PISCATAWAY, NJ – Rutgers (6-3, 3-2 BIG EAST) mounted a furious second-half comeback, but a late South Florida (4-3, 2-1 BIG EAST) score sealed a 45-31 victory for the Bulls Saturday at Rutgers Stadium.
The Bulls jumped out to the early lead when Andre Hall scored on a two-yard run, giving USF the 7-0 advantage less than five minutes into the contest.
Six minutes later, Johnnie Jones returned an interception 32 yards for a touchdown, followed three plays later by a Terrence Royal 11-yard fumble recovery and score, giving South Florida a 21-0 lead with 2:52 remaining in the opening period.
The Scarlet Knights got on the scoreboard 2:32 into the second quarter, capping a 12-play, 80-yard drive with a three-yard pass from senior QB Ryan Hart (Coral Springs, FL) to junior FB Brian Leonard (Gouverneur, NY).
Freshman Ray Rice (New Rochelle, NY) did most of the damage on the drive, picking up 53 yards on seven carries.
USF answered on its next possession when Hall scored his second touchdown of the day, a two-yard carry, to make the score 28-7 with 8:15 remaining in the first half.
Senior WR Tres Moses (Delray Beach, FL) hauled in a three-yard pass from Hart, pulling RU back within two touchdowns (28-14) at the 5:26 mark of the second quarter, but the Bulls tacked on a 20-yard field goal four seconds before halftime, and took a 31-14 lead into the locker room.
Sophomore Jeremy Ito (Redlands, CA) opened up the scoring in the third quarter, connecting on a 29-yard field goal 4:39 into the second half (31-17). But, Hall struck again for South Florida, this time scoring on a two-yard spurt. Kyle Bronson’s extra-point attempt was blocked, making the score 37-17 with 4:17 on the clock in the third quarter.
On the Scarlet Knights’ next drive, a 13-yard burst by Rice gave RU a first down at midfield, and a 15-yard USF personal foul on the play marched the Scarlet Knights down to the Bulls’ 32-yard line. Hart’s 31-yard completion to junior TE Clark Harris (Manahawkin, NJ) on the very next play set up the one-yard punch-in by Leonard (37-24, 1:09).
Rutgers got back to within a touchdown early in the fourth quarter. Hart’s 44-yard completion to Moses down the middle of the field, coupled with a facemask penalty against the Bulls, eventually led to a four-yard touchdown pass to Harris, swinging the momentum in Rutgers’ favor at 37-31 USF with
13:02 to play.
After a three-and-out created by the Scarlet Knight defense, RU was threatening to take the lead, but Hart was hit hard and the ball was jarred loose. USF recovered, giving South Florida the ball back at the Rutgers 28-yard line. The Bulls ended up attempting a 22-yard field goal, but sophomore Ron Girault (Spring Valley, NY) came up with the block, keeping it a one-possession game with less than seven minutes on the clock.
Redshirt freshman Mike Teel (Oakland, NJ) came on for an injured Hart during the next drive, but an interception by Mike Jenkins eventually set up a one-yard dive from USF quarterback Pat Julmiste. Ricky Ponton’s successful two-point conversion pushed the Bulls ahead 45-31 with 1:44 remaining.
Rutgers’ final comeback effort was halted less than 40 seconds later, when Trae Williams came up with an interception inside his team’s own 10-yard line.
Hart completed 15 of 25 passes for 217 yards, tossing three touchdowns.
Rice posted his third career 100-yard game, racking up 158 yards on 26 carries (6.1 yards per carry). Leonard, who scored two touchdowns for the Scarlet Knights, moved into second place on the RU career scoring list (218 points). Moses posted his seventh career 100-yard receiving total, and second of the season, with his five catches for 117 yards.
Junior LB Devraun Thompson (Piscataway, NJ) led Rutgers with 13 tackles, while freshman DB Courtney Greene (New Rochelle, NY) added 12 stops and a pass break-up.
Rutgers will return to action Friday, Nov. 11, when the Scarlet Knights travel to Louisville to face the Cardinals at 8:00 p.m. on ESPN2.
LEONARD MOVES INTO SECOND ON RUTGERS ALL-TIME SCORING LIST Junior FB Brian Leonard moved into second place on the Rutgers all-time scoring list with a pair of touchdowns against USF. A first-quarter TD reception and a third-quarter rushing score gave Leonard 218 career points, which moved him past Homer Hazel (1916, 23-24) into second place on the Rutgers all-time scoring list. Leonard is 43 points behind the program’s all-time scoring leader, Kennan Starzell (1976-79, 261 points).
