The Ohio State football team takes on the Rutgers Scarlet Knights on November 4th. Here is what you need to know about Greg Schiano’s team.
We enter the month of November in our Ohio State football schedule prep series as the Buckeyes meet up with Rutgers on November 4th in Piscataway. The Buckeyes crushed the Scarlet Knights last season in Columbus, 49-10 on an overcast Saturday afternoon.
That game is most remembered for the heated sideline exchange between the two former Ohio State staff members in Ryan Day and Greg Schiano on the Jesse Mirco fake punt that really wasn’t a fake punt. That has since been put aside and the two head coaches appear to be on good terms.
Greg Schiano is in his fourth season since returning to coach Rutgers and things have not gone according to plan. With only a 6-22 record in the Big Ten the past three seasons, Schiano needs to find a way to win some more ball games within the conference.
But as Ohio State travels to New Jersey next November, the Scarlet Knights are hoping that starting quarterback Gavin Wimsatt can give them the spark they need to turn things around in Piscataway. Wimsatt took over the starting role in the last four games of the season in 2022 and gave Schiano and his staff some hope. He threw for 775 yards and 5 touchdowns in those games, including a very solid game against Michigan State where he had 236 yards passing and two touchdowns.
Rutgers’ biggest downfall since it joined the Big Ten has been a lack of production at QB. The need for Wimsatt to make a jump in 2023 will be instrumental to their success in 2023 and to their chance at hanging with the Buckeyes.
But they also have had a lack of offensive playmakers and I don’t see that changing in 2023. Starting running back Kyle Monangai returns for his third season after rushing for 445 yards and two scores in 2022.
The receiver position is a mess for Rutgers right now after losing both starting receivers to the NFL over the offseason. Shameen Jones, on paper, is their best option as a No. 1 wideout. He had 15 catches for 252 yards and two touchdowns last season. They are also moving former tailback, Rashad Rochelle, to receiver, hoping to catch lighting in a bottle.
Defensively, things don’t look much better. Defensive end Wesley Bailey is probably Rutgers’ best player on that side of the ball. He recorded 3.5 sacks and 28 tackles as a redshirt freshman last season.
In the secondary they have Desmond Igbinosun starting at safety. He had a productive 2022 campaign in which he had 56 tackles and a forced fumble. If that name sounds familiar, it’s because he’s brothers with Ohio State’s recent transfer portal pickup, Davison Igbinosun, who hopes to start at corner for the Buckeyes in 2023.
Overall, the Scarlet Knights just don’t stack up. This team is still years away talent-wise to becoming competitive in the Big Ten, let alone with Ohio State. Hopefully, the Rutgers administration is patient with Greg Schiano because he’s probably the only coach who could turn this train around.