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10/06/2012 7:18 PM EDT
Jamison, No. 22 Rutgers beat UConn 19-3
RUTGERS 19, CONNECTICUT 3
By RALPH D. RUSSO
AP College Football Writer
PISCATAWAY, N.J. (AP) -- Grinding offense and suffocating
defense, with a big play or two sprinkled in here and there.
That's the Rutgers way and it worked to perfection in a 19-3
victory Saturday against Connecticut that was anything but
pretty, but totally effective.
"If you could bottle today's game, you'd have Rutgers football,"
coach Kyle Flood said.
Jawan Jamison ran for 110 yards for the 22nd-ranked Scarlet
Knights and Wayne Warren returned an interception 25 yards for a
touchdown in the fourth quarter to leave no doubt about the
The Scarlet Knights (5-0, 2-0 Big East) are off to their best
start since 2006, and they avenged a bitter loss to the Huskies
that ended last regular season and kept Rutgers from sharing the
Jamison ran it 28 times and recorded his sixth straight 100-yard
game and Gary Nova hooked up with Mark Harrison on a 14-yard
touchdown pass early in the third quarter.
Warren put it away with 3:44 left in the fourth when he grabbed
a pass down the middle from Chandler Whitmer, and then darted
through would-be-tacklers toward the end zone.
"I used to be a quarterback in high school," Warren said. "My
offensive instinct kicked in. I caught the ball and I was just,
`Fine a hole, find a hole, make a play. I was really good at it
in high school so I guess it paid off for me today."
Warren pushed across the goal line with some help from his
"When you can make teams one dimensional, that's what happens,"
Flood said. "It's like an avalanche."
UConn benched leading rusher Lyle McCombs for the first quarter
after he was arrested and charged with second-degree breaching
the peace on Friday. He finished with 32 yards on 12 carries and
the Huskies (3-3, 0-1) were held to their worst scoring output
since getting shut out by Louisville in the middle of the 2010
"We had a hard time stopping their slotting and angling up
front," UConn coach Paul Pasqualoni said. "Had a hard time
finishing our blocks. We have to be able to run the ball better,
McCombs is accused of yelling, pushing and spitting at his
girlfriend during an argument outside a dorm in Storrs.
Rutgers has won six of the last eight meetings, but lost last
year's game 40-22.
"Last year we got blindsided," defensive tackle Scott Vallone,
who anchored a defense that held UConn to 53 yards rushing, and
244 yards total.
Not this year. Rutgers hadn't played since winning at Arkansas
35-26 two weeks ago. Nova and the offense led the way in
Fayetteville, but this was more like it for the Scarlet Knights.
Rutgers, which came in ranked No. 1 in the country in rush
defense, forced five turnovers, committed only one and held the
ball for 32 minutes.
"Stop the run, turnovers. All the things that we've done around
here and what we've pride ourselves on," Vallone said.
The Scarlet Knights, unveiling new black uniforms with red trim
to go with silver helmets, seemed intent on letting their
defense keep them undefeated against a UConn team that was
second-to-last in the Big East in total offense.
Linebackers Khaseem Greene and Steve Beauharnais were all over
UConn's runners, and the Huskies couldn't keep Rutgers blitzes
from forcing Whitmer to hurry his throws. Greene also had an
interception late in the fourth quarter.
Rutgers chipped away offensively with Jamison running tough
against a defense that had only been allowing 74 yards per game
on the ground. Nova rarely went downfield but finished 18 for 27
for 157 yards.
The Scarlet Knights' first drive of the second half was the best
of the game for either team, an 84-yarder on nine plays,
highlighted by Jamison's 28-yard run and capped when Harrison
slipped a couple of tacklers and reached into the end zone with
9:09 left to make it 13-3.
Rutgers turned two first-quarter turnovers by UConn into two
field goals by Kyle Federico in a span of 3:15.
Logan Ryan intercepted Whitmer's pass at the Huskies 45 and that
led to Federico's 45-yarder and a 3-0 lead.
Whitmer finished 14 of 32 for 191 yards with four interceptions.
On the ensuing kickoff, Nick Williams was stripped by Tejay
Johnson and Jamal Merrell recovered for Rutgers at UConn's 29.
After Jamison's 18-yard touchdown run was called back for
holding, Federico booted through a 31-yarder.
UConn put together one solid drive in the first half, going 43
yards on 10 plays behind the running of McCombs and backup
quarterback Scott McCummings. The drive stalled inside the 5 and
Chad Christen kicked a 19-yard field goal to make it 6-3.
"We have to do a better job of capitalizing," McCombs said.
"It's nothing they did it's what we did. We didn't get it done."
Follow Ralph D. Russo at www.Twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP
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