CAREER SCORING LEADERS
Rank Name Points
1. Kennan Startzell (1976-79) 261
2. BRIAN LEONARD (2003-present) 218
3. Homer Hazel (1916, 23-24) 216
4. JJ Jennings (1971-73) 206
5. Bill Austin (1956-58) 204
RICE TOPS 100-YARD MARK FOR THIRD TIME THIS SEASON Freshman RB Ray Rice accumulated 158 yards on the ground against USF, marking the third time this season he has rushed for more than 100 yards in a game. He previously achieved the feat against Pittsburgh (9/30) with 114 yards on 15 carries, and at Connecticut (10/22) with 217 yards on 27 carries. With his 780 total rushing yards this season, Rice gives Rutgers a 700-yard back for each of the past three seasons.
LEONARD, MOSES EXTEND CATCH STREAK TO 31 GAMES, MOVE TO FIFTH ON BIG EAST LIST; HARRIS STREAK REACHES 27 With his 15-yard catch on the first play from scrimmage, junior FB Brian Leonard extended his reception streak to 31 games. Senior WR Tres Moses caught a 40-yard strike in the second quarter to extend his catch streak to 31. Five plays later, Moses recorded his 15th career touchdown reception.
Both players moved past Boston College’s Grant Adams into fifth place on the BIG EAST all-time consecutive games with a reception list. Junior TE Clark Harris registered two catches, including a third-quarter TD, to extend his streak to 27 straight games.
MOSES POSTS SEVENTH CAREER 100-YARD RECEIVING GAME With 117 receiving yards on five catches against USF, senior WR Tres Moses registered his seventh career 100-yard receiving effort. The total marked the second time this season he has totaled 100 or more receiving yards in a game. He also achieved the feat earlier this season with seven catches for
114 yards against Villanova (9/10).
LEONARD ENTERS TOP FIVE IN ALL-TIME TD RECEPTIONS Junior FB Brian Leonard hauled in a three-yard pass from Ryan Hart in the second quarter for his 12th career touchdown. The TD catch tied him with Mark Twitty (1974-75) for fifth place on the Rutgers career touchdown reception list.
HART ECLIPSES ALL-TIME PASS ATTEMPTS MARK Senior QB Hart, who already holds career marks in pass completions (695), yardage (7,871) and touchdowns (48), set a new school mark for most career attempts with his first attempt of the game – a 15-yard completion to FB Brian Leonard. He now has 1,153 career attempts.
TOP RUTGERS RUSHING TANDEMS
Junior FB Brian Leonard and true freshman RB Ray Rice combined to rush for
169 yards vs. South Florida, making them the sixth-highest rushing tandem in Rutgers history.
Rank Year Rushing Tandem Yards
1 1993 Terrell Willis 1,261
Bruce Presley 741
2 1994 Terrell Willis 1,080
Bruce Presley 546
3 1992 Bruce Presley 817
Craig Mitter 775
4 1995 Terrell Willis 773
Bruce Presley 678
5 2003 Brian Leonard 880
Justise Hairston 550
6 2005 Ray Rice 780
Brian Leonard 573
7 1998 Jacki Crooks 821
Dennis Thomas 418
MOSES MOVES INTO TOP FIVE ALL TIME IN ALL-PURPOSE YARDS WR Tres Moses (3,368 yards) entered the top five in career all-purpose yardage at Rutgers. He finished with 108 all-purpose yards (117 receiving,
-9 rushing) against USF. Moses passed Dave Dorn (3,308 yards from 1977-80) on the career all-purpose yard chart.
