Jeremiah Williams has been with the Scarlet Knights just one week and his impact has been huge.
The Scarlet Knights have won all three games that Williams has played in since being named eligible by the NCAA. Williams has now been named Big Ten Player of the Week after averaging 16 points, five rebounds, and four assists over the last two games.
Williams scored 14 points, including the game-sealing layup, in a win over Maryland. In his first home game as a Scarlet Knight, Williams led Rutgers to a win over No. 11 Wisconsin with 18 points, five rebounds, and seven assists.
Williams becomes the third Scarlet Knight to win this award. Cam Spencer earned this honor in January of 2023 while Geo Baker is a former two-time winner. This marks the fourth consecutive year that Rutgers has had a player win this award.
The presence of Williams has improved the offense instantly. He has proven to be a playmaker that makes his teammates better.
Williams has sat out the first 20 games of the season after violating the NCAA’s gambling policy. He was waiting for a decision to be made about his future this season and on January 31, there was an answer. The NCAA landed on a 15-game suspension with some of it being retroactive.
The NCAA initially deemed Williams ineligible until Feb. 18, when Rutgers takes on Minnesota but he was ruled eligible after filing a suit against the NCAA. This allowed him to return for the Feb. 3 meeting against Michigan. Williams has scored in double-figures in each game since returning.
As a sophomore, Williams averaged 9.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 4.3 assists. He shot 41.7% from the field. He suffered a torn Achilles in early October in 2022, forcing him to miss the season. Once the season was done, he entered the transfer portal without playing a game for the Cyclones.
In August, Williams was charged with tampering records as the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation’s probe into sports gambling. The legal betting age in Iowa is 21. Williams allegedly placed 15 bets that totaled $1,560. He eventually pled guilty and reached an agreement with prosecutors, including a fine of $645.
Rutgers has improved to 13-10 overall and 5-7 in the Big Ten. It will take on Northwestern on Thursday before traveling to take on Minnesota. The Scarlet Knights have an outside shot of returning to the NCAA Tournament. If this were to happen, the team needs to continue racking up wins and the presence of Williams could be the deciding factor.