Scarlet Knights hoping to add to historic start when they visit the struggling Hoosiers
BLOOMINGTON, Indiana (AP) — Rutgers (5-2, 2-2 Big Ten) at Indiana (2-4, 0-3), Noon ET (Big Ten Network)
Line: Rutgers by 5 1/2, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
Series record: Indiana leads 5-4.
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
Rutgers can add to its already remarkable start. The Scarlet Knights are trying to go 6-2 for the first time since 2012, and a win at Indiana wouldn’t just even the series. It would also give Rutgers three Big Ten wins, tying the program record. Indiana’s desperate mission: Win to get the program on track. Three of the Hoosiers four losses came against teams ranked in last week’s top 15 while the fourth was against then-undefeated Maryland. This may be Indiana’s best chance over the last four weeks.
Rutgers RB Kyle Monangai vs. Hoosiers run defense. Monangai has had quite a fifth season — three 100-yard games, the winning score last week against Michigan State and a conference-best 635 yards through seven games. Keeping him under control will be essential for a Hoosiers defense that has been relatively solid against the run all season. The task becomes more critical, though, because Indiana’s offense has just one meaningful touchdown in three conference games.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Rutgers: QB Gavin Wimsatt. Normally, Rutgers’ best seasons are typically powered by strong ground games. Wimsatt brings a new dimension, a solid dual-threat signal-caller. He’s rushed for four scores, thrown seven TD passes and is sixth in the Big Ten in points responsible for (66). He’s also thrown a TD pass in all seven games this season — the program’s longest streak since Gary Nova (12) in 2012.
Indiana: QBs Tayven Jackson, Brendan Sorsby or both. The quarterback quandary continues into the Hoosiers’ second half. Last week, new offensive coordinator Rod Carey used Jackson and Sorsby, but the only TD pass belonged to WR Donaven McCulley, a former QB. Coach Tom Allen won’t say who’s starting, whether both will play or if another quarterback could enter the fray.
FACTS & FIGURES
Rutgers won the first two and the last two in this series. In between, Indiana won five straight. … The Scarlet Knights are playing for the eighth consecutive week and are seeking their first 3-2 conference start since joining the Big Ten … The Hoosiers have lost three of their last four overall and 10 of their last 11 against conference foes. … Rutgers has outscored opponents 79-34 in the fourth quarter this season and is 11-1 since 2020 when having no turnovers. … Indiana’s scoring average (18.5 points) is last among all Power Five teams. Only six FBS schools have lower averages. … The Hoosiers are playing their first home game since beating Akron 29-27 in a school record four overtimes. …Indiana LB Aaron Casey leads the Big Ten with 1.33 tackles for loss per game.
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