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November 29, 2012

Rutgers vs. Louisville: Did you Notice?

PISCATAWAY, N.J. - Rutgers dropped a heartbreaker to close out the season in front of a capacity crowd as the Scarlet Knights fell to Louisville by a score of 20-17. In the midst of the defeat, did you notice...

Snyder gets the start?
Sophomore Kevin Snyder made his first start of his career, lining up as a hybrid in a 3-4 base defense taking the place of defensive end Ka'Lial Glaud. Snyder later lined up on the edge in the second quarter and wound up dropping back into one-one-one coverage against UL tight Ryan Hubbell on a pass that sailed incomplete over their heads in the endzone. Snyder also had a big second quarter play when he closed very well from the other side of the field on a UL screen that went for no gain. Snyder also came up with a huge sack late in the fourth quarter to force a fourth down.

Waters playing the pass?
On a 2nd and 11 at midfield in the first quarter, strong safety Lorenzo Waters shot up on a short pass and broke up a Will Stein pass that would have given Louisville a 3rd and 4. Instead, Louisville was forced into a 3rd and 11 in which it came up short and was forced to punt.

First quarter first?
Brandon Coleman's 85-yard touchdown reception on RU's first play from scrimmage marked the first time Rutgers scored on its opening drive this season. Up until today, Rutgers only had 23 first quarter points this season.

Louisville's personal protector on punts?
Louisville took precautionary measures on its punts, lining up 6-foot-4, 330-pound sophomore Jamaine Brooks as its personal punt protector against the RU rush.

RU going five wide?
Rutgers showed early on that it was willing to open things up going with five wide receivers and an empty backfield on its second and third plays from scrimmage. The first play resulted in a 6-yard reception to Tim Wright and was followed up by a 10-yard catch by Quron Pratt. Rutgers later went five wide in the second quarter and it resulted in a 58-yard touchdown pass to Mark Harrison.

The weakside rush?
Jamil Merrell lined up as a weakside defensive end on a 2nd and long in the latter part of the second quarter. He took on a cut block from UL running back Corvin Lamb,went to his knees but bounced right up and combined to sack quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. Two plays earlier, Steve Beauharnais lined up at defensive end and tried to use a speed rush, but was pushed out the play.

Vallone taking points off the board?
On a 1st and 10 on the RU 26-yard line following a Khaseem Greene personal foul penalty early in the third quarter, fifth-year defensive tackle Scott Vallone making his 50th start broke into the backfield and threw Bridgewater for a 12-yard loss. That led to a 4th down in which Louisville attempted a 47-yard field goal that fell just short. Had Vallone not made the sack, distance may not have been a problem for U of L kicker John Wallace.

Jamison picking up the blitz?
On a 3rd and 3 early in the third quarter, Jawan Jamison lined up alone in the backfield with Gary Nova and did an excellent job of picking up blitzing safety Adrien Bushell. Jamison's block enabled Nova the time to find Harrison down the sideline for a 36-yard gain.

Leaving the 'R' unblocked?
On multiple occasions, Louisville left Rutgers "R" defensive end unblocked and ran to the opposite side. Twice in the first half Ka'Lial Glaud was left untouched and made tackles after taking an excelling stopping the Cardinals at or behind the line of scrimmage. Then, later in the third quarter, Marvin Booker was left unblocked on a similar play and threw U of L running Corvin Lamb for a two-yard loss.

Senior mistakes?
Two fifth-year seniors made costly mistakes that hurt Rutgers in the second half. The first came when Devon Watkis was flagged for an intelligible receiver downfield penalty that cost RU a would-be touchdown on a fake field goal that resulted in a J.T. Tartacoff to D.C. Jefferson pass. The second came on an incomplete pass that fell right through the hands of Tim Wright on a pass that would have placed Rutgers in the redzone during the early part of the fourth quarter. Wright dropped another pass that then bounced into the hands of Cardinal defender late in the fourth quarter.

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