Chris Laviano Lashing Out At Rutgers Fans Is Just Another Reason That His Biggest Fan Needed To Be Fired
I'll admit it. A part of me was a little bit happy when Chris Laviano lay writhing in pain. I was a little excited when Hayden Rettig came into the game to replace him. I couldn't have been more disappointed when Kyle Flood put a quarterback, who looked like he was destined for a surgical table no more than 90 seconds earlier, back in the game after just one play. I may not have voiced my displeasure like the fans that mercilessly booed Chris Laviano's return, but I can certainly relate to how they felt at the time. That doesn't mean I endorse openly disrespecting a kid that has given his all, even though that's not saying much, for Rutgers football. In fact, even after 5 hours of tailgating, I was extremely vocal in telling those around me to quiet down as they made fools of themselves and the University. The problem I have isn't that the booing wasn't warranted, it's that it wasn't the right time for it. I actually felt bad for Chris Laviano, obviously less so after this completely misguided Instagram post, but still, he was put in an impossible situation. His Head Coach was so stubborn in his support of him, even after his repeated failures, that the fans almost had to boo. As hard as it may be for Chris Laviano to believe, those boos weren't directed at a quarterback who has struggled for a large majority of the year. They were directed at a head coach that never had the sense to relieve him of his duties when it likely would have taken some of the pressure off of him.
I have always bought into the 'F.A.M.I.L.Y.' mantra that Kyle Flood has continuously stood behind. It seemed like a nice rallying cry for a university, and it's fan base, that has experienced so much disappointment over the years. The idea that the coaches, the players, and even the fans were thought of as one united entity was something that made it easier to stand behind Rutgers during the tough times. Unfortunately, Chris Laviano's frivolous use of social media has shown that's not truly what existed behind closed doors. I don't know what Kyle Flood slipped in their 'Kool-Aid', but this whole 'F.A.M.I.L.Y' thing is starting to feel more like a cult mentality between the coach and his players, than a slogan that the people who support them can embrace.
Chris Laviano saying he doesn't give a fuck about the fans, that make it possible for him to get a free education playing football, shows that Kyle Flood had instituted an 'us against the world' attitude. An attitude in which the people that wanted the best for the program were also thought of as the enemy. Successful college athletics, more so than any other sport, are predicated on having a strong, loyal following. Spitting in that following's face, proverbially speaking, is how you lose their undying support. Kyle Flood didn't just sacrifice meaningful football games by standing behind a faltering quarterback, he drove a stake between the team and their fans. I understand why Chris Laviano felt so wronged when his supposed health was met with verbal animosity, but it was symbolic of so much more than that. It was the culmination of Kyle Flood's failures as a head coach. It's a shame that a young player that doesn't know any better had to feel that wrath, but his decision to voice his displeasure to the masses was just another sign that the coach that was in his corner needed to be fired. I won't find a new team, and if Laviano really believes that's the answer then he should ready his walking papers, because the person that let him get away with this stupidity already got served his.
Maybe it was just a coincidence that rain steadily poured down on the remaining few proud Rutgers fans that stayed for the culmination of the collapse on Saturday. However, the weather was somehow poetic in watching the eventual end of the unmitigated disaster that the Kyle Flood era has become. It wouldn't have felt right watching him sprint off the field, for the last time, on a gorgeous Saturday afternoon. The depressing, cold, damp atmosphere somehow felt like it was a sign of the black could that has hung over this football program since early August.
I don't think Kyle Flood is a bad guy. I don't even think he is a bad football coach. He is, on the other hand, unquestionably a bad HEAD football coach. He has been in over his head from day one, and while that was masked by a successful inaugural season in the Big Ten, it really became more evident with each and every passing day this year. Whether it was academic scandals, or player arrests, or just an overall unwatchable brand of football, Kyle Flood proved he has no business being in charge of a team at this level. Everything broke right last year. Rutgers won the games they should have and lost the games they shouldn't have. They overcame a 25 point deficit to beat Maryland on the last game of the season, and ultimately won themselves a bowl game in convincing fashion. This season was everything last season wasn't. Everything went wrong, and it's fitting that it was capped off with that very same Maryland team reminding Rutgers fans what this team has been under Kyle Flood. Disappointing, inconsistent, and undisciplined (both on and off the field). All problems that are a direct reflection of it's leader.
If you want to know why Kyle Flood needed to be fired then look no further than his very own list of reasons that he shouldn't have been fired...
A couple of relatively meaningless bowl victories? A 3-way share of a Big East championship that Rutgers failed to win outright by collapsing down the stretch, even with a defense littered with future NFL players that Kyle Flood inherited? A Lambert Cup championship? What the fuck is that? It sounds like some weekend soccer tournament for middle school girls. GPA's? That's what we are hanging are hat on? Not only is that a ridiculous thing for a football coach to brag about, but it's blatantly false. Rutgers graduation rate has been on a steady decline ever since Kyle Flood took over. The following press conference sounds like a goddamn standup comedy routine. Like there should have been drums and a rimshot following 75% of his answers. Answers that were so far disconnected from the reality of the situation. You can't just repeat the same "1-0" rhetoric after your team just finished a season in which they went 4-8, and expect people to understand.
Ultimately, the aspirations of a program coming off it's second year in a Power 5 conference should be higher than bowl eligibility. Bowl eligibility that Rutgers so valiantly failed to achieve this year. They should be higher than simply competing, and in most of their games against actual high level competition, Rutgers didn't even do that. This program should be trying to work it's way up, not feeling complacent stranded in mediocrity. Kyle Flood represents mediocrity, and his acceptance of it, as well as Julie Hermann's, is what ultimately led to their termination. Well, that and enough off the field troubles to make people forget where Ray Rice went to school...
NJ.com- Laviano has fumbled a snap from center in five straight games, a streak that is equal parts maddening and baffling."It's frustrating," Laviano said.
"It's really frustrating. There's not really an explanation. The only thing there is is someone just owns that part of it. It's all about concentration and making sure stupid stuff like that doesn't happen."
"I want to say it's on me. I'm the quarterback, I'm responsible for those kinds of things," Laviano said. "But I think a lot of times that happens when guys are not confident or not confident in the call or whatever. But we'll straighten that out. It's been frustrating, but we're just going to have to learn from it at this point and make sure it doesn't happen."
"Those things, you don't want them to happen," Laviano said. "They rarely happen in practice. It's things that pop up that are just out of the ordinary that make situations like that happen. You try to your best to make sure everything goes smooth, but the reality is it doesn't happen in the game. Things pop up and you kind of have to just play football, whether it's my fault. You just have to control that kind of situation with confidence and unfortunately that's been happening to us too many times."
Whew, well that's a relief. After 5 straight games of Chris Laviano failing to complete the most minimalistic expectations of a quarterback I was starting to think that he was content with his inability to do so. I got to say I feel much better knowing that he is actually frustrated. Sometimes it's hard to tell whether or not he really cares when he's out there dropping balls all over the turf and throwing for like 52 yards per start. I honestly can't believe it took him this long to acknowledge it. Come on Chris. The fans just need to know that you get upset when you continue to piss away any opportunity of competing in important football games. Knowing you're actually aggravated is sure to settle them down.
