The Good: They actually wrote this: “Who says there’s good news?”
The Bad: They also actually wrote this: “Coach Chris Ash is 0-9 in league play. Rutgers had the worst offense and defense in Big Ten last season” Yes, someone got paid to write that spot on analysis.
They also went on after the “Good News” and “Bad News” , in the column labeled “Our Call”, to write “Other than that, everything’s peachy.”
Yes, I paid $8.99 for the magazine so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.
Key players: Lindy’s was able to hold the presses until after Kyle Bolin’s transfer was finalized and they list him as the “Top Newcomer”. They list his stats which sound pretty good to me.
But, tbe biggest "whoo hoo, looky here" goes to Janarion Grant, who Lindy's list as the Top Alll Purpose Player. In the nation. In the All Purpose rankings the story is about Janarion Grant. Not him and then some other guys...him. The closing line of the piece: "Rutgers might not be must-see TV, but it's worth tuning in to see what Grant will do next."
Primary Strength: “Rutgers added a new offensive coordinator, plus skill position talent. The running back position should be fine with Edwards, Martin and Josh Hicks. With Grant, Rutgers has a chancd to score on every snap or opponent’s kick.” If only!
Potential Problems: I was actually scared to read this nugget. But it really just confirms what a lot of us thought. “The starters should be better than 2016, but there is a serious lack of depth on the defensive line, at linebacker, at cornerback, and along the offensive line — well, just about everywhere. This is a major rebuilding job for a reason.”
Recruiting: Lindy’s brought on 247Sports’ Steve Wiltfong to analyze the conference’s recruiting. So what we saw on NLI Day is reflected here, with Rutgers as the ninth best class for 2017. He points out that 18 of 26 signees are from New Jersey/New York and to “Keep an eye on 6-3, 225-pound quarterback Johnathan Lewis, he’s raw with a ton of upside.”
Overview: It doesn’t take a genius to write what they wrote....or to analyze their thinking. “Rutgers will be better, especially on defense, but it is a baby-steps mentality. Getting more playmakers on offense in (Bo) Melton and (Ahmir) Mitchell help, but more depth is needed. Several true freshmen will play key roles, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing for Rutgers’ long-tern outlook.”
Around the Big Ten: If you thought Lindy’s was snarky with us, catch their “Our Call” comment for Illinois. “Coach Lovie Smith must miss the NFL a lot.” They pick Illinois for last in the West. And they add this comment about the Illini: “Overall, the starters are suspect. And the depth is perilously thin.” Yikes.
Lindy’s thinks Northwestern is the “top sleeper” in the conference; they like Andrew Marty, the under the radar QB they signed in February.
Lindy’s predicted B1G East finish looks like this: 1) Ohio State 2) Penn State 3) Michigan 4) Michigan State 5) Maryland 6) Indiana 7) Rutgers They do not predict wins and losses.
Ranking Units: If you were looking for positive things, maybe the fact that we only play nine Big Ten games is one. From around the nation, the top Big Ten units:
- Backfield: Penn State (No. 1), Ohio State (6)
- Receivers: Penn State (No. 9)
- O Line: Ohio State (No. 7), Iowa (9)
- D Line: Ohio State (No. 1)
- Linebackers: Wisconsin (No. 9)
- DB: Ohio State (No. 9)
All Big Ten: Three guesses who from Rutgers made First Team as an “All Purpose” athlete....and the first two guesses don’t count. Janarion Grant - thank you, football gods - is there, as is Tariq Cole on their Second Team OL.
As with the other magazines, Lindy’s is in love with Ohio State. Seven players on the First Team, four on the Second, one on the Third.
Lindy’s has an “Honor Roll” section and the guy listed as Special Teams Demon is.....yeah, three guesses again.
National Rankings and the Big Ten: I said it twice already about Nick Saban and Alabama. Yeah, No. 1....again. In the Big Ten, Ohio State comes in at No. 3 with Penn State at No. 6. Wisconsin (11), Michigan (14), and -- surprise! - Northwestern (21) round out the conference’s preseason Top 25 candidates.
As for PSU, they say “There’s a chance the Nits will be favored 11 times - all except for the one in Columbus. Anything less than double-digit victories would be disappointing. A potential return to the Roses would mean a CFP semi. Don’t count’em out.”
All America Team: Five Big Ten players make Lindy’s First or Second defensive team while four make it on offense.
Interesting note: They list the top ten players in terms of their potential as NFL talent. Stop hoping, people. Didn’t you read all that stuff above? Four ae from Ohio State with two, Saquon Barkley and Mike Gesicki, from Penn State.
Interesting Note 2: With its regional covers, Janarion Grant makes this one...along with the Irish’s Equanimeous St. Brown (WR), BC’s Harold Landry (DE), and the Terp’s Jermaine Carter (LB). St. Brown should make it on the basis of his name alone.
Coming up: As of right now, we’re done. Over the next week or so, if we see a magazine that has something different than these three (not holding breath), we’ll be back.