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Monday, March 24, 2014

Rutgers veteran quarterback Gary Nova begins spring with unclear future

Gary Nova has 28 career starts, but erratic play and criticism have followed. He is listed as an 'OR' on Rutgers' pre-spring depth chart. (AP photo)

By Tyler Barto
Twitter: @Tyler_Barto

PISCATAWAY ― Despite cornering the market in every statistical category, Gary Nova is no lock to start, according to Rutgers' pre-spring depth chart.

Nova, Mike Bimonte, Blake Rankin, Chris Laviano and Devin Ray are listed as co-starters. Head coach Kyle Flood said in early January that starting Nova in Rutgers' inaugural Big Ten season wasn't a given.

"It's not an ideal situation, that's for sure," Flood said.

Flood said all quarterbacks will get reps during the first three practices. The rest is unknown.

Nova, with 28 career starts, has thrown for more than 6,400 career yards with 51 touchdowns and 39 interceptions. No other quarterback inside the team's Hale Center has appeared in a game.

Inside Rutgers' inconsistent quarterback culture

A career 54.7-percent passer, Nova completed less than 50 percent of his passes in three of his final four starts in 2013 before giving way to backup Chas Dodd

"I don't have any set time in my mind in naming a quarterback this spring," Flood said.

Offensive coordinator Ralph Friedgen, hired in late January, is Nova's fourth play caller and position coach in as many years. Supporters of Friedgen's hire call him a strong offensive mind.

He will have plenty of options to choose from under center.

Barring transfer, six scholarship quarterbacks will dot Rutgers' roster in the fall. One will sit out per NCAA transfer rules. Another will be a true freshman.

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