Wimsat runs for 3 TDs, Rutgers bowl eligible after 31-14 win over Indiana
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — Gavin Wimsatt ran for three touchdowns and 143 yards as Rutgers became bowl eligible with a 31-14 road victory over Indiana on Saturday.
The Scarlet Knights (6-2, 3-2 Big Ten) equaled their best start since 2012 and tied a program record for conference wins.
The Hoosiers (2-5, 0-4) have lost 11 of 12 games in the conference.
Wimsatt scored twice on 1-yard sneaks in the first half, then the junior quarterback broke free on an 80-yard TD run for the game’s final points early in the fourth quarter. Rutgers wore down Indiana’s defense with relentless rushing in amassing 276 yards.
Rutgers’ Kyle Monangai, the Big Ten’s leading rusher with 744 yards, finished with 109 on 24 carries for his fourth 100-yard game of the season.
Indiana drove to an opening touchdown as Brendan Sorsby threw a 35-yard touchdown pass to Omar Cooper Jr., but Rutgers responded with two touchdowns. Shaquan Loyal came off the edge for to block a punt and Eric Rogers scooped and scored from 17 yards out in the second quarter to make it 14-7.
The Hoosiers tied the game on a Sorsby 4-yard run and appeared to be headed to halftime tied but returner Jaylin Lucas, the reigning Big Ten’s Specialist of the Year, muffed a punt and Rutgers recovered at Indiana’s 25 with 28 seconds remaining. The turnover led to a Rutgers field goal for a 17-14 halftime lead.
Rutgers: A third consecutive win over the Hoosiers was important for bowl eligibility when considering the Scarlet Knights’ last four opponents entered the day with a combined record of 23-3.
Indiana: Humbled by three losses to ranked teams as well as to then-unbeaten Maryland, the Hoosiers were unable to turn a losing season around despite taking an early lead. Pressure is mounting on coach Tom Allen, who received a seven-year extension in 2021. The home crowd booed after the Hoosiers ran unsuccessfully on a third-and-7 play in the second quarter, settling for a punt. It would take $20 million to buy out the remainder of Allen’s contract.
The last time Rutgers had a winning season was 2014, when they were 8-5 with Kyle Flood as the coach. The only bowl game they went was Taxslayer Gator Bowl (Dec. 31, 2021) as a COVID-19 replacement for Texas A&M with a 4-8 record. The Scarlet Knights lost to Wake Forest.
Rutgers: The Scarlet Knights have a weekend off before hosting Ohio State on Nov. 4.
Indiana: The Hoosiers visit Penn State next Saturday.
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