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News and links roundup for 2/1

  • Following up on LeGrand Sunday, John Haley's article on Eric LeGrand is an absolute must read for those wanting to get the latest updates on Eric.
  • Intermat has an interview with Mario Mason. Wrestling had to cancel the UVA match, but won handily over Navy. Rutgers still has two home matches left against ranked opponents in American and Lehigh. The Scarlet Knights should beat Lehigh on paper, but it's still very important considering that Lehigh won big last year, and is a traditional wrestling power. Wrestling traditionalists still don't have much respect for Rutgers, so a victory would do wonders for the team's reputation. Don't expect much of a gain in the rankings this week with #1 Penn State losing to Iowa yesterday.
  • Phil Steele says Rutgers ranks 42nd out of 120 FBS teams in terms of returning starters. Louisville and Syracuse stand out for being near the bottom, with UConn near the top. That's a reasonably good sign, although a lot can happen between now and September.
  • Mike Vorkunov quoted St. Peter's Prep coach Rich Hansen at the Savon Huggins presser last week, and Joe Dailey isn't happy at the implication he endorsed Rutgers and Frank Cignetti. That was not the classiest move by Dailey throwing a writer under the bus to save his own hide with the Tar Heel faithful. Years ago Dailey infamously spurned Syracuse for Nebraska, which ended up being bad for both parties after the Huskers dropped the option.
  • Tom Savage is considering Arizona as a transfer destination, although to what extent is unclear. That article's quotes seemed very non-committal. Won't be possible to handicap this decision until his appeal goes through.
  • By now you've probably seen the letter that UConn booster Robert Burton sent to their athletic director Jeff Hathaway, which read like something out of SEC country (immediately bringing to mind someone like Bobby Lowder at Auburn). Lenn Robbins had an interesting column about the influence that boosters (such as Lowder, Oregon's Phil Knight, or Okla St.'s T. Boone Pickens) can have over athletic departments. Honestly can't recall any Rutgers boosters ever getting much press scrutiny outside of Greg Brown's donation for the recruiting lounge, and Alex Kroll funding class sections for athletes (iirc, a Targum story).
  • Devin McCourty played in the Pro Bowl as a rookie. Devin picked off Matt Ryan during the game.
  • Shamar Graves tweeted over the weekend that he had a tryout with Philadelphia in the revamped Arena League.
  • Ohio State won't be hiring P.J. Fleck, as the Stan Drayton hire is official there. It's still hard to count on Fleck being in Piscataway for the long haul, so let's enjoy him while we have him. Charlie Weis is getting the ND band back together in Gainesville with Bernie Parmalee likely taking over for Drayton.
  • Paul Zeise is a skilled reporter, but can't help himself from being a huge jerk. Having spent time in both, Piscataway is far nicer than Pittsburgh. And I say that thinking that Pittsburgh is on the upswing and has made a lot of progress.
  • The Ledger looks at two future Rutgers women's basketball players from Neptune.
  • RU's endowment is up 10.7% over last year, from $545 million to $603 million (which is still painfully low). Hard to say how much of that is from the new fundraising campaign and how much is the stock market rebounding, although the gain was slightly below the national average.
  • New Jersey college students aren't graduating fast enough. Never got the people who didn't average out 15 credits a semester (or make up the difference in summer/winter), but maybe that varies by major.
  • The NJSWA banquet had a strong Rutgers presence.
  • Student athletic fees are receiving scrutiny in the Wall Street Journal.