For a long time, despite defensive line being one of the Scarlet Knights’ biggest weaknesses, no one had committed in the 2020 class until graduate transfer Malik Barrow Sunday, who has just one year left to play. Troy Rainey joined him later that day after flipping from Bowling Green while on his official visit over the weekend.
Rainey played offensive tackle and defensive tackle at the scholastic level. He’s a Big Ten sized lineman already who looks great getting off the bus. Troy shows surprising explosion once he gets moving and absolutely does not need to add weight. Even on film you can see quarterbacks startled by such a big guy bursting through the line at them who continues to gain speed to closer he gets to the ball. He is in the mold of so many defensive linemen in the NFL who come from smaller colleges and you wonder how the devil they evaded the Power Five programs. His offer list is not impressive, but part of that comes from playing in Connecticut and another part comes from his really growing into his body late in his high school career after the bulk of the leg work for most programs is done for a class. Worst case he is a big body to push the starters on the scout team who by his fourth year is occupying space on game day. Best case is his first step and power are huge assets in the pass rush and he can push the pocket from the middle better than anyone since Sebastian Joseph-Day in his final season before going to the NFL.
High School Position: DL/OL (6’5”, 301 lbs.)
Projected college position: 3-technique defensive tackle in a 4-3
High School: Harding
Hometown: Bridgeport, CT
Most notable other offers: Bowling Green, Monmouth
Rainey arrives at Rutgers to a defensive line group that loses team MVP Willington Previlon and was a patchwork operation as it was to steal snaps on the interior line from players who were better suited to play defensive end. The team based on most of its current personnel would be best served playing a Dick LeBeau Steelers style 3-4 look, but to do so needs two of three capable true nose guards which RU did not in 2019. You can never have enough defensive linemen and in the modern game, they can get acclimated in a variety of ways including situational roles like on the goal line. w and . The defensive line always seems to sustain losses as players usually take a year or two to be ready for the college level and the rotation goes as many as ten deep on a good year. Rutgers needs to add as many three-star talents as possible and hope a few transform themselves into true disruptors.
Floor: Eric Wiafe
Most likely: Kenneth Kirksey
Potential: Justin Francis
Check out his highlights below:
Stick with On the Banks all day for more National Signing Day coverage.