Coach Flood’s Expectations as Rutgers Begins Spring Practice
The Rutgers football team’s spring season begins today. With the Scarlet Knights joining the Big Ten next year, this spring is a crucial preparation time. Coach Kyle Flood addressed some of the pending questions on everyone’s mind after the less than ideal performance during the fall. Coach Flood showed eagerness for practices to begin and shared some of his expectations for the team.
“We don’t get very many opportunities to work with the players…it is something that we spend a lot of time preparing for and will certainly look forward to being out there with the players,” Flood said.
The Scarlet Knights will be holding open practice for public observation on Saturday, March 29. Fans will have a chance to come out and see the players, an opportunity offered regularly in preseason, but for the first time ever during the spring.
The main question on fans mind continues to be regarding the up-in-the-air quarterback spot. The starting quarterback position remained in question throughout the fall season. Chas Dodd is gone and the lone quarterback with any experience on the active roster is Gary Nova. Nova lost the starting job to Dodd late last season.
All eyes are on Nova and the remaining quarterbacks who according to Flood all have equal opportunity to prove themselves during the spring.
“I don’t know that I’ll put a time frame on when someone can ultimately win the job. I don’t have any set times in my mind in terms of naming a quarterback this spring so I don’t think it’s something we need to do as a program,” explained Flood. Certainly anytime you go out there to practice is an opportunity.”
Flood also later explained the influence of Ralph Friedgen on the ultimate decision of quarterback. Friedgen was hired as the teams new offensive coordinator this off season.
“I think when you’re fortunate enough to be able to hire somebody with his experience, it’s only natural to weigh his opinion very heavily,” said Flood.
Flood also mentioned switching some positions around including the switch of Kevin Snyder and Steve Longa at linebacker.
“It’s really where we think those players can be most productive,” commented Flood.
Coach Flood also commented on the expectations for running backs including Desmon Peoples, and Justin Goodwin. Also showing hope for Paul James to re-enter the mix before the end of spring. James suffered multiple injuries during the fall which put him on and off the injury list all season.
Flood mentioned other injures including Savon Huggins.
“I think long-term all four of them are going to be healthy (regarding running backs) it’s just a matter of when,” said Flood.
With just a few weeks remaining in the semester, the importance of these practices is evident before players take finals.
The NCAA only permits football 15 opportunities to practice during the off season, one of which is used for the team to play in the annual inter-squad game which has come to be known as the Believe Bowl.
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