Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Kiper on Leonard

In an chat (going on as this is being posted) Mel Kiper talked about do-everything back Brian Leonard.

Jason (NY): Mel, What did Brian Leonard's performance at the combine say to you about his prospect (TB/FB) and draft position status? Did his numbers and overall performance help, hinder or keep him level?

Mel Kiper: (1:32 PM ET ) I think he's a versatile fullback. He could be a one-back. He could be an H-back. There are a lot of ways to get him into the passing game. He's a versatile big back. He's not going to be ideal for every team. But if you have a coordinator and a defined way to work him into the equation. He's the kind of guy that certain coordinators that view as a guy that we need to bring in.

Check out the chat at

Coffee, Bagels (with cream cheese) and the News

A few interesting stories today, thanks to the wonderfully thorough web-spidering of David Miller.

• First, Peter King, Sports Illustrated columnist and NFL Insider for NBC, wrote an interesting column on the NFL combine. King compares the combine to the SATs, and brings up the changes in how prospects train for the combine. Brian Leonard and his decision to cut weight for the combine, is a main focus.

• Susan Lulgjuraj of the Press of Atlantic City wrote a nice story on Rutgers Basketball teammates Jon Mimmo and Jason Cherry.

• Targum writer (yes, we'll happily plug the school paper as well) Brian Johnson caught up with former Scarlet Knight Quincy Douby on the Sac Kings east coast swing this week.

• The Herald News' Keith Idec sat down with Mike Bionde of the Rutgers baseball team. Bionde has been bitten by the injury bug in his Scarlet Knight career, but is very optimistic about the 2007 season.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Coffee, Bagels and the News

The Scarlet Knights are all over the news. We've grown to the point where people all over the region and all over the country are covering us. People like to hop on the bandwagon, and we keep making space for them.

Every weekday, we're going to try and find those stories you may not have seen by opening your local newspaper. We won't waste your time with game recaps and notebook sidebars, unless of course it mentions something glowing about one of our student-athletes. This post will be full of stories we think fans will want to read about the Scarlet Knights. If you want to read the less flattering stories, buy the paper.

• C. Vivian Stringer took the high road in the growing exchange between Connecticut head coach Geno Auriemma and Scarlet Knight fans. The Record's Tara Sullivan, however, decided to fire back on behalf of New Jersey.

Keith Sargeant of the Home News had his own take on the situation.

• Just before signing day,'s Ivan Maisel sat down with Rutgers Football head coach Greg Schiano. His story on the success of the 2006 season, and what's to come in 2007, can be read here.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Men's and Women's Basketball Preview

With only two home games and one road contest left on the schedule for both teams, the Rutgers men's and women's basketball teams are looking to finish out their regular seasons strong. For the women's team, that starts tonight at 7:30 when they take on the Providence Friars at the RAC. The No. 22/23 Scarlet Knights (17-7, 10-3) come into the game tied with Marquette for second-place in the BIG EAST and are looking to hold on to that spot in order to clinch a first round bye in the BIG EAST Tournament, which is awarded to the top four teams. The Friars come into the game with a record of 13-13 overall (3-10 in the BIG EAST) and have lost nine out of their last 10. Rutgers has won 13 straight against the Providence dating back to 1997, and boast a 9-0 home record against them all-time.

The Rutgers Men's Basketball team (10-16, 3-10) is looking to make a late push for the BIG EAST Tournament with only three games left on their slate. The Knights currently are tied for 13th in the BIG EAST, but can help their chances of finishing in the top 12 and qualifying for the tournament if they can knock off Connecticut who is seated in the 12th spot with a conference record of 5-7. The Huskies (16-10 overall) will visit the RAC on Wednesday for a 7:30 tip-off. Rutgers took UConn into overtime the last time they met on February 3 in Hartford, and was without leading scorer JR Inman who will be in the line-up when the two teams meet Wednesday night. The game will be broadcast on FSNY, but with the temperatures warming up in Piscataway and only two home games left for both teams, it's a perfect time to come out and support both the Men's and Women's teams by rocking the RAC.

