With the victory, 22nd-ranked Rutgers improves to 5-0 overall and 2-0 in conference. UConn falls to 3-3 and 0-1 in the Big East.
Rutgers led from start to finish, clamping down defensively with three late interceptions on the Huskies’ futile attempts to challenge for pay dirt. Jawan Jamison topped 100 yards for the fifth straight game, rushing 28 times for 110 yards. Gary Nova completed 18 of 27 passes for 157 yards and a touchdown to Mark Harrison. Brandon Coleman was Rutgers’ top receiver with 71 yards on six catches. Wayne Warren’s 25-yard interception return for a touchdown put the game out of reach with 3:44 left to play.
UConn’s Chandler Whitmer completed on 14 of 32 passes for 191 yards and threw four interceptions. Lyle McCombs, who sat out the first quarter for disciplinary reasons, netted just 32 yards on 12 carries. Geremy Davis led Huskies receivers with four catches for 78 yards.
The UConn defense had a respectable performance, hold Rutgers to 280 yards of total offense, but the offense could not produce and Nick Williams coughed up the football deep in Connecticut territory on a kick return.
The Huskies are a team with no personality. The tenacious defense that buoyed the team earlier in the season seems to have regressed, perhaps from overwork, and the offense has struggled to find the end zone. The running attack that has been such a staple of the UConn attack in past seasons is ineffective and the passing game is not developed to the extent that in can be a crutch for the struggling offensive unit. Special teams have bailed out the Huskies a few times on the season, but that unit will never be a consistent factor in game outcomes.
With Temple's 27-26 defeat of South Florida, UConn cannot expect an easy victory Oct. 13 when the Owls (2-2, 1-0) travel to Rentschler field. An improvement on last year’s 5-7 record is looking less likely and Huskies fans are making known their displeasure with the coaching staff.
Rutgers hosts the Syracuse Orange (2-3, 1-0) Oct. 13.