Rutgers takes huge leap in USA TODAY’s college football rankings

Onward and upward.

No, Rutgers did not crack the AP Top 25 poll following the 38-27 win on Saturday over Michigan State.

But the Scarlet Knights are trending up in USA TODAY’s ranking of college football programs.

In fact, Rutgers was the third-biggest climber this week, behind only Indiana and Purdue.

Greg Schiano’s Scarlet Knights went into the season ranked 109th out of the 127 Bowl Subdivision programs analyzed by USA TODAY.

After Saturday’s win, Rutgers moved up 26 spots to No. 83.

Indiana climbed 38 spots to No. 24 after upsetting Penn State in overtime on Saturday.

Purdue is up to No. 44, a rise of 34 spots, after beating Iowa, 24-20, on Saturday.

Rutgers hosts Indiana on Saturday in their 2020 home opener at SHI Stadium. According to Rutgers PR, the Scarlet Knights are 99-39-10 all-time in home openers, winning nine of the last 10, and 7-4 under Schiano.

– RU is 1-0 in the Big Ten for the first time and seeks a 2-0 conference start for the first time since 2012 in the Big East.

– Oct. 31 marks the latest date on the calendar for the home opener since November 11, 1944, when Rutgers lost to Lafayette 39-0.

– Saturday will mark the seventh meeting on the gridiron between Rutgers and Indiana since first playing in 2014. The Scarlet Knights won the first two matchups, while the Hoosiers have taken the last four.

– This will be the first time Rutgers faces a ranked Indiana team. Since 1977, the Scarlet Knights have played at least one team appearing in the AP poll every season except 2012.

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