Hey Laviano, do you WANT to say it's on you, or are you actually GOING to say that it's on you? I don't want to put words in your mouth, but it sounds a lot like you are ready to blame other people, and if that's case I will fly back early for Thanksgiving and give Rutgers another home invasion and aggravated assault to worry about. These things happen when guys aren't confident, huh? Gee, I wonder where that lack of trust could be stemming from. It's probably not from the quarterback that can't throw the ball more than 15 yard downfield without a running start. Don't tell me that fumbled snaps are out of the ordinary when they are literally THE ONLY thing that Rutgers has been able to consistently "accomplish" on offense with you at quarterback. That's the very definition of something being ordinary. I know it's not ALL your fault that this program's "brain"-trust refuses to put you on the bench where you belong, but please, for once, take accountability for all the dumbass mistakes that are blatantly your fault. If you aren't going to do the right things on the field then at least say the right things off of it. Right now most Rutgers fans hate the Head Coach and pity the starting quarterback, but if the starting quarterback starts using others as a scapegoat he'll find himself right under the same bus as his biggest fan mighty fucking quick.
Jesus Christ, this whole program is disconnected from reality. The athletic department thinks Kyle Flood is a capable head coach while the fanbase is literally raising money to get him canned. The Head Coach thinks everyone is improving despite losing the last 3 games by about 100 points combined. The quarterback has no less than 10 fumbled snaps and doesn't think he's responsible for any of them. We're not talking about 3rd down conversion rate or turnover differential, we are talking about successfully reaching down and plucking the ball from the center's crotch. That's the focus of this team right now. This whole fucking program is going to hell in the hand basket. Let's just hope Laviano is the one delivering it, because then it will be sure to take forever to get there.
Rutgers Fans Now Have A 'GoFundMe' To Get Kyle Flood Fired, So Yeah, The Season Could Be Going Better
I would say this is a perfect representation of where Rutgers is as a college football program. I'm not sure it gets worse than fans taking hard earned money out of their children's college funds to put it towards getting the football coach at their alma mater fired, but I really hope I don't have to find out. As silly, and more than likely fruitless, as it is to donate money towards someone losing their job, I can't sit here and say that it doesn't seem necessary. I am not sure what will get the message through to the higher ups at Rutgers that change is necessary. An academic scandal didn't do it. Multiple arrests didn't do it. The success of a running backs coach while the Head Coach was serving his suspension for said academic scandal didn't do it. As of now, three consecutive laughable performances against the best the conference has to offer didn't do it. Maybe an outward showing of financial support (or non-support, depending how you look at it) is what the athletic department needs to see to understand that Kyle Flood isn't contributing at all to what they are trying to do.
I tried Kyle. I really did. No matter how many times you proved otherwise, I continually said you were a decent college coach. I don't know what made me do it. I think it was the players that were consistently standing up for you. Unfortunately whatever it was has came and went. I'm not about to break the bank to get you tossed out on your ass, but I'll you this. If that donation page gets within double digits of it's goal then I can think of far worse ways to spend my money. It will just be my attempt at purchasing insurance for my investment into season tickets that looks to be losing value by the hour.
It's not just the off-the-field stuff that has Rutgers fans up in arms. It's not just the on-the-field stuff either. It's the failure of each and every single aspect of Rutgers football. The offense, defense, and (gasp) even special teams are all shit. Even the character and academic standing of the players have regressed under Kyle Flood. It's certainly not all his fault, but as the Head Coach of a college football team he should know that he has to take responsibility for things that are out of his control. He hasn't even proven capable of taking responsibility for the things that are in his control. The program is taking on water. The Flood is imminent, and the one person we can be sure won't help us overcome it is it's namesake. Batten down the hatches, because if no significant moves are made this fanbase has shown that they will let their wallets do the talking. Wallets that constantly contribute to ticket sales and university donations. A couple grand in a GoFundMe won't be so funny when it ultimately means there are a few thousand less people showing up at games. Kyle Flood offers this University NOTHING other than a relatively cheap salary, and it appears that fans won't even take that as an answer anymore.
Donate Here To Kyle Flood's Termination
It's not that I don't see how a visor can be effective in the rain. I do. Obviously a hat would make more sense, but I can see how someone wouldn't mind their hair getting wet while keeping water out of their eyes. My problem with Kyle Flood's decision to wear a visor isn't that it lacks any rationale whatsoever, it's that I truly believe that he thinks a visor is meant to be rain attire. Hear me out. I have seen Kyle Flood coach plenty of games in perfect conditions. I have seem him coach through the brightest of sun and most beautiful of autumn day. Not once have I seen him wear a visor. Not a single motherfucking time. That means Kyle Flood has a visor that sits in his closet and only makes an appearance during rain storms. The guy's choice in headwear says everything you need to know about him, and that is that he is not very smart. At the VERY least, he's not very prepared. Next thing you know he is going to be showing up to the golf course in a beanie. I'm half convinced he would wear a blue bandana to a blood initiation. This fucking asshole would probably wear a cowboy hat to a hip hop concert. A bucket hat skiing. He'd show up dressed like the man in the yellow hat from 'Curious George' to a breast cancer convention. There's no longer anything level of stupidity that I feel conformable putting past him, because he can't even properly provide protection to his own, clearly empty, head.
I used to think Kyle Food was a nice, intelligent man that wasn't built to be a college football coach. I still supported him, because the players supported him, but I was skeptical about his ability to run a sideline. Then, with the ridiculously conspicuous way he went about trying to to get Nadir Barnwell reinstated, I was forced to assume that he's just as dumb as he looks, and sounds, a large majority of the time. That's why I don't trust his decision not to give Hayden Rettig an opportunity. That's why it seems like less and less of a coincidence that the only time Rutgers has played a major Big Ten opponent closely was when it's Head Coach was suspended. That's why he doesn't get the benefit of the doubt when he wears a visor in the rain. That's why Kyle Flood needs to be relieved of his duties.
Not just because he can't figure out how to cloak his own head, but because that picture speaks a thousand words, yet somehow they all sound like "I am just trying to give us the best chance to go
1-0 this week". Fucking Flood. Elmer fucking Fludd.
P.S. I'm half surprised that Flood didn't have a visor for his notepad. Wouldn't want whatever he scribbles down all game to get smudged. It's probably his nauseatingly repetitive cliches that he can't seem to remember. That cheat sheet gets altered and the postgame presser will sound like a speech therapy class.
Oh, don't get me wrong, that doesn't mean I have stopped watching. The complete opposite is true, as a matter of fact. I am the upmost authority on Rutgers level of watchability because I watched every snap of a 49-7 blowout at the hands of Ohio State. I sat, well mostly stood, in the Wisconsin student section in the pouring rain as thousands of drunken students talked about how awful Rutgers was. The worst part? I had nothing to say. They were right. Rutgers is terrible. So terrible that at the 8 minute mark of the 4th quarter I did stop watching. Mostly because I wanted to explore the Madison bar scene, but also because Rutgers offensive futility and defensive ineptitude made it feel like I was standing in the rain for a day and half. I never want to give up on my team, but my team has given up on itself. This program is content being mediocre. It's content celebrating wins over middle of the pack Big Ten teams. It'c content getting absolutely EMBARRASSED by the the conference's traditional powers. I can't make Rutgers care about helping it's football program grow, none of the fans can, so the emotion that has come over the Rutgers faithful isn't anger, it's not sadness, it's worse than that. It's apathy. Apathy that closely resembles that of it's Head Coach. Apathy that closely resembles that of it's athletic department, that refuses to fire said Head Coach.
