Questions still linger about this team, however. Who will start at quarterback? Will they have any energy today? Was last week a fluke? can they tackle? Do they remember how to play football?
I expect Luke Falk to start again. I hope they have energy and last week was a fluke! Tackling still remains to be seen..as does the question of whether they remember how to play football. This program is like Forrest Gump’s box of chocolates.
WSU enters today as a surprising 3 point underdog. Apparently Las Vegas wasn’t concerned by a Power 5 team losing at home to a FCS opponent and then traveling 3,000 miles to play another Power 5 team that beat a FCS opponent by 50. Here is how I see things going.
Rutgers will attempt to control the tempo and line of scrimmage. If they can, the game will be very difficult to win for the Cougars. Paul James and Josh Hicks can easily rack over hundreds of yards on the ground. Gash after gash followed by a play-action bomb to Leonte Caroo could prove fatal. RU is relatively inexperienced on the O-line so this is no guarantee.
WSU looks to establish the Air Raid against a depleted secondary. The running game was successful last week, especially in the first half, so I imagine Jim Mastro will have his guys ready to run again today. Leach preaches balance as the key to success in this offense. A mixture of deep throws and underneath routes should keep the Rutgers defense honest enough to allow Wicks and Morrow to move the ball.
Ultimately, I think Rutgers prevails. A month ago I surely would have picked WSU. Following the dismissal of 6 Rutgers players I definitely would have picked WSU. But after seeing the disappointment against Portland State last week it is difficult to pick this team to beat anyone. Factor in showers and a chance of thunderstorms in the forecast and I believe Rutgers holds the advantage. Falk gets his yards but red zone challenges reappear. The ground game for Rutgers picks up steam in the second half and wears down the Cougar D.
Rutgers 37 Washington State 28.