For more information on the basketball teams, check out

Monday, February 19, 2007

Rutgers weekend round-up

While the Rutgers men’s basketball team saw a rare weekend go by with no games, the women’s team traveled to Villanova, Pa., Saturday night to face the Wildcats at the Pavilion. For the second straight game, the No. 23/23 Scarlet Knights (17-7, 10-3) picked up a big win on the road over a Big East opponent, downing the Wildcats 62-32, a season-low point total for Villanova.

Junior Essence Carson led Rutgers with 16 points in addition to 12 rebounds for her fourth double-double of the season. Heather Zurich (career-best 13 points, Matee Ajavon (10) and Kia Vaughn (10) also notched double-figures for the Scarlet Knights, who now have just three regular-season games remaining before the conference tournament.

It was a busy weekend elsewhere for Rutgers sports teams, as both the baseball and softball teams took to the diamond for the first time this spring. The baseball team snagged the last two games of a three-game set against William & Mary on the road, including a 9-8 come-from-behind effort in the rubber match Sunday. Senior third baseman Tim Querns led the way with a 3-for-5 performance with four RBIs. Junior shortstop Todd Frazier moved into a tie for sixth place on Rutgers’ all-time home run list as he sent the 23rd of his career out of the park Sunday.

The softball team had a harder time this weekend, losing five total games at the Aggie Classic on the campus of Texas A&M this weekend. The Scarlet Knights faced Texas-San Antonio, Texas A&M, and Arkansas, nearly salvaging the final game against the Lady Backs after a Mallory Miller two-run home run in the sixth inning of the eventual 8-6 defeat.

On the track, the men’s and women’s indoor track and field teams competed this weekend at the BIG EAST Championships in Akron, Ohio. The men’s team finished fifth overall, while the women took 13th. Rutgers’ Marcel Coleman was named the Most Outstanding Track Performer of the event with his first-place finish in the 60-yard dash. His time of 6.81 seconds tied his previous school record, while the senior also took second in the 200-meters, stopping the clock at 21.49 seconds.

Rutgers also saw conference competition reach its peak in the water, as both the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams traveled to Hempstead, N.Y., for the BIG EAST Championships. The women’s side saw three new school and conference records, taking second place in the meet, while the men took seventh. The women’s 400 freestyle relay team of Madison Kennedy, Ashley Dunphy, Cat Whetstone, and Sarah Bicknell set a new conference record of 3:20.34, taking first place.

To round out the packed weekend, the Rutgers men’s and women’s tennis teams also saw competition. The women’s team (3-3, 1-1) split the weekend series, defeating Providence 7-0 on Saturday for its first BIG EAST win before dropping a 7-0 match-up to Brown Sunday. The men’s team (0-1) dropped its home opener against the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) by a score of 4-3 Friday, Feb. 16 at the East Brunswick Racquet Club.

Friday, February 16, 2007

A New Era of Internet (Sort of)

For years, has been among the best college websites in the nation. If you can imagine, we have one webmaster, Colin Osborne, who takes care of everything from posting releases to updating biographies to filming, editing and streaming video content. The Athletic Communications office writes the releases, notes, etc. Colin does the rest.

Part of the benefit of having an in-house webmaster is that we can do a lot of different things that the assembly line, seen-one-seen-them-all college websites can't offer. The re-design in advance of the football season was a big endeavor, and we hope you've enjoyed the new look and content of the site. Well, there is more to come.

First, we are unveiling this blog. It's going to be a less formal way to get you all the important happenings around the RAC, Hale Center, Yurcak Field and everywhere the Scarlet Knights call home. Consider this site the business casual to the shirt-and-tie format of our mother ship. This site will mostly be maintained by some of our finest student and graduate assistants, and will offer a lot of neat things. Yes, neat.

Thanks for stopping in. Seriously, check back all the time, as we're hoping to get a lot of fresh content up here, including a weekly recap of events, posts from some of your favorite student-athletes, live in-game running diaries and a whole lot more.