Blue White Illustrated

Rutgers Pregame

Penn State Sports Magazine

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P R E G A M E R E P O R T P E N N S T A T E @ R U T G E R S T I M E N O O N , N O V . 1 7 | T V B T N RUTGERS FACTS COACH Chris Ash (Drake, '96) COACH'S RECORD 7-27 (3-22 Big Ten) in three seasons at Rut- gers; career college record: same 2018 RECORD 1-9, 0-7 Big Ten RECORD VS. PSU Penn State leads the all-time series, 26-2. MOST RECENT MEETING Rut- gers held Saquon Barkley to 35 yards rushing, but Trace McSorley threw for 214 yards and two touchdowns, and the Scarlet Knights managed only 43 yards through the air in a 35-6 loss to the Nittany Lions at Beaver Sta- dium on Nov. 11, 2017. GOOD NEWS Rutgers had some surprising suc- cess on the ground against Michi- gan last week. Facing a Wolverines defense that was al- lowing only 93.9 rushing yards per game, the Scarlet Knights gained 193 yards, averaging 5.8 yards per carry. BAD NEWS This will be the Scarlet Knights' third game of the season against a ranked opponent. Earlier this year, they faced Ohio State and Michigan, both of which were ranked fourth in the country at the time they played Rutgers. The combined final score of those games, both losses: 94-10. DID YOU KNOW? Rutgers offensive coordinator John McNulty is a Penn State graduate. McNulty, a Scranton, Pa., native, played safety for the Nittany Lions from 1988-90. He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Michigan before moving on to Connecticut and later the NFL. M A T T   H E R B | M A T T @ B L U E W H I T E O N L I N E . C O M It seems, at first glance, like a mismatch. At second glance, too. Yetur Gross-Matos, Shareef Miller, Robert Windsor and the rest of Penn State's linemen have been on a roll lately, racking up sacks at an impressive rate as they've spear- headed the Nittany Lions' maturation into one of the Big Ten's most quarterback-unfriendly defenses. Rutgers, meanwhile, has not been on a roll. The Scarlet Knights' passing game has been one of the Big Ten's worst, with a league-low four touchdown passes and a league-high 18 in- terceptions. But there are numbers within numbers, stats within stats. If you look at Rutgers' numbers from a certain angle, there are some that look fairly encouraging as the Scarlet Knights get set for this weekend's home finale against Penn State. For example, before throwing a fourth- quarter interception last week vs. Michigan, freshman quarterback Artur Sitkowski had gone PSU's resurgent defense aims to keep Rutgers out of the Big Ten win column 1 N O V E M B E R   1 4 ,   2 0 1 8 B L U E W H I T E O N L I N E . C O M Shareef Miller pursues QB Gio- vanni Rescigno during last year's game between Penn State and Rutgers. Resigno has been backing up Artur Sitkowski this season. Photo by Steve Manuel THE BIG HURT

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