I'll be watching next week, and I am not the least bit excited. A road game against one the of the best defenses, possibly the best, in the nation? Michigan is going to chew Rutgers up and spit them out because they aren't even worth the calories. Chris Laviano, may be the nicest kid in the world. He may be a great football mind. He may have a fantastic grasp of the offense. All of those things are possible, but we will never find out because he is not physically gifted enough to put those potential tools to work. The opposition doesn't even need safeties because he can't throw the ball past ten yards. I'm not trying to be mean. I feel bad for the kid, because he's being put in an impossible situation. His offensive line hasn't been good, but even if it was, he doesn't have the arm to open up this offense. That's even clear to the most casual of fans. To compound that issue, his confidence is all but dead. That's evidenced by his minimum of two fumbled snaps per game. I wish the kid the best, but he is not gaining anything from the playing time he is being undeservedly given. If anything he is regressing because of it. We are talking about a starting offense that has put up 3 points over the past two weeks combined. A starting offense that has been OUTSCORED by it's own starting defense. A starting defense that has given up 95 points over the last two weeks. You can't even make up numbers that ridiculous.
Do I know is Hayden Rettig is any good? No, I don't. I know he has the POTENTIAL to be good. Potential that Laviano simply doesn't have. Rettig could come in and throw 12 interceptions and the result could be just as bad as it has been. However, given the glimpses that Rettig has shown in mop up duty, there is a reason, even if it's an EXTREMELY small one, to think that is not the case. At this point, there's not a team in the country that wouldn't give their backup quarterback a legitimate chance to succeed, especially one with the same amount of eligibly and an unparalleled level of physical ability to the starter. These guys were "supposedly" neck and neck all training camp, and now one is falling directly on his face. It doesn't take a genius to see that there what needs to be done. Trust me, there is nothing else to lose, because Kyle Flood has already lost the faith of his fanbase, and I truly don't know if the higher ups have what it takes to get it back.
I want to laugh, I really do. If it wasn't the Rutgers cannon crew sitting there miserably waiting to fire the fucking cannon for the first time more than 59 and a half minutes into the game I would find it hysterical. Alas, it was Rutgers, and it's a lot less funny knowing that I was only a colonial suit and a funny hat away from looking just like those guys by the end of the game Saturday night. That game was humbling. That game was demoralizing. Shit, that game was aging. It legit felt like that 3 and a half hours lasted 2 decades. I bet when that game started those grumpy old men were strapping young lads. I bet when Rutgers drove down and missed that field goal to start the game these guys were young, battle ready recruits, and by the time the second half started they were already grizzled old war veterans.
I don't care how silly these guys looked, because all Rutgers fans that watched the entirety of that game looked nearly as silly. Just sitting there watching their (our) team get completely out-coached and outclassed in front of a national audience. Just sitting there miserable waiting for one single thing to get excited about. That's what that touchdown, with just seconds left on the clock, was to all Rutgers fans. Not only was it a reason for a couple reenactors to do their favorite thing in the world and fire that cannon, but it was a reason for fans to say "okay at least we saw something positive". It was just a meaningless touchdown in the waning seconds of a game that was all but over nearly two hours prior, but it was a way to semi-justify wasting a Saturday night. That little bit of energy that these guys showed when Rutgers finally put some points on the board? The same amount of energy I put into chugging my beer simultaneously. It wasn't out of happiness, it was more just out of relief, because by the end of the 4th quarter I don't think any of us really thought it was going to happen.
Could I talk about how Kyle Flood should be fired for not being able to get his team up to play against against the #1 ranked team in the nation (and for about 1,000 other reasons)? I suppose I could. Could I talk about how the flashes shown by Hayden Rettig in the second half lend credence to the idea that Chris Laviano is drastically limiting this offense's potential? I suppose I could. However, I won't do either of those things, because at the end of the day it's not going to change anything. Kyle Flood is still going to be the Head Coach. Chris Laviano is still going to be the starting quarterback. Rutgers football is still going to be better than awful yet way worse than good. It's still going to be a middling program that's stuck in the mud, and I'm just not sure if I trust the people responsible for changing that to actual do anything to change it. A failure to progress is essentially the same thing as regressing, and if that's the case then this team has been regressing since Kyle Flood took over.
P.S. I legitimately hope the stupid nut mascot went deaf, and I'm not totally convinced the outcome of that game wasn't rigged because Urban Meyer has a book coming out. That timing is just too convenient. Just something to think about.
Controversy. Give me more of it. I NEED more of it. Ohio State isn't in your corner Cardale. They don't care about you. You should have went to the NFL when you had the chance. They used you because you were their only chance at a National Championship, and now they are throwing your broken and bruised ego to the side like last year's version of 'Madden'. Braxton Miller? Isn't that the guy that used to be good for them like 5 years ago? What are you still doing there Brax? They are never going to let you throw the ball. Transfer. Prove your worth as a quarterback. You won't. I knew you were too brainwashed by Urban Meyer to achieve your full potential. C'mon Zeke, you don't think you can do better than getting 15 carries a game? Urban Meyer doesn't want what's best for you. He is holding you back. He's holding you all back. Too many playmakers. Not enough balls to go around. Just killing your draft status one game at a time, one play at a time. Real men would start a mutiny, but what do I know, I'm just a guy whose seen you all perform far better than you have this season. Must be a coincidence.
This fucking Ohio State team man. They don't know what it's like to face their hardships head on. Best team in all the land. Supposed to be dominating their opposition and they cant even figure out who to start at quarterback. The hardest thing they have dealt with this year is trying to cover a fucking spread. Team is lucky it's got talent, because it certainly lacks gumption. Rutgers has had their whole fucking secondary arrested. They had their best player's entire college career put at risk. They had their Head Coach suspended for three games. They've faced a decade's worth of adversity in like three months, and they still came back from down 25 in the second half to beat Indiana by nearly as much as Ohio State did. There is something to be said for toughness, especially in a hostile environment. Rutgers may not have a future NFL quarterback or a defense that's worth damn, but they definitely have toughness. Toughness that Ohio State seems to lacking in every sense of the word. Please keep tweeting Cardale. Show me that weakness. Feed me that vulnerability. There's no way the image of Cardale Jones sleeping in until 3PM with a pillow pulled over his head doesn't provide Rutgers the mental edge that it needs to win. A house divided cannot stand. Someone has to bring it down, so let me ask you, why not us? Ready the axes...it's time to CHOP the Buckeyes down to size...
NJ.com- "I love New Jersey,'' Meyer said Monday during a news conference to preview Saturday's Big Ten clash at Rutgers. "I recruited there for many, many years."
'Pressed on why he "loves'' New Jersey, Meyer said New Jersey's high school coaches are "some of my favorite guys out there.''
"Personally, I love going,'' Meyer said. "I think it's very much like Ohio. I think the respect I have for the high school coaches, the seriousness they take, not just in coaching football, but you get those really good New Jersey high schools, I think it's a lot like here about the attention to detail, about the academic, about the character, about all the things that you look for, and that's normally what my history is. That's what you get out of New Jersey, and that's why we love it.''
Dear Urban Meyer,
I don't think you get how this works Urban. You can't just pop in for a visit or two with a recruit and start using the 'L' word in reference to New Jersey. You can't love Jersey unless you've lived there. That's written in stone. If you claim you hate it we'll tell you you don't know what you're talking about. If you claim you love it we'll tell you you don't know what you're talking about. The only proper response to "what do you think of New Jersey?" is "it's cool I guess". Jerseyians are very protective of the state they call home.
