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News and links roundup for 7/16

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  • There are rumors about walk-on tight end Tony Trahan transferring floating around the boards. Trahan played early as a true freshman last season, although I can't remember him playing later in the year. He really didn't see enough time to give any sort of impression of his future potential. At this point I'm just assuming the athletic department won't release any information on personnel moves until training camp starts. Regardless, Rutgers should be in decent shape at the position if D.C. Jefferson and Paul Carrezola live up to expectations.
  • Dave Wannstedt is publicly knocking Rutgers for its weak schedule last year. I can see how that would affect recruiting, but everyone has to play the same conference schedule. Good to see Wanny has so much free time on his hands.
  • Hamady N'Diaye is already being called the most likable player on the Wizards roster (video).
  • UNC football is under investigation by the NCAA. Any talk of agents is worth watching, although don't get your hopes up just yet.
  • The Tampa Bay Bucs are raving about DE George Johnson. If you look at TB's depth chart, they may be the thinnest team in the league at end, so this could be a very ideal situation for Johnson. I still think he was a draftable prospect caught in a flood of underclassmen declaring due to fears about the next NFL collective bargaining agreeable.
  • The Bucs also signed a veteran guard to compete with Jeremy Zuttah. Zuttah clearly has the edge in talent, and you'd think Tampa would want him to win the job, but he struggled last year. Apparently they want more size at left guard. Jeremy would be a better fit at center or right guard, but those spots are already filled by established players. In fact, there's even been some talk of playing Zeus at LT due to Donald Penn's holdout, although that's more of a long shot possibility. He definitely has the athleticism, but NFL tackles usually are a little taller.
  • The Florida Tuskers of the UFL have acquired Darnell Stapleton's rights, although that doesn't necessarily mean that he'll join them. Perhaps it could be a good fit though for Stapleton as he looks to prove himself healthy to NFL scouts. In other UFL news, Cameron Stephenson landed with the Hartford Colonials.
  • Is it possible to make a worse guffaw than College Football News yesterday touting a deceased recruit in its Notre Dame preview? On one hand, CFN almost certainly just must have had that preview queued for months and just didn't think to change that. The problem isn't really with that one mistake, it's more that CFN is not a very good publication. Although, for the record, their Rutgers preview from a few weeks back was generally non-objectionable, with only a few minor depth chart errors. It was mostly bland, Bleacher Report-esque "make sweeping generalizations from raw statistics and team rosters" copy.
  • Rutgers transfer Al-Majid Hutchins is projected as a starter this fall for Stony Brook.
  • 1B Jaren Matthews signed a pro contract with the Reds, which is unfortunate. He could have improved his draft stock by coming back and putting up bigger power numbers.
  • Yesterday Rutgers approved a 4% tuition hike as a direct result of drastically decreased state support. I highly suspect that the hike will go hand in hand with cranking up enrollment even higher, which is straining school infrastructure and having a negative impact on its academic selectivity.
    Several members of the Rutgers board questioned the priorities in the budget. George Zoffinger, who is nearing the end of his term on the board, criticized the growing amount of debt Rutgers has taken on and the nearly $11 million that comes out of the university budget to subsidize the athletic department. "I want to continue to raise the red flag," Zoffinger said.
    The athletic department will be an increasing target of criticism until it is less reliant on direct institutional support from the university general fund. BTW, good to see that Zoffinger's term is nearly up.