University of Kansas

Game report: Rutgers 27, Kansas 14

Rutgers wide receiver Carlton Agudosi caught a touchdown pass against Kansas’ Tyrone Miller Jr. in the first quarter of Saturday’s game.
Rutgers wide receiver Carlton Agudosi caught a touchdown pass against Kansas’ Tyrone Miller Jr. in the first quarter of Saturday’s game. The Associated Press

First quarter

Key play: After a face-mask penalty kept a drive alive, Rutgers quarterback Chris Laviano hit Carlton Agudosi for a 14-yard touchdown pass with 1:49 left in the quarter.

Key stat: KU was two for five on third down.

Second quarter

Key play: KU defensive end Ben Goodman committed a costly “horse collar” penalty, keeping a Rutgers drive going. Four plays later, Rutgers took a 20-7 lead.

Key stat: KU had 163 yards of total offense.

Third quarter

Key play: Rutgers running back Josh Hicks plowed in from 4 yards out, stretching Rutgers’ lead to 27-7 with 9:24 left in the third quarter.

Key stat: After three quarters, KU was averaging 2.64 yards per carry.

Fourth quarter

Key play: After cutting Rutgers’ lead to 27-14, KU couldn’t convert a fourth down and 7 play with 9 minutes left. Rutgers salted away the clock.

Key stat: KU lost its 31st straight road game.

Player of the game: The Rutgers’ offensive line. Rutgers running backs Josh Hicks and Robert Martin each piled up more than 100 yards on the day. The Scarlet Knights were determined to punish KU on the ground, and by the end, the Rutgers’ offensive line did the job, out-muscling Kansas’ defensive front.

Reason to hope: Well, Kansas did defeat Iowa State last season. The Cyclones are next on the schedule.

Reason to mope: Let it sink in. The Jayhawks will have to score a Big 12 upset to avoid the second winless season in school history.

Looking ahead: The Jayhawks will begin Big 12 play on the road at Iowa State, facing the Cyclones at 11 a.m. on Saturday.

| Rustin Dodd, rdodd@kcstar.com

Report card

D

Offense

The good news: Montell Cozart was efficient again, completing 13 of 18 passes. The bad news: The Rutgers defense totally bottled up KU’s rushing attack, including the dangerous Ke’aun Kinner.

C

Defense

For the first time this year, the Jayhawks held a team under 30 points. That’s progress — even if Rutgers scored just three points in its last game. On the other hand: Rutgers quarterback Chris Laviano is not Aaron Rodgers, and he had his way in the first half.

B

Special

teams

The Jayhawks attempted zero field goals and punter Eric Kahn averaged just 28 yards per punt. That didn’t help field position. KU also gave up a 38-yard punt return.

C

Coaching

Kansas coach David Beaty is trying to play poker with shaky cards. The Jayhawks won the turnover margin and were the less-penalized team. But the Jayhawks never quite felt in the game against a reeling Rutgers team without its head coach.

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