At least some Rutgers 1000 stalwarts are ardent gridiron fans and one longtime Rutgers 1000 adherent, Preston Pennypacker, recently approached us with his conviction that the Rutgers football team will go 9-3 this year.
We reacted with skepticism – our sense is that the team (minus Ray Rice and half the offensive line) just isn’t that good.
But Pennypacker persisted. Here are his predictions for the 2008 campaign:
West Virginia (L)
South Florida (L)
What does he base this Panglossian outlook on? Pennypacker explained to us that he is using the 2007 season ending Sagarin ratings. Rutgers ended the season at #38 and, per Pennypacker, the 2008 schedule has more cream puffs than a French bakery. The number in parenthesis is the season ending Sagarin rating.:
Fresno State (60)
North Carolina (69)
Morgan State (205)
West Virginia (3)
South Florida (20)
Is a victory over a Syracuse, an Army, a Morgan State not worth exactly the same as a win over the a top 10 team? You bet those wins count in the calculus of Rutgers athletic director Mulcahy the III. Add in wins over real mediocrities such as North Carolina and Navy and, suddenly, the cunning of Mulcahy III is evident. Rutgers can hardly not have a winning season!
Pennypacker is spot on. The computer says 9-3 is within reach and all that without registering a single quality win. Clap your hands loud for duplicitous scheduling – and know, per Pennypacker, that yet another appearance in a tertiary, low-prestige bowl is assured for the RU football squad.
Go, go Mulcahy III. With scheduling like this, Rutgers cannot lose – and as long as the fans are so intoxicated with the odors of musky jocks that thought is paralyzed they’ll never figure out that the fix was in at the get go.