Michigan defenders, from left, Derrick Moore, Michael Barrett and Josaiah Stewart rush against Rutgers quarterback Gavin Wimsatt during the second half of Michigan's 31-7 win on Saturday, Sept. 23 2023, in Ann Arbor.

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Rutgers hopes to get back on track vs. Wagner

After its first loss of the season came in lopsided fashion, Rutgers will return home with the chance to get right against FCS visitors Wagner on Saturday in Piscataway, N.J.

When the programs met for the first time last season, Rutgers won in a rout, 66-7.

The Scarlet Knights (3-1) took a lightning-quick lead at No. 2 Michigan last week, scoring a 69-yard catch-and-run touchdown in the first minute on Gavin Wimsatt’s connection with Christian Dremel.
It was all Michigan from there, however, as running back Blake Corum and company rolled to a 31-7 win.

Wimsatt went 11-for-21 for 180 yards and the one touchdown and also threw his first interception of the year. He added 28 rushing yards.

“I just look at Gavin’s trajectory: As long as he keeps the nose up, he’s going to get to a level where we all want him to,” Rutgers coach Greg Schiano said Monday. “He’s learning every single game. … You can’t have any backslides. You can’t have any progress-halters right now because he’s on the climb and he’s got to continue to stay that way.”

Wagner (2-2 overall) sits atop the FCS Northeast Conference at 2-0 after a 30-27 win over Merrimack last week. The Seahawks led 17-7, but then fell behind twice before rallying both times.

Steven Krajewski’s 21-yard touchdown pass to Jaylen Bonelli put them up for good with 4:35 to go. Wagner made a goal-line stand to force Merrimack to try a game-tying field goal, but the snap was bad and the Seahawks held on.

“I can’t speak enough about our guys and the way they handled things,” Wagner coach Tom Masella told the school’s athletics website. “Today was the first day we faced a lot of adversity and responded on all three phases of the game.”

Wagner played another FBS opponent earlier this month, falling 24-0 at Navy. But Schiano doesn’t see a cupcake awaiting Rutgers.

“The last time they played here, they were coming off a 21-game losing streak, and now they are coming off a two-game winning streak and they are sitting on top of their league in first place,” Schiano said. “So (Masella has) done an incredible job building that program.”

–Field Level Media

Field Level Media
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