Rutgers quarterback Gary Nova left Saturday’s loss to Nebraska with a knee injury and did not return. Postgame, head coach Kyle Flood did not know the severity of the injury (Sargeant, Oct. 25).
“I don’t and I don’t even know if we will tomorrow,” Flood said. “I think we’re going to have to wait this one out a couple of days.”
Nova was hobbled on the sideline in the second half, but wore a headset. Nova’s injury came on the final possession of the half, a questionable decision to even try and score considering the drive started deep in Rutgers territory (Politi, Oct. 25h).
Chris Laviano played the second half for Rutgers and passed 4 of 7 for 49 yards.
Result: Nebraska (7-1) rolled over Rutgers (5-3) 42-24 in Lincoln on Saturday afternoon.
Need to Know: Nebraska’s Ameer Abdullah rushed for 225 yards and three touchdowns averaging 11.3 yards a carry as Nebraska handed Rutgers its second straight loss. Rutgers quarterback Gary Nova left at the half with a knee injury and didn’t return. Nebraska’s Tommy Armstrong passed for 163 yards and threw a pair of touchdown passes for the Scarlet Knights. For Rutgers, Leonte Caroo had 125 yards receiving.
Links: Box score| Recap
Next up: Rutgers hosts Wisconsin on Saturday.
SNY’s Chris Carlin talks with Rutgers football coach Kyle Flood about the Scarlet Knights’ 26-24 win over Michigan Saturday night.
Gary Nova’s 404 yards and three touchdowns in a win over Michigan were far from vindication for the much-maligned Rutgers quarterback.
Nova, who threw five interceptions in a loss to Penn State in the Scarlet Knights’ Big Ten opener in September, was nearly flawless against Michigan on Saturday night. His career-high in passing couldn’t have come at a better time.
Head coach Kyle Flood, who has stood behind Nova for three years, likes his senior quarterbacks toughness.
“I don’t believe in vindication,” Flood said. “I’ve talked to the team about that. You know, after our first loss of the season, I said to them, I said, you know, winning the next week doesn’t make up for it. You have to turn the page. You have to put your eyes forward. I think the team in general has done a good job of that. I think Gary has done an excellent job of that. I think he’s gotten better each week since that performance.
“What I do think that speaks to is how mentally tough he is, because there’s a lot of positions on a football team, but none of them are like being the starting quarterback, and I think he’s handled that position very well. He’s gotten better at it in his career, and I think this year, he’s done an excellent job. And again, coming off a couple weeks ago, what wasn’t a great performance, he’s put together three in a row where he’s gotten better and I’m proud of him for that.”
Nova, who has had his share of criticism for his play, had perhaps his finest moment on Saturday night.
“It’s great. It’s something you remember forever,” Nova said. “That’s the reason you play college football – for moments like that. It feels good because I played well and everybody played well around me. To get this done for Coach Flood and for my team is great. ”
The Scarlet Knights are now 5-1 and will play a gauntlet of games against the best the Big Ten with a game at Ohio State in two weeks.
Rutgers head coach Kyle Flood talks to SNY’s Chris Carlin about QB Gary Nova improving over the last 2 games, and also about the upcoming matchup with Michigan.
Paul James left Saturday’s 31-24 win over Navy with an apparent knee injury (NJ.com, Sept. 20) and for the second straight year could miss time with an injury.
Rutgers coach Kyle Flood is concerned about the right knee (Sargeant, Sept. 20) that was hit with a helmet. James was in crutches after the game.
“I don’t know if we’ll really know until tomorrow when he gets looked at,” Flood said. “I am (concerned). P.J. has been one of our better players over the last two years.”
Last year, James rushed for 881 yards and nine touchdowns despite missing four games with a broken fibula.
Result: The Scarlet Knights lost to the Nittany Lions Saturday at High Point Solutions Stadium in Rutgers’ Big Ten Conference debut.
Need to Know: Rutgers (2-1, 0-1 Big Ten) couldn’t overcome QB Gary Nova’s five interceptions. Penn State QB Christian Hackenberg led an 80-yard TD drive late in the fourth quarter. Bill Belton’s 5-yard run with 1:13 left capped the drive for the Nittany Lions (3-0, 1-0). The key play was a 53-yard pass from Hackenberg to Geno Lewis. Nova threw his final interception on Rutgers’ next possession. .. Defense and special teams nearly saved the Knights. Rutgers held Penn State to 100 yards in the first half and blocked a punt and a field goal. The Knights have blocked 39 kicks since 2009, tops in the nation. . . Jason McCourty replaced Ray Rice in the montage of former Rutgers players in the NFL shown between the first and second quarters. . . .The crowd of 53,774 set a stadium record.
Game ball: Hackenberg (24-for-43, 287 yards, 1 interception, 0 TD)
Links: AP recap | Box score
What’s Next: The Scarlet Knights visit Navy Sept. 20 (3:30 p.m.)