All-Purpose Yardage (Since 1948)
Name - Years Total Yards (Rush/Rec/PR/KOR)
1. Terrell Willis - 1993-95 5,340 (3,114/163/0/2,063)
2. Bruce Presley - 1992-95 3,831 (2,792/536/0/503)
3. Brian Leonard - 2003-pres. 3,587 (2185/1402/0/0)
4. Mike Fisher - 1974-77 3,426 (2,035/615/145/631)
5. Tres Moses - 2001-pres. 3,368 (5/2391/445/527)
6. Dave Dorn - 1977-80 3,308 (851/1,340/353/764)
Box Score (Final) USF vs RUTGERS (Nov 05, 2005 at Piscatway, NJ) Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Score ----------------- -- -- -- -- ----- USF................. 21 10 6 8 - 45 Record: (4-3,2-1) RUTGERS............. 0 14 10 7 - 31 Record: (6-3,3-2) Scoring Summary: 1st 10:11 USF - HALL, Andre 2 yd run (BRONSON, Kyle kick), 10-83 3:47 USF 7 - RUTGERS 0 04:18 USF - JONES, Johnnie 32 yd interception return (BRONSON, Kyle kick) USF 14 - RUTGERS 0 02:52 USF - ROYAL, Terrence 11 yd fumble recovery (BRONSON, Kyle kick) USF 21 - RUTGERS 0 2nd 12:28 RUTGERS - LEONARD, Brian 3 yd pass from HART, Ryan (ITO, Jeremy kick), 12-80 5:24 USF 21 - RUTGERS 7 08:15 USF - HALL, Andre 2 yd run (BRONSON, Kyle kick), 9-65 4:13 USF 28 - RUTGERS 7 05:26 RUTGERS - MOSES, Tres 3 yd pass from HART, Ryan (ITO, Jeremy kick), 6-65 2:49 USF 28 - RUTGERS 14 00:04 USF - BRONSON, Kyle 20 yd field goal, 16-66 5:17 USF 31 - RUTGERS 14 3rd 10:21 RUTGERS - ITO, Jeremy 29 yd field goal, 7-36 3:33 USF 31 - RUTGERS 17 04:17 USF - HALL, Andre 2 yd run (BRONSON, Kyle kick blockd), 8-25 4:06 USF 37 - RUTGERS 17 01:09 RUTGERS - LEONARD, Brian 1 yd run (ITO, Jeremy kick), 7-81 3:02 USF 37 - RUTGERS 24 4th 13:02 RUTGERS - HARRIS, Clark 4 yd pass from HART, Ryan (ITO, Jeremy kick), 5-57 1:46 USF 37 - RUTGERS 31 01:44 USF - JULMISTE, Pat 1 yd run (PONTON, Ricky rush), 9-46 2:18 USF 45 - RUTGERS 31 USF RUTGERS FIRST DOWNS................... 22 25 RUSHES-YARDS (NET)............ 57-242 40-165 PASSING YDS (NET)............. 135 233 Passes Att-Comp-Int........... 22-13-0 27-16-4 TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS..... 79-377 67-398 Fumble Returns-Yards.......... 1-11 0-0 Punt Returns-Yards............ 0-0 1-0 Kickoff Returns-Yards......... 4-89 4-99 Interception Returns-Yards.... 4-56 0-0 Punts (Number-Avg)............ 4-30.5 2-43.5 Fumbles-Lost.................. 0-0 2-2 Penalties-Yards............... 10-90 2-27 Possession Time............... 32:07 27:53 Third-Down Conversions........ 8 of 18 2 of 10 Fourth-Down Conversions....... 2 of 3 1 of 1 Red-Zone Scores-Chances....... 5-6 5-6 Sacks By: Number-Yards........ 2-8 0-0 RUSHING: USF-HALL, Andre 35-168; JULMISTE, Pat 12-48; PONTON, Ricky 7-36; TEAM 3-minus 10. RUTGERS-RICE, Ray 26-158; LEONARD, Brian 7-11; HART, Ryan 5-5; MOSES, Tres 2-minus 9. PASSING: USF-JULMISTE, Pat 13-21-0-135; TEAM 0-1-0-0. RUTGERS-HART, Ryan 15-25-3-217; TEEL, Mike 1-2-1-16. RECEIVING: USF-JACKSON, Amarri 7-68; PEYTON, Johnny 2-18; CHAMBERS, J. 1-28; PONTON, Ricky 1-9; HILL, Cedric 1-8; CARTER, Derek 1-4. RUTGERS-MOSES, Tres 5-117; LEONARD, Brian 5-41; HARRIS, Clark 2-35; TUCKER, Shawn 2-25; DANIELS, Marcus 1-11; RICE, Ray 1-4. INTERCEPTIONS: USF-ROYAL, Terrence 1-22; JENKINS, Mike 1-0; WILLIAMS, Trae 1-2; JONES, Johnnie 1-32. RUTGERS-None. FUMBLES: USF-None. RUTGERS-HART, Ryan 2-2. Stadium: Rutgers Stadium Attendance: 31131 Kickoff time: 12:05pm End of Game: 3:37pm Total elapsed time: 3:32 Officials: Referee: J. Cramer; Umpire: R. Kumiega; Linesman: T. Gray; Line judge: J. Cooney; Back judge: K. Washington; Field judge: R. Sokolowski; Side judge: P. Garvey; Scorer: RUTGERS; Temperature: 64 deg Wind: SW 8mph Weather: Sunny, Some Haze ID-353314