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Saturday, November 2, 2013

Inside Rutgers' fourth-and-short stop against Temple

By Tyler Barto
Twitter: @Tyler_Barto

Rutgers stopped Temple and quarterback P.J. Walker, pictured, on a late fourth down Saturday. (AP photo)

PISCATAWAY — On fourth-and-inches with less than two minutes left Saturday against Temple, Rutgers' defense ran a play it hadn't shown all day.

Temple quarterback P.J. Walker lined up in shotgun with running back Kenneth Harper lined up to his right. Sensing a run, Rutgers executed a cross blitz, in which linebackers Kevin Snyder and Steve Longa blitzed the A gap (between the center and guard) on opposite sides. 

Walker fed Harper on a belly run, and the Scarlet Knights stopped him in the backfield, giving Rutgers the ball inside its 30-yard line with 1:50 remaining.

"We had the safety up tighter," head coach Kyle Flood said, "but those guys did a nice job of penetrating and making the tackle."

Snyder said it was the first time Rutgers ran the blitz all game. 

"It wasn't even in our game plan," he said. "That's a different look they weren't really ready for it. We were running one blitz the whole game."

A week after allowing more than 200 rushing yards, the Knights held Temple to only 46 net yards on the ground. It helped turn the tides of what was nearly a three-game losing streak.

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