In a world where uncertainty has become the norm, the Rutgers football team’s offense is no different.
What is known about the offense so far is that there are noteworthy recruits coming in and some talent at wide receiver and running back.
While it will be offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Sean Gleeson’s first season on the Banks, he doesn’t lack experience. He led Oklahoma State to victory in the 2019 Texas Bowl and was the play caller for an offense ranked No. 36 nationally with an average of 32.5 points scored per game. Before his time with the Cowboys, Gleeson coached at Princeton.
In 2018, the Tigers set an Ivy League offensive record with 470 points, on their way to an undefeated season.
Besides the past success, Gleeson brings an entirely new offensive scheme to the Scarlet Knights.
“We want to be fast and physical. I know that sounds like a coach platitude but, to me, it is a little deeper than just throwing out those two words. In regard to fast, we want to be a fast no-huddle offense," Gleeson said. “So we will (operate) primarily out of the shotgun and you will see an aggressiveness in the way our guys line up and address the next snap.”
Gleeson later defined fast as snapping the ball every 15 seconds. To achieve that, Rutgers’ offense will need to go through a makeover and that starts with the quarterback.
Last season, the Knights played several student-athletes under center, but most of the work was done by sophomore quarterback Johnny Langan.
He led Rutgers with 30 first downs off the rush and posted 391 rushing yards to go along with three touchdown runs. In comparison, the starting running back, junior Isaih Pacheco, managed seven rushing touchdowns.
Junior quarterback Artur Sitkowski has an advantage over a number of the quarterbacks. He stands at 6 feet 5 inches and weighs 230 pounds.
The stage is set for any signal-caller this year. The wide receivers include deep-threat senior Bo Melton, as well as sophomore Isaiah Washington and a number of recruits.
Another quarterback vying to contribute is graduate transfer Noah Vedral. He addressed how his skills can fit into Gleeson’s fast-paced offense.
“I like to consider myself a fast decision-maker. That’s why I do well with tempo,” he said, according to ScarletNation.com. “Whatever it takes, I feel comfortable doing it."
Last year, his skill set led him to the hardwood as he saw a couple of minutes in the Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament. On the gridiron, he dealt with injuries but was able to record 418 passing yards. While Vedral didn’t throw for any scores, he had three rushing touchdowns.
With the limited team activities, it is difficult to tell who will start at quarterback for the Knights. But several months ago, Gleeson said, “I like guys that played multiple sports, guys that compete all year long and have a gene about them.”
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