Rutgers quarterback Gary Nova has been a revelation this season under new offensive coordinator Ralph Friedgen. The senior – who seemingly has been in scarlet since Greg Schiano‘s first season – has risen from 52nd to 41st nationally in passing efficiency. He’s completed 118-of-197 passes (59.9 percent) for 1,949 yards with 14 touchdowns against nine interceptions, boosting his yards per attempt average from 7.1 to 9.9.
Nova’s improved play has been a key reason Rutgers is off to a 5-3 start in its first Big Ten campaign. And now, the Scarlet Knights may be without him.
Nova injured his knee during Saturday’s 42-24 loss to No. 16 Nebraska, slamming it hard against the turf late in the second quarter in an unsuccessful attempt to avoid the charging Maliek Collins. He completed 8-of-19 passes for 156 yards with a touchdown and an interception, leaving the game as the Scarlet Knights trailed 21-7.
“I would tell you we got a positive report today, but he’s still on crutches,” head coach Kyle Flood told NJ.com. “I really don’t think we’re going to know anything until probably Tuesday morning, for sure. But we did get a positive report today. … We’ll wait until we have all of the information and then we’ll make the decision. And we may not be able to make the decision early in the week, but I don’t even know if that will be the case just yet.”
Freshman Chris Laviano played the second half, seeing his first substantial game action of his career with four completions in seven attempts for 49 yards.
“I think the team has same confidence in Chris that I have, and Chris has done a good job in practice. I thought they responded very well to him in the second half. I thought they played with good energy,” said Flood.
Nova could still see action against Wisconsin on Saturday even if he misses practice time this week.
“The less you practice, the harder it gets. That’s for sure,” Flood said. “But Gary has played a lot of football over the last four years and that certainly would help him if he is limited in practice. But we don’t know that he will be (limited).”