Monangai runs for 163 yards and a TD in Rutgers' 31-24 win over Miami in the Pinstripe Bowl
Kyle Monangai rushed for 163 yards and a touchdown to help secure Rutgers' first winning season in almost a decade with a 31-24 victory over Miami in the Pinstripe Bowl on Thursday.
The Scarlet Knights (7-6) last had a winning season in 2014 when they went 8-4 in their inaugural Big Ten season.
“I’m really happy for our team,” said Rutgers coach Greg Schiano. “I’m sure glad I’m doing it at Rutgers. It’s where I’m supposed to be.
“A win here is very important. I’m really excited about where we are headed. It starts with the seniors. They have built the foundation for something special.”
The Scarlet Knights opened this season 6-2 but stumbled in November, losing four straight conference games by an average of 20 points.
“This is a big step for our program,” said Monangai, who carried the ball 25 times. “We worked our butts off.”
Miami (7-6) has dropped five straight bowl games.
Rutgers took the lead for good at 21-17 after Trevor Yeboah-Kodie blocked a Miami punt that Timmy Ward recovered in the end zone.
Hurricanes quarterback Jacurri Brown scored on a 1-yard keeper with 27 seconds to play to draw Miami within seven at 31-24, and then the Hurricanes recovered an onside kick, but the rally fell short when Miami turned the ball over on downs near midfield with seven seconds remaining.
Brown, who hadn’t taken a snap in 2023, was the only healthy scholarship quarterback on the Miami roster. Tyler Van Dyke entered the portal and transferred to Wisconsin.
“I thought he (Brown) made some big plays for us,” said Miami coach Mario Cristobal. “But give Rutgers credit. They pressured us.”