You don't love Jersey. This is like a girl your dating for 3 weeks hitting you with an "I love you". Love me? Bitch, you don't even know me. Urban Meyer doesn't know New Jersey well enough to be declaring his love for it. Just because he got a 4-star or 5-star recruit from here one time doesn't mean it's love. He's letting that one good experience cloud his brain. It's like dropping an "I love you" during sex. That shit doesn't count. That's lust, not love. We're in a long term relationship with this state Urban. You can't just ring it up at 3AM on a Friday looking to get your rocks off. Especially is you are going to start comparing it to Ohio. That's like complimenting a woman by telling her she looks like your chubby ex-girlfriend. Get that backhanded bullshit out of my face Urban. We're next to beaches and cities, Ohio is literally next to nothing. Cincinnati can suck my dick, Cleveland can suck my dick, LeBron can suck my dick, and so can you. The #1 team in the nation has got a price to pay when they enter the Garden State, and love don't cost a thing.
Whatever, this is exactly what I want to hear. You know how many Head Coaches have proclaimed their love for New Jersey and then proceeded to win there on a Saturday night in primetime? Zero. All this proves is that we are in Urban Meyer's head. He's got some fabricated soft spot for Jersey, and it's about damn time we penetrate it and make these naive Midwesterners submit in front of tens of thousands of the Rutgers faithful. Before you even ask Urban, it's Exit 9. Expect traffic and keep an eye on the rearview mirror, because them Rutgers boys are coming for that ass.
Bitch, who do ya love....
I...I just...I don't...I have nothing. I can't even fathom how I am supposed to fit an analysis of that game into one post. It's probably deserving of at least 3-4 blogs all featuring a vastly different attitude and tone. If you asked me to script my feelings after the first half they may have actually read like the thoughts of a rational, mild mannered human being. If I were to start writing during the third quarter you would have sworn I had my laptop out on the ledge of a 20 story building with me. If you asked me to start typing with mere minutes left in the 4th quarter it would have been a completely blank slate. Partly because I was in shock, but also because by the end of that game there were so many words for it that there were truly no words for it at all. I started the game wanting Head Coach Kyle Flood fired. By the end of the 3rd quarter I wanted him tarred, feathered, and burned at the stake. When the clock hit zeros, for a brief second, I wanted him canonized. Now, I still think he should be fired, for reasons I have already gotten into, but holy shit did Rutgers refusal to give up breathe life back into a program that was on life support.
Listen, as Rutgers fans, we don't have to lie to ourselves. As impressive as that comeback was, it was just as much a product of Indiana having a collective stroke as it was Rutgers playing flawless football. I mean, for fuck's sake Rutgers missed two extra points and failed on two two-point conversions. An Indiana botched punt and two incredibly ill advised throws were instrumental in helping Rutgers overcome it's own futility to reign victorious. With that said, Rutgers fans shouldn't feel any less ecstatic about this win.
This is a season that was marred by negative publicity and countless arrests before it even began. A season that has seen a head coach get suspended for basically editing papers that a 7th grader should be able to write. A season that saw Rutgers best player face the potential end of his college career for something he didn't even do. A season that has featured a fanbase wide quarterback controversy that the coaching staff apparently doesn't even know about. A season whose one highlight, a hard fought loss against Michigan State, ended in the most 'Rutgers' way possible with a 4th down spike. Let's just say that the sun hasn't exactly been shining on the Rutgers faithful. In fact, the last few months have been a pretty trying time to justify supporting this team. So while Indiana contributed as much to their collapse as Rutgers did to their own triumph, I refuse to make any apologies for how that game turned out. Not now, not never. We needed this one.
The stats are unbelievable. I was trying to find the shortest way possible of telling my brother what happened during the game. "Rutgers was up 27-24 at half, down 52-27 towards the end of the 3rd, and won 55-52 on a last second field goal". Uhh, what? I could just see the confusion on his face receiving that text. That's how little sense that one sentence breakdown makes. A 28-0 run, answered by another 28-0 run, ALL IN ONE HALF OF FOOTBALL. It's only made more nonsensical by the fact that the latter was completed largely without the help of the freakishly good Leonte Carroo. Before his injury he proved why he's a Rutgers great. Robert Martin proved why he needs more carries. Chris Laviano proved that he can, at times, actually be a capable college quarterback. Paul James proved that he has exceptional hearing, because as soon as I started bitching about him getting carries he busted off a game tying touchdown run. The defense proved that even in a game when they look less than incompetent they can still make plays when it matters most. The coaching staff proved, at the very least, that it won't let this team quit on itself. Most importantly, Kyle Federico proved that the only thing a couple of missed extra points does is set the backdrop for the most unlikeliest of redemption narratives.
Rutgers wins! Rutgers wins! I honestly don't know how the FUCK it happened, but Rutgers wins!
The Worst Thing That Can Possibly Happen To Rutgers Football Is To Get Their Head Coach Back From Suspension
Who would you want coaching your college football team?
A) A coach that repeats the same nauseating cliche in every press conference he's ever given. A coach that preaches the importance of doing things the right way, yet went behind the university's back and still failed to help his braindead player make the grade in a class that is one step above a 2nd grade education. A coach that stresses the concept of a football team being a "family", but put the well being of one player (who clearly didn't care about the team anyway) ahead of the well being of the team. A coach that has proven to be mediocre, at best, at in-game decision making. A coach that hardly ever interacts with his players during the game. A coach that spends 90% of the time in between plays presumably scribbling down the making of his future memoirs. A coach that has shown that sometimes the moment can be too big for him. A coach that has proven that the only thing he can consistently get out of his team is inconsistency.
B) A coach that actually has a personality. A coach that gives new, insightful, and passionate answers to every question. A coach that isn't afraid to interact with his players during the game. A coach that makes sure to compliment and congratulate his players after big plays. A coach that isn't afraid to discipline his players during the game. A coach that will take the blame for his players after the game, even if it wasn't remotely his fault. A coach that took over the coaching duties under the most dire of circumstances and has improved the team every single week he's been at the helm.
The first coach is Rutgers Head Coach Kyle Flood, the second coach is Rutgers Interim Coach/ Running Backs coach Norries Wilson, and I fail how to see how the former is a better option than the latter. I know there is a lot more that goes into coaching than what we see on the sidelines, but if that is any indication than I feel much more comfortable with Wilson leading this team than Flood. Only as a Rutgers fans could the head of your program get reinstated and make you long for the days when a glorified position coach was running the team. One day, hopefully soon, the coach that lacked any and all subtlety in circumventing university rules will get fired, and when he does Norries Wilson just might make a hell of a replacement.
Sorry drunk, shirtless college student, but the only thing that Kyle Flood should be freed from is his duties to Rutgers University and their football program...
Let's get this out of the way. Those jerseys? With those helmets? FIRE. Impossible not to play well while looking that fresh. If Rutgers can take anything away from their hard fought loss against the #4 team in the country it's that they should wear all black every single game and petition the Big Ten to play all their home games at night. Guaranteed to contend every year with those gameday conditions.
