Rutgers football coach says Scarlet Knights, Big Ten 'a tremendous marriage'
CHICAGO — Though their moves were announced more than 20 months ago, Rutgers and Maryland took part in their first official conference event at Big Ten media days.
Maryland spent the prior six decades in the ACC; Rutgers was in the Big East for football for more than 20 years. While their additions to the Big Ten — ones commissioner Jim Delany acknowledged were more for financial reasons than on-field merit — have drawn figurative groans from fans, Rutgers coach Kyle Flood defended his school's profile.
“Over the last year, I've gotten this question probably more than any: How do you feel about being in the Big Ten?” Flood said. “And my answer to you would be this: It feels right.
“To me, as I look at our football program and I look at the Big Ten conference, I see a tremendous marriage.”
Players and coaches for the Terrapins and Scarlet Knights acknowledged the challenge they expect to encounter in what appears to be a brutal East Division.
Before even stepping onto the field, Flood's school has lost battles against their new conference rivals on the recruiting trail. Penn State, in particular, has recruited successfully in New Jersey and Maryland in its short time under James Franklin.
“We know that we're in an area where there's going to be a lot of schools come in and recruit where we're at,” Maryland coach Randy Edsall said.