Rutgers, playing with heavy hearts, couldn’t put it together after halftime.
One week after the tragic injury of tackle Eric LeGrande in their game against Army, the Scarlet Knights (4-3 overall, 1-1 Big East) fell to Pittsburgh (4-3, 2-0) 41-21 yesterday at Heinz Field.
Rutgers tied the game at 14 in the second quarter after a blocked punt was recovered by Brandon Bing. The second half was all Pittsburgh though. They scored 27 straight points in the third and fourth quarters to put Rutgers away.
The Panther running game dominated the Rutgers defense throughout the game. Pitt had 206 rushing yards, which was more than the Scarlet Knights had in total offense. Dion Lewis, the leading rusher in the nation last year, had 130 yards on 17 carries and one touchdown. Quarterback Tino Sunseri was sensational, going 21 for 27 with 307 yards and three touchdowns. Mike Cruz had also added two receiving touchdowns.
Rutgers quarterback Chas Dodd had a rough outing, going eight for 19, and only added 62 yards and an interception.
Of course the game was overshadowed by last week’s incident that still leaves Eric LeGrande paralyzed from the neck down. There was large support from everyone in the stadium for LeGrande. Recently, there was a trust fund put together by the college to help pay for his medical bills. Every Rutgers team member had the word “Believe” on their helmets in honor of him, while those on the Pittsburgh side had also signed a poster for him in support that said “Pitt Pulls for Eric”.
The Scarlet Knights have more than a week to prepare for their next game against South Florida on November 3 at Raymond James Stadium. If they want to move forward, both on and off the field, they must “believe”.
About the Author
Written by Chris Ryan
Chris Ryan is a Staten Island, NY native who recently graduated SUNY-Cortland majoring in sport management. At Cortland, he was the sports editor of the student-run newspaper The Dragon Chronicle for both his junior and senior year. He interned for the sports producer and sports anchor Bruce Beck at WNBC-4 Sports in New York City for their 6:00 and 11:00 news programs. Also, he interned this summer for the New York Jets as a sports writer for their website during their training camp which was shown on HBO's Hard Knocks program. Assignments included writing feature stories that were included on both newyorkjets.com and the Jets Playbook given out to the fans at the game. Chris is a Yankees, Giants, Knicks and Rangers fan.