I know Michigan State has been underwhelming as of late, but they are still top 5 team. This Rutgers team wasn't supposed to play them to within one score. The team that is starting a secondary that is almost entirely brand new, for reasons we have discussed ad nauseum? The team that is without it's head coach? The team that lost to a bad Washington State team at home? The team that was never in the game against a mediocre Penn State team? The team that made a comfortable win versus Kansas as uncomfortable as possible? That team shouldn't contend with ANYONE that has a number between 1 and 25 preceding their name. Never mind a team with the offensive and defensive talent of a Michigan State.
When the front 7 wasn't completely shutting down the run, or getting to Connor Cook on the blitz, an inexperienced secondary actually ran step for step with the MSU wide receivers. In fact, the only plays they did make were just a product of better offense beating good defense. That't not what Rutgers fans expected going into this game. They didn't expect to successfully run the ball against a vastly superior front four. I can't imagine they expected Chris Laviano to play a relatively flawless game that included three touchdown passes. Sure, Leonte Carroo was back, but the talent difference between these teams isn't one future NFL receiver.
If this game was going to be close it was supposed be a byproduct of Rutgers taking advantage of them early. Not going down seven and answering right back with two quick scores. Not making a huge defensive play to take the lead into half time. This team wasn't supposed to survive giving up two touchdowns early in the second half. They weren't supposed to fight their way back to tie the game. I was supposed to be slugging beers in hopes of drowning my sorrows by the start of third quarter, not sitting on the edge of my seat until the ball hit the ground on a game clinching spike.
Hey, don't get me wrong. It was refreshing to see the team perform that well against some of the best competition in the country, but to be completely honest, it also scares me to death. They just played as well as they could have possibly played and it was in a losing effort. They are ripe for a emotional letdown, and this is a team that can't afford to not play their absolute best with their upcoming schedule. I know their wasn't a good chance that Chris Laviano's prepubescent arm was going to throw a game tying touchdown pass from the 50. However, spiking the ball on 4th down is just the most "Rutgers" way of reminding their fans that no matter how good they looked they are more than capable of looking equally as bad at times. Just the most sobering way to end a game that could have had Rutgers fans drunk with optimism. Let's hope they can carry some sort of buzz into Indiana, because the team I watched on Saturday might actually have something to offer as far as entertainment value is concerned. That's a far cry from what they offered to start the season.
The game just wouldn't have felt complete without one "fuckin' Laviano"...
In Shockingly Unshocking News, It Looks Like The Assault Charges On Leonte Carroo Are Getting Dropped
Yahoo- A judge has lifted a temporary restraining order filed against Rutgers wide receiver Leonte Carroo after a woman he was accused of attacking said she didn't think it was necessary.Carroo and the woman also signed a consent order Tuesday in New Jersey Superior Court to have no contact with each other. They also planned to appear in Piscataway municipal court later Tuesday to get simple assault charges against Carroo dropped.
Carroo was accused of attacking the woman after a football game last month and slamming her onto concrete. The woman received injuries on her hip, hands, elbow and head.
Carroo was suspended from the team. His lawyer, Peter Gilbreth, has said he plans to petition the school to lift the suspension so Carroo can return to the playing field.
Wha...what?!? You mean the girl that was so adamant about being body slammed onto the concrete by Leonte Carroo ALL OF THE SUDDEN doesn't think that pressing charges is necessary? The scorned woman that was seen on video attacking Leonte's girlfriend with a group of people wasn't an innocent victim? Well, I never saw this coming. I genuinely thought that Leonte was going out of his way to practice his WWE moves on unsuspecting women in front of a large crowd of people just minutes after a college football game. I guess now I can see how that sounds far fetched, but it seemed totalllllllly reasonable at the time...
I said it before, and I will say it again. Leonte Carroo was a captain of the Rutgers football team and has the potential to be a very good NFL player some day. The fact that he put himself in this position means he's not completely innocent. With that said, I will never understand how someone could try to ruin someone's entire life strictly out of spite. Forget Rutgers football for a second. Regardless of how this all plays out, this incident will continue to haunt Leonte Carroo for the rest of his career, whatever that career happens to be. You just don't hear someone's name associated with domestic abuse and ever think about them exactly the same way ever again, no matter what a judge has to say. As a selfish fan of Rutgers, I hope Carroo is reinstated because it's a pleasure to watch him play. However, if he isn't I hope he is able to shed this label that has been fraudulently placed upon him. Outside of this one transgression, he seems like a relatively good kid with a bright future. Hopefully a scored woman didn't ruin that for him.
Keep your fingers crossed Scarlet Nation...
Do you even onsides, bro?
I tried to be happy. I tried to enjoy the win. I tried to accept it for what it was, a comfortable double digit victory against a terrible opponent. Alas, this team finally came out for the second half and all of that contentment went directly out the window. All that positive energy I had fraudulently built up in hopes of not sounding like an unbearable pessimist got released in what I am sure sounded, to my neighbors anyway, like a domestic dispute at a construction site. I don't want people to think that I don't appreciate the win. Trust me, with how few and far between they have been this football season (college and NFL), I treasure every opportunity to reign triumphant. With that said, as far as frustrating victories goes, this just about tops the list.
I get it. I get that each game has it's own identity. I understand the '1-0' narrative that COACH (happy Norries?) Flood nauseatingly crams down our gullet every time he's not busy writing 'Dance Appreciation' papers for college kids that don't know how to read. I get that all Rutgers had to do to win today was line up and run the ball down Kansas' throat. I actually enjoyed it to an extent. Sometimes it's fun to impose your will on your opponent without taking too many risks. However, while it resulted in a win this week, what happens when Rutgers takes on the #2 team in the nation next week? What happens when they are in the heart of their brutal Big Ten schedule? I know they don't think they are running the ball for 300 yards against Michigan State. I know they don't think passes that cover no more than 6-7 yards are going to dissect one of the best defenses in college football. What then? Do we just give up? Pack it in? Continue to throw a quarterback, that quite simply cannot throw the ball at a D1 level, back out under center? Today may have been a win, but it's win that brought attention to everything that is wrong with this program from a football perspective.
It's a win that should have been a blowout if Rutgers had a quarterback that could take advantage of his weapons on the outside. If only. If only, out of 28,000 students, there were one that had a NCAA caliber arm. Hmm, I wonder, where can we find on of those....
Listen, I am not saying that Hayden Rettig is Brett Favre in his prime. Quite frankly, I don't know the extent of what he can do on the football field. I do know he can make one read and make a safe 7 yard throw. I do know he's not afraid to throw the ball downfield. I do know he can throw the ball out of bounds when he's under pressure. In fact, the only conceivable reason that Rettig isn't starting would be if he's really bad at handing the ball off, because that's pretty much all Chris Laviano did today. The guy doesn't need to walk on water to give Rutgers a better chance to win against the likes of Ohio State and Wisconsin. Today I saw what I have seen all season. A kid with a weak arm. That pads his completion percentage on throws that Drew Brees could make laying on his back with a torn rotator cuff. A kid that, even when given time, is understandably scared to test his arm strength downfield. A kid that his prone to mistakes that make Rutgers fans long for the days of Freshman Gary Nova. Chris Laviano is like an athletic Chad Pennington if Chad Pennington had the football IQ of a 12 year old girl, and not the one from 'Remember The Titans'. If Cardale Jones, the guy that won a National Championship, can get benched, then I think you can justify benching a kid that can't even give up on a play without throwing an interception. Nothing I have seen from this team makes sense. Chris Laviano plays like a game manager, but makes the mistakes that a game manager is supposed to avoid to earn the label "game manager". Rutgers threw for about 20 yards in the second half against KANSAS. They were afraid to drop back and pass against one of the worst football teams in a Power 5 conference. Now tell me, without making serious changes under center, how do they expect that game plan to translate next week? But hey, at least they got the W, right?
