Rutgers football hosts Wagner on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET at SHI Stadium airing live on the Big Ten Network. The game may be televised on a BTN overflow channel and you can find where based on your service provider here.
Here are three things to know about Wagner ahead of Saturday’s game against Rutgers.
Seahawks are an improved team
Wagner was 2-34 since 2019 (only two games played in the 2020/spring 2021 season) entering this season. They’ve already equaled their victory total after winning the past two games. After losing 46-16 to FCS powerhouse Fordham in the season opener, they played a down Navy team relatively well in a 24-0 road loss. The Seahawks then beat Sacred Hearst 17-10 on the road. Last week, Wagner defeated Merrimack 30-27 at home after a botched field goal attempt by the visitors attempting to tie the game late. It’s the program’s first winning streak since 2018. While Rutgers should absolutely handle Wagner and dominate them in the trenches, they are a better team than the one that visited Piscataway and lost 66-7.
Starting quarterback transferred from UConn
Steven Krajewski is in his first season at Wagner and is making a positive impact. He’s completed 52.0% of his passes (51 of 98) for 619 yards, 5 touchdowns and 2 interceptions in four games. Krajewski has also rushed for 75 yards on 28 carries along with 2 touchdowns. He was just named the Northeast Conference (NEC) Offensive Player of the Week for scoring two touchdowns apiece on the ground and through the air in the victory over Merrimack. Prior to this season, Krajewski was at UConn for multiple years. He was the starter for the Huskies in 2021 and completed 52.8% of his passes along with 1,217 yards, 7 touchdowns and 10 interceptions while rushing for 173 yards and three touchdowns.
Freshman kicker has been solid
Ryan Lizner has been strong in his first collegiate season in making all three field goal attempts of his career. The Clifton, New Jersey native has made kicks from 35 yards, 42 yards and 43 yards so far this season.
Running back having breakout season
Zachary Palmer-Smith is from Delran and in his second season at Wagner. He only had 2 carries for 2 yards last season against Rutgers. This season, he has already passed his rushing total from last season (249 yards) by amassing 271 yards on 4.5 yards per carry. The 6’0″, 205 pound back will be looking to continue his strong play against a Rutgers defense that only allows 3.3 yards per carry.
Junior Wily’s interception streak
The defensive back from Hawaii has three interceptions in 14 career games for Wagner over one-plus seasons. The Seahawks are 3-11 during that timeframe, winning every game that Wily snagged an interception including the last two weeks. Wily was named NEC Defensive Player of the Week for his takeaway. He is also tied for second with 33 tackles including 1.5 tackles for loss, a pass breakup and a quarterback hit. While Wily potentially grabbing an interception on Saturday would likely end his win streak, it would certainly be enough to spook Rutgers fans if it came early in the game. Hopefully, Rutgers quarterback Gavin Wimsatt continues to minimize turnovers on Saturday.
Here are my four predictions for the game, including my final score projections.
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