Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano was the first to take the podium on Friday morning during the second day of Big Ten Media Days at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
Schiano answered questions for 15 minutes on the upcoming season that involved recruiting, NIL, and more. Below is a quick recap of what was said during Schiano’s quick press conference in Indianapolis.
- Schiano began by thanking Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren and discussing his journey back to Rutgers for a second stint.
- He described Noah Vedral, Bo Melton, and Olakunle Fatukasi, who he brought with him to media day as “fine players but great people.”
- Schiano credited his staff when asked about the program’s recent success recruiting, stating that they are people who believe in Rutgers and the path they are heading. He noted his relationship with Urban Meyer and admitted he has taken some ideas from Meyer and learned from his passion in recruiting. Schiano indicated that Rutgers looks for unselfish players who love the game of football. Recruiting talent in New Jersey is “without a doubt” a priority. During Schiano’s first stint, there were many players from south Florida. When they began winning, New Jersey players began to stay home and Schiano believes Rutgers can get back to that level.
- Schiano explained how CHOP is one of the three pieces of Rutgers culture. It is described as the ability to focus no matter what is going on around you — the mental and physical focus. “It is the ability to hit the same spot on the tree no matter what until it falls down.”
- Schiano continued with the importance of Vedral being back under center and how he was a priority when he entered the portal. Schiano watched highlights once he was sent the news that Vedral intended to transfer out of Nebraska. He became a player the Scarlet Knights wanted because of the fit Vedral would be in the fast-paced offense that Rutgers features. He stated that Vedral is a player who puts his teammates first and has great respect for them and his coaches.
- Schiano explained the relationship between Vedral and Sean Gleeson. Coming from Oklahoma State, Gleeson was a priority to get on the staff. It is the first time in nearly a decade that the Scarlet Knights have the same quarterback and offensive coordinator back for consecutive seasons. The continuity is important. Schiano joked “I’m just glad we have the same head coach back.”
- Schiano expressed the importance of having Fatukasi back. “He might be the biggest recruit we signed.” Fatukasi led the Big Ten in tackles last season and was recently placed on the Bednarik Award Watch List. Schiano described Fatukasi as a future professional who is going to be a strong player once again this season. He takes care of himself the way a professional has to and truly lives the game. Fatukasi is described as a great example for younger players and newcomers.
- He was asked about players now being able to receive an income for their name, image and likeness. Schiano believes that there is a lot to be learned over the next 12-18 months on how it will impact college football. He described this as a great thing for students athletes and they deserve to make income off NIL. Schiano highlighted how this is also a great opportunity for coaches to educate athletes. Schiano had a discussion with his players on income tax, which will help after football. This backs up Schiano’s notion that they recruit the right guys for Rutgers and want to develop them in every area.
Schiano got the day started off on the right foot with his usual calm and collected demeanor. He will be back on camera at 3:45 pm E.T. for an interview with the BTN crew. Vedral, Melton, and Fatukasi will also be interviewed by the BTN crew, airing at 4:15 pm E.T. We will have full coverage of those interviews after they take place.