P.S. The throwback jerseys looked FRESH. I kind of miss them, and I think that officially makes me old.
P.P.S. Congrats to Norries Wilson on his first win as Rutgers Head Coach! Find myself wishing he was more than just an interim each and every day. Just don't tell him I said that...
NJ.com- Both sides agree that the incident began with a dispute between the alleged victim and Carroo's now-girlfriend, Maria Vega. The alleged victim previously had a dating relationship with Carroo.
Peter Gilbreth, the attorney representing Leonte Carroo in his criminal matter speaks with NJ Advance Media reporter, Brian Amaral, after proceedings at family court in New Brunswick. The first video shows a group of people arguing outside the Hale Center. Leonte Carroo isn't even in that video, Fetky said.
The second video was taken about 10 to 15 minutes later, and depicts a major escalation in violence. It shows that Vega was surrounded and attacked by women who, like the alleged victim, worked for Rutgers recruiting, Fetky said. The alleged victim approached the scrum and swung a purse at Vega, who was wearing white pants, Fetky said.
Fetky said the second video shows Carroo grabbing Vega and taking her away from the fight to protect her. But the video does not show Carroo assaulting the victim, because he didn't, Fetky said.
The victim said that she was attacked, unprovoked, by Carroo's girlfriend and others after a football game. As she was on top of Vega, pinning her to the ground but not hitting her, Carroo came up, grabbed her and slammed her on the pavement, she said.
Carroo "never laid a hand on her," said Peter Gilbreth, who is representing Carroo in his criminal matter.
You mean to tell me that the alleged victim wasn't just casually walking down the street by herself when this fight took place? You mean to tell me she wasn't just coincidentally waltzing on by the Hale Center alone when she was jumped by Leonte Carroo's mom, his girlfriend, and his girlfriend's family member? You mean to tell me this attack, that happened 45 minutes after a major college football game, wasn't completely unprovoked? You mean to tell me she wasn't completely uninvolved until she was assaulted?
Hey, is it too much to ask to get a goddamn police report? So weird how the picture gets painted differently when it's not the "victim" holding the paint brush. I am not saying that these choppy, at best, videos completely exonerate Leonte Carroo. Far from it as a matter of fact. However, they definitely show that that this "victim" wasn't a completely innocent one. I mean, unless you believe that she was "pinning her to the ground but not hitting her". Yeah, THAT sounds super logical. Pretty sure I have never ended up on top of someone without fucking them, or being a willing participant in a fight. Sorry hunny, you may have been wronged after you started the fight, but that doesn't mean you're not completely full of shit. Innocent people don't hit people with purses. Especially when the target in question is a Latina women. As a matter of fact, I'm pretty sure a swung purse is like the international symbol for girl fight. She knew what she was doing, and she, as well as the members of Rutgers recruiting with her, deserve to be charged with everything that their opposition was.
I said it once, and I'll say it again. Leonte Carroo was a goddamn idiot for letting himself get involved in this situation. If he did, indeed, cause physical harm to this woman then he deserves everything, and I mean everything, that comes to him. With that said, before we ruin his reputation, his season, and his potential NFL career, I am going to need more than a personal account of a scorned women that used to fuck him. Unless you were born yesterday you know that's the type of person that will say, and do, anything out of spite. The facts will come out eventually, and let's just hope that it's not Leonte Carroo that makes me look bad.
Leonte Carroo's Mother, His Girlfriend, And Her Family Member Are All Facing Charges Stemming From The Fight Outside Hale Center
NJ.com- Three people with connections to suspended Rutgers wide receiver Leonte Carroo, including his mother, were charged Tuesday for their alleged role in the altercation that took place outside the university's football headquarters on Sept. 12, according to a statement from Rutgers spokesman Greg Trevor.
Lavern Carroo, the 41-year old mother of the Scarlet Knights star player, was among those charged by the Rutgers University Police Department for simple assault and disorderly conduct related to an incident.
Also charged were Maria Vega, 20, and Juan Vega, 52.
Authorities alleged that their actions included general fighting behavior, specifically hair pulling and striking a victim in the face with a hand.
This is not the first time Lavern Carroo has been charged. According to court records, she pleaded guilty to third-degree theft by deception in Union County in 2001 and was sentenced to one year of probation.
Police have accused Leonte Carroo of slamming a woman to a concrete surface outside of the Hale Center after the team's loss to Washington State on Sept. 12, according to a complaint filed in Piscataway municipal court.
Carroo reportedly was intervening in an altercation between two women he has been romantically involved with. It's believed that Maria Vega had a romantic relationship with Carroo. Juan Vega's relationship to Maria is unclear. Both are from Fort Lee.
The alleged victim worked for the Rutgers football program as a recruiting ambassador, multiple people with knowledge of the situation told NJ Advance Media last week.
The alleged victim's father told NJ Advance Media that his daughter did not provoke the dispute. He said his daughter has a restraining order against Carroo, and has quit her job at the athletics department.
Well I'll be, don't we just have damn near the most unrealistic episode of 'Jerry Springer' ever fucking created on our hands with this one. A division 1 football player, his mother (that has been arrested multiple times before), his girlfriend, an adult male family member of his girlfriend, and the victim (a recruiting embassador that the player was supposedly also sleeping with). That cast reads like it would be part of the most dramatic soap opera of all time. Maybe one day when this is all cleared up we can learn to laugh at it, take this script to a studio to be translated into Spanish, and have it turned into some half decent daytime television. Okay fine, I guess that's not the greatest idea I have ever had. Not because it wouldn't be entertaining but because it wouldn't be plausible. This scene sounds like it's straight out of the WWE. Like Leonte Carroo was the 4th member of D-Generation X to run in from the tarmack and perform his finishing move on a helpless victim. It's like all that's missing was theme music and some entitled member of the McMahon family.
I am going to go out on a limb and assume that Leonte's mom, his girlfriend, and her uncle/father weren't taking the side of Carroo's sidepiece. That means there were three people yelling at, or engaging in physical contact with, one single woman? Yet, I am led to believe that Leonte felt his presence was so necessary NOT to help the victim that was clearly in distress at the hands of his loved ones, but to physically abuse the girl that was the 'handicapped' party in the handicapped match? Leonte needed to save the three people that were harassing one person so he suplexed the girl that was already at a disadvantage? Listen, I don't know what happened, and I don't claim to know what happened, but something about this whole incident seems fishy to me. I don't expect Leonte Carroo to play for Rutgers ever again, and with the way this season is trending it's probably best that he doesn't, but I can't help but think that he too was a victim. A victim of bad decision making, and a victim of the company he keeps. That doesn't excuse anything that he may have done to this woman. Just the fact that a captain of a Rutgers football team, that has already been through so much prior to this incident, put himself in this situation is an indictment of him. If he went as far as slamming a woman to the ground then he deserves every single punishment he gets legally AND from a career perspective. Still, Leonte Carroo doesn't strike me as the type of person that would savagely join in when a young woman was getting jumped, no matter what his relation to everyone else involved was. I could very well be wrong, and if there is video we should find out very shortly, but maybe, just maybe, the picture that has been painted isn't an accurate depiction of what happened that fateful night.
