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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Rutgers linebacker Steve Longa on injures: 'I'm coming for everybody'

By Tyler Barto
Twitter: @Tyler_Barto

PISCATAWAY — Steve Longa is issuing an obvious mea culpa: he is not trying to injure his own teammates. The redshirt freshman middle linebacker has a recent habit of doing so, capped by Lorenzo Waters' high-ankle sprain Oct. 25 against Houston.

"Everybody has to stay away from me: my teammates, the opposite team, everybody," Longa said Wednesday after practice. "I'm coming for everybody."

Longa rolled up on Waters' ankle on the first play from scrimmage. He also collided with cornerback Lew Toler on Oct. 10 at Louisville when Toler broke his arm. He didn't know he was responsible until he watched film.

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"I saw Toler and I saw Lorenzo," Longa said. "He came back and I gave him a hug and started smiling. He started laughing too. Lorenzo came up to me and was like, 'You're the one.' I was like, 'What do you mean I'm the one?'"

["Everybody has to stay away from me: my teammates, the opposite team, everybody. I'm coming for everybody." — Steve Longa]

Longa, meanwhile, has remained relatively healthy. Rutgers' defense has benefited. 

He leads Rutgers in tackles and tackles for loss, is tied for first in forced fumbles and is No. 2 in sacks.

"Being undersized doesn't mean anything," Longa said. "You could be a big 260-pound linebacker and slow and anything and get hurt. You could be  220 pounds with a lot of speed and cause the same power and velocity."

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