush!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

A Fourth Four-Star Recruit for RU's 2009 Class: Welcome Aaron Hayward

Click to read "Rutgers Lands South Jersey Star" from today's New York Post about the verbal commitment of rising senior Aaron Hayward of Penns Grove High School.

The Carneys Point native was tabbed the country's 15th-ranked running back by, rushing for 1,363 yards and 17 touchdowns as a junior. But he could well end up as a wide receiver, or even in the secondary, after he had 48 tackles, three interceptions and forced two fumbles last season.

Four of RU's 12 verbals for the fall of '09 are now from four-star-rated players. Aaron joins future classmates quarterback Tom Savage , running back Desmond Scott, and center Mark Brazinski, in adding stars to the strong foundation built by Greg Schiano and the current Scarlet Knights.

Welcome to Rutgers Aaron!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Green Knight Strikes Again, or Sol Iustitiae et Occidentem Illustra gains a new literal meaning!

The Rutgers Seal famously points out that "The Sun of Righteousness Shines Also Upon the West". It was announced today that all that bright occidental sun shining on the Livingston campus is going to be put to practical use supplying 10% of the campus's electricity (with half the 10 million dollar cost of the solar energy facility coming from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities).

... the solar energy project will save Rutgers more than $200,000 in its first year of operation, rising to more than $300,000 in annual savings by the end of the 15-year program. In addition, the annual 1,350 ton reduction of CO2 emissions from the university is equivalent to saving more than 28 hundred barrels of oil, or 640 tons of coal [helping to save a West Virginia mountaintop!].

Construction of the solar farm is expected to begin this fall and to be in operation in spring 2009. The facility will be located on an open parcel of land at the northeast corner of the Livingston Campus in Piscataway, bordered by Berrue Circle, Road 2 and Suttons Lane. The ground-mounted array will comprise more than 7,000 solar panels about four-feet high.

The Green Knight (not the green knight known as "Sparty" who was last chased out of Piscataway with his tail between his legs in 2005) raises his sword once again.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Rutgers Academics Tip the Scales for another 2009 four-star recruit : Welcome Mark Brazinski

"Every kid dreams of holding that crystal bowl trophy [presented to the national champion]. For me, however, academics come first."
--Mark Brazinski
Rutgers has received another verbal commitment from a highly-recruited junior -- the third from a four-star recruit. Center Mark Brazinski should be entering our favorite school in the fall of 2009 with quarterback Tom Savage and running back Desmond Scott.
Considered the state's top offensive lineman, this Immaculata High School star was not only weighing offers from Bowl Division schools like BC and FSU, but he considered following in his brother Brian's footsteps (Brian was an All-Ivy center at the University of Pennsylvania).

"I wasn't sure what I was going to do until I found out I can get into the school of business as a freshman at Rutgers," said Brazinski. "Before this year, it was only available to you in your junior year and if you had a 3.3 GPA. Now they're taking a select group of scholars and allowing them to enroll in the school as freshman."
Being able to choose his major area of study early is one thing, and I know I've said it before, but I have to believe that Rutgers' stellar APR numbers are also influencing the decisions of these student athletes who stand out in the classroom as well as on the field. And if academically-gifted players continue to choose RU, then those numbers should stay in the stratosphere for years to come.


Saturday, June 7, 2008

30 minutes closer to the season kickoff!

The kickoff time for the Rutgers / Fresno State game has been moved from 4:30 to 4:00 on Labor Day, September 1, so I've adjusted the countdown clock that appears in the sidebar.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

How To Play College Football (via Disney 1944), or Upstream Red Team!, or Go Taxidermy Tech!

Here's a little off-season distraction for you.

I had a friend overseas who was a little mystified by the rules of baseball this morning, so she had found the Disney "How to Play Baseball (1942)" film on YouTube. I don't think it helped much, but she sent me the link and I stumbled upon the "How to Play Football (1944)" film, which I don't ever remember seeing as a kid.
As a Rutgers fan, it's hard not to take a rooting interest in the team dressed in red.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Welcome Desmond Scott!

"Desmond Scott of Durham, N.C., rated the No. 2 all-purpose running back in the country by, verbally committed to Rutgers today," reports Tom Luicci of the Star-Ledger this afternoon.

Yesterday we were "warned" that this announcement of another highly-ranked 2009 recruit might be coming today and it was suggested in that article that Scott may have been tipped in his decision by the fact that Rutgers was the school of Ray Rice, a very similar back in terms of size and style.

I have another theory, found in an article that appeared in Yahoo Sports back on March 10 when Scott was starting his tour of Georgia, Georgia Tech, Maryland, North Carolina, Duke, and others, including RU.

“First of all I want to see how the academics are at the school. I want to major in education and be a social studies teacher and eventually a school principal. Secondly, I’ll look at the coaches and players and if I can get along with them and how I interact with them. Next, I’ll look at the city life and what I can do there and whether I can stay or leave after college. Finally, location doesn’t really matter as long as my family can come see me in a day’s drive.”

Anyone who's saying "first of all I want to see how academics are at the school" has to have been impressed when the NCAA's Academic Progress Report numbers came out in early May with Rutgers trailing only Stanford and Navy -- leading the Big East, and all other state universities, once again. Of course, another of Desmond Scott's schools, Duke, was tied with RU at #3 in the APRs, but I don't think Duke is thinking about challenging for a BCS bowl in the next four or five years.

Welcome to Rutgers Desmond!

(Here's a short summary of the most recent 2009 commitments).