Rutgers Interim Coach Gave A Great Press Conference And The New Jersey Media Cried About It Like Little Bitches
The gall of Norries Wilson. I'll tell you, in all my years of not giving a fuck about what gets said at a press conference, I have never been as appalled as I am right now. Telling professional media members not to scream over one another? Making them attach their name and credentials to every stupid question they ask? Demanding respect for the man he's replacing by making a person refer to Kyle Flood by his job title? Refusing to expand on questions that he didn't know the answer to because he had yet to watch the game film? Commanding the room and answering every question asked of him instead of having a bunch of media members yell shit without raising their hand like the most chaotic third grade class in history? Who does this guy think he is? A Running Backs coach that was thrown into the fire of coaching in front of 100,000 people on three days notice? A man that is an Assistant Head Coach in name only because it makes the program look better when he takes over for the guy that got suspended for writing papers for a semi-literate student athlete that can't even pass 'Dance Appreciation' on his own? How dare he expect a bunch of headline hungry reporters to act like adults.
I can't believe that Norries Wilson wasn't completely receptive to earth shattering questions like "What was the day like?". Ryan from the 'Asbury Park Press' comin' in hot with that one. You almost have to try to come up with an inquiry that vague. What the fuck is the appropriate response to that? If I were Norries Wilson I would have told that entire room that I beat off 6 times that day to get rid of the game day jitters that i was experiencing from being forced into a position I wasn't fully prepared to handle. How's that for an answer Ryan. Hmm, let's see, any other great questions? Oh how about "are you having fun coaching the team that just lost by nearly four touchdowns?". Yes, Josh from the 'R Football Show, I am sure Norries is having a blast coaching a football team on Saturday when the actual coach is the one coaching them all week. I am sure he's like a kid in a candy store being the figurehead for a program in the midst of unprecedented turmoil. I am sure his promotion from worrying about 4-6 players to worrying about 100 players isn't at all overwhelming. I bet if you asked him before the season started if he wanted the entire starting secondary to get arrested, the All-Big Ten wide receiver to get suspended indefinitely for suplexing a woman, and the coach to get suspended for three games (but really just 3 days) just to give him a chance to run the team he would have gladly taken that trade off. I know it's hard to support for the New Jersey media to support the State University, but they shouldn't be surprised when a grown man in a precarious situation treats them like children when they asked childish questions.
I am as big a supporter of Rutgers giving Hayden Rettig a chance to play as anyone, but if you didn't laugh when Norries Wilson responded to the question "Why didn't Hayden Rettig play?" with "Because I didn't put him in" then you probably need something dead removed from your ass. That answer alone just made me want to rip the interim tag away from current job description. One press conference and already more straight forward and honest than Kyle Flood has been in any presser since he has taken over the program. They say that the most popular person in a football program is the backup quarterback, and while that may be true, Rutgers backup Head Coach is a close, close second.
There is a difference between being an optimistic fan and being a delusional idiot that is a glutton for punishment. That's why when I traveled the entire length of the country to attend a game in the middle of fucking nowhere Pennsyltucky I did so knowing that result would likely not end up being in my, and more importantly Rutgers, favor. I was fully aware that the 28-3 domination which I was "fortunate" enough to witness live was fairly likely even before kickoff. I'm not saying that made it suck less, but in actuality, it kind of did a little bit.
Hey, you can't lose you entire secondary, your best player, and your head coach all within three weeks and compete with traditional powers in the Big Ten. It doesn't matter if the program is having a down year or not. They are still highly recruited kids playing against an inexperienced defense, an offense that doesn't have it's best weapon, and a coach that found out he was the coach three days prior. Those aren't excuses, they are facts, and they are facts that are going to make the rest of the Rutgers football season extremely hard to watch.
This is especially true if they continue to trot out a starting quarterback that may have the mental capacity to play quarterback at the Division 1 level, but certainly doesn't have the physical ability. You think I want to hate on a kid that can't even drink legally? You think I want to root for him to suffer a minor injury? I don't. I really, really don't. So how about we just call a spade a spade and give Hayden Rettig a shot. I'm not saying he's Joe Montana. Shit, I'm not even saying he's Gary Nova. However, he is a kid that battled tooth and nail all through camp and finished in a dead heat to be the starting quarterback. He may falter just as much as Chris Laviano, but he won't falter because he can't throw the ball far enough or hard enough.
There have been people clamoring that Laviano looked decent against Penn State. They'll throw out completion percentages and the fact that the offensive line failed to adequately block for him. That may be true, but I'll tell you this. A player that has been directly responsible for 4 turnovers (and it should probably be 6 if opposing secondaries spent 5 more minutes on the jugs machine) and one touchdown over two games is not playing decent. A quarterback that puts up 3 points against mediocre Penn State team is not playing decent. It's pretty easy to maintain a high completion percentage when 95% of your throws are no more than 10 yard downfield. Chris Laviano threw with such a low velocity that there are times when I thought I could have made a break on the ball from the 20th row of the stadium. That's not necessarily his fault, but it's an extremely noticeable downside. I respect Laviano for giving it his all, but at this point, it's doing the rest of the Rutgers team and fan base a disservice to not at least see what you have sitting on the bench. Obviously, the most popular player on a struggling team is always the backup quarterback. However, in a season surrounded with sooo much negativity, the sole glimmer of hope is a player that has proven he is just as deserving of an opportunity as the player that is currently pissing his opportunity down his leg. As Rutgers fans we have not had much, if anything, to celebrate over the course of the last month. At least give us a chance to see one of our non-incarcerated players perform, especially since the player in front of him has not done so to this point.
This kid may not have 'it', but just by looking at this picture I can say that if he doesn't then no one on this roster does...
Rutgers Suspends Head Coach Kyle Flood For 3 Games Following Investigation Into Interaction With Faculty
NJ.com- Dear Members of the Rutgers Community:
Since our University was established almost 250 years ago, Rutgers has grown to become the State of New Jersey’s premier public institution of higher learning. With that designation, we have an obligation to provide outstanding educational opportunities, to ensure high quality and productive research, to serve the local, national and world communities, and to do so with integrity and a steadfast commitment to the central academic mission of our university. It is in this context that I provide you with the following report.
Below is a brief summary of some of the major findings:
I believe that the discipline is severe and justified for his failure to follow policy. I met with Coach Flood this afternoon and informed him of the suspension and the fine and he has accepted responsibility for his actions and my discipline. As a member of the faculty and as a former Provost myself, I know that Coach Flood’s actions in communicating with the faculty member crossed a line that all faculty hold dear. Our faculty must have complete independence in executing their duties and there is a reason why we prohibit athletics coaching staff from discussing the academic standing of students with faculty. We have policies in place to protect academic integrity and to ensure that any faculty member, whether tenured or untenured, whether full-time or part-time, is free of intimidation and interference by outside parties.
As a result of today’s findings, we are working with outside counsel to determine if any National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) bylaws have been violated. During the course of the investigation, we informed the NCAA Enforcement staff and we will be working with them on next steps. We will participate in the enforcement/infractions process per our conditions and obligations of membership in the NCAA.
I have also asked Director of Athletics Julie Hermann to ensure that our compliance training and oversight regarding the athletics staff prohibition on inappropriate contact with faculty regarding a student-athlete is among the best in the nation.
