Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
How bad are things at Rutgers?
Not only did Rutgers lose to Navy 23-21 on Saturday to drop to 0-3, but QB Mike Teel took a swipe at one of his teammates.
In a lowlight that is being played over and over on ESPN, Teel slapped teammate Glen Lee in the head late in the game when Lee was trying to get Teel off the field after the QB threw an interception.
“I know there was an episode there at the end with Glen Lee and Mike, and I tell our guys all the time it’s family business. You keep it inside the family,” Rutgers coach Greg Schiano said, according to Keith Sargeant of the Home News Tribune. “But all I will say is everybody in that locker room understands Glen was trying to encourage him to come off the field and I think Mike was just so incredibly down about what just happened that he snapped a little. Guys have forgiven each other and we moved on.”
Here is what Lee had to say.
“That was nothing. We’re all family,” the senior cornerback said, according to the Home News. “Nothing happened. We’re family. It was just in-house family stuff. Basically just a family-oriented thing, we’re a family, we work together as a family, we speak as a family, we act as a family. We’re a family. Everything we do, we deal with it as a family, we respond as a family. You know, family-oriented team.”
“He was telling me to keep my head up and get off the field – what I should’ve been doing — and I let the circumstances dictate my actions,” said Teel, who was 13-of-20 or 131 yards and his sixth interception of the season. “I didn’t handle myself the way a Rutgers football player should handle himself.”
In addition to the Teel incident, Rutgers also lost two players to injury, George Johnson (lower leg) and Pete Tverdov (ankle).
The bright spot was that redshirt freshman RB Jourdan Brooks, playing in front of a dozen or so family and friends in his home state of Maryland, rushed for 134 yards and two TDs on 22 carries, while redshirt frosh Joe Martinek had 61 yards on eight carries.
At 0-3, it’s not hard to imagine this season turning into a 3-9 or 2-10-type debacle, if not worse.
After next week’s home against Division I-AA Morgan State, Rutgers must travel to No. 21 West Virginia and Cincinnati in back-to-back weeks. It’s certainly not hard to imagine the Knights being 1-5 when they return from Cincinnati.
The Knights return home to face unbeaten Connecticut (4-0) on Oct. 18.
After that it’s at Pittsburgh, home for Syracuse and at No. 12 South Florida.
The last two games are home for Army and Louisville.
The only games you can say with some certainty that Rutgers might win there are the Morgan State, Syracuse and Army games, but at this point is anything certain?
(Photo courtesy Home News Tribune)
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.