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2012 Rutgers spring game preview

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It is a gorgeous day in New Jersey today, which should lead to another superb Rutgers Day. The campus-wide event combines the long-standing Rutgers traditions of Ag Field Day and the New Jersey Folk Music Festival with a smattering of events around the other campuses, capped off with the Scarlet-White football spring game scrimmage on Busch.

Rutgers football head coach Kyle Flood has offered up measured praise of some of the team's younger players such as Miles Shuler and Max Issaka lately, but to the public eye, this spring offered little change from 2011 in that Rutgers looked very strong defensively, but not so hot on the other side of the ball. Reasonable explanations are abound - the defense is always ahead of the offense this time of the year, the weather, injuries on the offensive line. However, that still isn't really what people were looking for. The assumption is that the defense will be good, so them grabbing all of the accolades is getting a little old.

The fans in the stands today aren't looking for suffocating defense, and that probably won't be on tap regardless with the first teamers squaring off with the second stringers. No, we want Gary Nova firing bombs downfield to Brandon Coleman and Miles Shuler frantically grabbing a screen and taking it to the house. The people want to see Savon Huggins running through the defensive line like a bulldozer. The whole thing is not fair, and hardly realistic or representative, but that's the truth. With the spring game actually being a scrimmage with strong limitations on hitting, the chance that a game of effective flag football would break out were already high to begin with.

Now that the customers are craving offensive firepower, what's the harm in taking the reigns off and giving everybody what they want to go home happy? That means a shootout, with Mohamed Sanu and Brandon Coleman passing the breakout moniker to Huggins (or possibly Shuler.) The real work from this spring campaign is complete, having largely occurred away from the public eye. There are not critical reps at stake here today. In fact, the spring game is probably more for the fans than anybody else, with a chance to have lots of top recruits on campus an added side benefit. The past few months have been extremely trying by any possible standard. It is long since time for those flowers to bear fruit. Basically, give us our ice cream before bed. Even if completely vacuous of substance, the time is nigh today to just give everyone what they want.