We have high expectations of every member of our community and no one is free from responsibility. We must use this opportunity to grow, to do more and to do better. And we will.
Of course. Of course, what many thought to be, the most minor in a grocery list of transgressions turns out to be something more. Why wouldn't it? Why wouldn't it take Rutgers take three weeks to investigate the interactions that the Head Coach of the football team had with a faculty member? Why wouldn't it come out two weeks after the whole secondary got arrested for assaulting students and invading homes? Why wouldn't it get wrapped up just three days after the captain of the team, Leonte Carroo, got arrested for domestic abuse? Why wouldn't it come less than 24 hours after ESPN aired a special ripping into the integrity of the Rutgers football program? Why wouldn't it come 24 hours before I fly cross country to go watch Rutgers play Penn State? Am I in the middle of a nightmare? Will someone, ANYONE, give me a pinch so I can wake up shivering in a cold sweat? Anything is better than this.
Okay, so there you have it. I defended Kyle Flood's right to e-mail a professor in an attempt to help a student athlete earn a better grade. Turns out ::cue Maury:: that was a lie! I guess my only question now is why the fuck are we suspending him for three games? Is it so we can face more public ridicule when he comes back in three weeks? Is it to hold us over during a season that he will likely, scratch that, should likely be fired after? Just rip the fucking band-aid off. Let's bang out all this media scrutiny at once. If any Rutgers football players want to commit any crimes of any kind, please do so right now or forever clutch your Bible. Why put lip stick on a pig? The ship in sinking, suspending the coach for 3 fucking games is nothing more than trying to pour buckets of water over the side of the Titanic.
The roof is caving in, why patch it up with duct tape, when we can just burn it to the fucking ground and start over with a new (or old, Cough-Schiano-Cough) renovator?
Kyle Flood deserves to be fired. Not because of some cultural flaw in the program. Not because his players are a bunch of buffoons and got locked up. Not due to a lack of institutional control. He deserves to be fired because he interfered in academics. In an effort to go above and beyond for his players he went wayyyyyy beyond the letter of the law. If athletics and academics are truly that seperate then there is no reason to give him a three game slap on the wrist. He intentionally circumvented the intent of higher education. He tried to help a student get a grade he didn't earn so he could play football. I was wrong. The e-mail wasn't innocent. The meeting, that I just found out about 5 minutes ago, wasn't innocent. He needs to lose his job, and with the backdrop of six arrests and a firestorm of backlash, there is no better time than now. Yes, I hate the fact that it would come just a day after the ESPN special, but I ultimately hate the fact that I will have to hear about this ALL SEASON even more. Give these kids, the ones that haven't done a damn thing wrong (yet), a chance to succeed under someone else's tutelage. They have already been through enough. I can barely take anymore of this, I don't know how 18-22 year old players that are actually a part of the program are handling it so well.
I still don't think Kyle Flood is a bad person, but he fucked up, and more importantly he KNEW he was fucking up while he was fucking up. To whom much is given, much is expected, and he didn't meet those expectations, so now he has to suffer the consequences. In a way, it's actually a good thing. He's in way over his head, and the water is only rising. There is no way he successfully comes out on the other end of this. Just put him out of his misery. No man, short of one that covers up child molestation (yesssss, still snuck in a Penn State joke on game week), deserves the amount of ridicule that Kyle Flood is destined to get if he remains the Head Coach of this team following his suspension. Hell, at this point he probably fears falling asleep knowing that every day for the last 3 weeks he's woken up to terrible news. He's like a handful of games from PTSD or a mental institution with all the shit he has been through, and since he is blatantly responsible for some of it, let's see if we can save him of that fate. That's what a real FAMILY would do.
Oh brother, where art thou....
What an informative television program. Did you guys know that a basketball coach physically and verbally abusing his players relates favorably to a bunch of enigmatic 18-22 year old kids going out and making stupid decisions? Pretty obvious to me that they are essentially the same thing. Ray Rice hit a woman in an elevator years after he went to college at Rutgers. How could that not have something to do with Leonte Carroo getting arrested for simple assault and domestic violence while at Rutgers? I bet they studied their abuse of women under the same professor. This is clearly a cultural problem. How dare you try to tell me that three separate instances, over the course of two and half years, that involved either employees, students, or alumni of a University as big as Rutgers doesn't show a lack of institutional control.
Listen, I am a Rutgers graduate, a Rutgers season ticket holder, and most importantly, a Rutgers fan. I am embarrassed by what has transpired over the last month. I was embarrassed when the video of Mike Rice winging basketballs at his players heads surfaced. I was embarrassed when I saw Ray Rice, a player I used to root for on a weekly basis, drag his fiancées lifeless body out of an elevator. It is embarrassing, there is no doubt about that. However, I don't need someone that has probably never been to the school that I called home for 5 years (no judgement necessary) to tell me how bad of a place it has become. I don't need Bob Ley, and a bunch of people unfamiliar with the university, telling me how corrupt they are from the top down. I don't need a man that has no factual information telling me that the values of Rutgers athletics have undergone a drastic renovation in an effort to become more relevant athletically on a national scale. Does ESPN have some camera behind the scenes that shows that Rutgers has taken shortcuts in building their brand? Do they know for a fact that the practices of the program are at fault for these teenagers, that are experiencing freedom for the first time, breaking the law and soiling that very same brand? Or is it possible that a University that 28,000+ attend annually, and that thousands work for, just happens to have some people of questionable character? Hey, if Rutgers decides to fire Head Coach Kyle Flood then you won't get an argument from me, but it's not because I think he deserves it. Ultimately the illusion of "control" is just based on student athletes being smart enough to do the right thing. Rutgers is dealing with more controversy than it ever has, but it's not because the state of their athletics programs lends itself to such controversy. It's because people that they put faith in have compromised their trust by making dumb, embarrassing choices.
Pretty funny to hear these things from someone that is employed at ESPN. Hey Bob, was it a national embarrassment when Jameis Winston, an alleged rapist, was standing on an ESPN stage being celebrated for his athletic achievements? Quick question, in your unbridled deep throating of the SEC's dick, do you guys cover any of these schools?
That's so weird that Rutgers, a program that is a "national embarrassment", doesn't even sniff the top 25. In fact, even with the almost comical amount of Rutgers players being taken into police custody over the last few weeks, I am pretty sure we fall closer to the median than to the likes of Florida, Georgia, Florida State, and Alabama. You know, the schools that ESPN constantly lauds for their athletic programs.
I am not saying that the last three years haven't been embarrassing for Rutgers and the State of New Jersey. I would know better than anyone that they have been. However, all I am asking for is unbiased reporting from a group of people that are paid, and given a platform, to discuss social issues in sports. If Rutgers hasn't given the talking heads at ESPN enough newsworthy shit, over the course of the last month, to fill up a 30 minute time slot without having to revert to slandering their past then I don't even know how the show has lasted this long. If Rutgers is, indeed, a "national embarrassment" then college athletics, as a whole, are a national embarrassment. They are no worse than a number of other schools that happen to get more notoriety by the same company that continues to be ever so critical of Rutgers. I know that comes off as a "if your friends jumped off a bridge, would you?" comment. However, maybe I am just tired of Rutgers University, an institution that has continually had one of the highest graduation rates for student athletes, getting thrown to the wolves when there are so many other universities for ESPN to sink their teeth in to.