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Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano met with the media on Monday to preview Saturday’s game against the Michigan Wolverines. Schiano currently has the Scarlet Knights at 3-0 and looking for their first 2-0 start in Big Ten play since the team joined the conference in 2014.

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Schiano praised Michigan’s program, head coach Jim Harbaugh, and sounded confident when talking about the opportunity ahead for his young team.

“Great challenge, No. 2 team in the country. It could probably easily take the number 1 spot; They are that good. There are absolutely no weaknesses in this team. When you look at what they have, their offensive line, two-time reigning Offensive Lineman of the Year Joe Moore, an experienced quarterback who can run and throw with accuracy, depth, do all the things, he’s a future first-round quarterback. . . They have two running backs who are as good as anyone in the country. A lot of receivers and tight ends.”

“Let’s move on to the defense: their defensive line is perhaps the best in the country. Big, physical, deep. Linebackers run and hit. The secondary covers well. In the kicking game, they have specialists who are possibly the best in the country. It is definitely a difficult task, but we must make sure we take care of ourselves. That’s what we have to do and that’s what we’ll do in preparation, and then we’ll have a great opportunity to go to Ann Arbor and go play. So I’m looking forward to it.”

Q. You mentioned Kyle (Monangai) was the (Big Ten) Player of the Week. It seems like there are more eyes on your program after starting 3-0. Can you sense any additional excitement from your players, from the fans attending this great game?

You know, I know our players are excited to play it. It’s definitely a big test for us. I think we’re still a little isolated in this building in what we do. I don’t look at things, so I wouldn’t know. I don’t see many people other than our staff, our players and my wife. So I can’t tell you that. I’m probably the worst person in the world to ask about that. But I’m excited. So we have a great opportunity.”

Q. First road trip of the year, going to the Big House, over 100,000 fans, very intimidating environment to play. How do you, as a coach, prepare your players as best as possible to deal with that type of environment?

“I love going on tour, especially the first time you take your 74 guys that you can bring and your staff, and it’s just you and you. Nothing like it. When you come out of that tunnel and everyone is against you and it’s just your guys, it’s a special feeling, one that I think every athlete who has done it appreciates and enjoys. Again, great opportunity. He trained there many times. Excited for the opportunity.”

Q. In your first stage, there was a lot of emotion and great moments. Big games against Louisville come to mind. How did you know your team was ready for a moment like that? Do you feel that way right now?

Well, you never really know. Coaches say, well, I knew we were. Coach Bryant, who was one of the best to coach the sport, said late in his career, “I can’t tell you if my teams are ready. We’ll see.” And if he couldn’t, and Coach Paterno and those guys couldn’t, there’s no reason I can. It’s the human element. You never know. You just go out there and play.

But what you do know is how much you invested in the preparation and how much you invested throughout the entire game, not until the end, but throughout the entire game. Every game on the bench, between series, everything at halftime, all of that is essential to winning and losing. It’s exciting, you put yourself in a position to play these games and then you have to play them, right? You invest a lot beforehand, but then there are those three and a half hours, four hours where you have to do it, and that’s, you know, are we ready to do that? I can’t tell you that. I hope we are. But if we are not, we will be. We just have to keep working at it. But I like this team. I like your thinking. I like leadership. Let’s Play”.

Q. Two parts about Gavin (Wimsatt). How do you think he’s done as a passer in the first three games? Is he satisfied with the progress he has made in that regard? And being on tour, in the biggest atmosphere he’s played in, I don’t think he’s played in Ohio State last year. How do you think he’ll do in an environment like that? Can that progress continue on the road?

I think Gavin is getting better every day. I thought he did a great job on Saturday. You know, three games into the season, he’s protected the ball the way we’ve asked him to. He had bad luck on Saturday. He had three falls and two route errors, two route failures. So, you know, if you take those five and maybe consider four of them to be complete, that really changes the complexion.”

“We don’t throw much. We didn’t need to throw much. We ran efficiently and that was the game. Every game is different. We can throw the ball 60 times this week. You never know what it’s going to cost you, but you do whatever it takes to win the game, or it gives you the best chance of winning the game. But I am satisfied with its development. “He continues to prepare a lot and I think his arrow, his nose, points up.”

Q. Looking back, he coached against Jim Harbaugh in the NFL and coached against him at the college level. What type of relationship, if any, do you have with him?

I have a lot of respect for Jim. He is an excellent soccer coach. He knows how to get the most out of his organization. I don’t have a close relationship. He is more professional. But maximum respect.”

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