The Sporting News has released its forecast for Big East football and, in an eight team league, Rutgers is tabbed to finish 7th. That’s ahead only of hapless Syracuse.
Before booing, remember that in 2007 Rutgers finished tied with Louisville and Pitt for 5th — ahead only of hapless Syracuse.
Remember, too, that Rutgers lost Ray Rice to the NFL, its offensive line is decimated by graduation, the defense was porous last year and there’s no reason to think it has gotten better. Call this edition of the Scarlet Knight just more mediocrity and that seems right on.
And yet Mulcahy III and Slick McCormick continue the money gusher into football — to what end? Latter day fans will flee a losing edition of the Scarlet Knights like cockroaches escaping Raid and, by season’s end, our bet (Preston Pennypacker‘s Panglossian prediction aside) is that Rutgers will be lucky to limp to a 7-5 result, even with the shameless stacking of creampuffs onto the schedule.
We expect the Rutgers losses to start against Fresno State and we anticipate that every tough opponent will throttle Schiano’s Schoolboys. By season’s end we expect Rutgers Stadium to be as empty as a cemetery at midnight in a blizzard — and watch that diminished enthusiasm crush ticket sales for the 2009 campaign. New Jersey fans have no affection for losers and they will show it by not showing up.
Will Slick McCormick then confess that the foray into high-priced football was a disaster — just as his father Richard McCormick the elder suggested to the New York Times a decade ago.