Pat Flaherty hired as Rutgers offensive line coach

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Pat Flaherty, a member of two Super Bowl-winning staffs with the New York Giants, is returning to Rutgers as the offensive line coach.

Coach Greg Schiano announced the hiring on Wednesday. The 66-year-old Flaherty started his coaching career at a Pennsylvania high school in the late 1970s.

“Pat is a highly respected coach and someone I have known for a long time,” said Schiano, who hired Flaherty as a consultant last season. “His experience will be beneficial to the development of our offensive line. We all know the Big Ten is a line-of-scrimmage league and Pat understands what it takes to be successful at the highest level.”

Flaherty spent two decades coaching in the college ranks, including a stint as the Scarlet Knights’ offensive line coach from 1984-91. He also coached at East Stroudsburg, Penn State, East Carolina, Wake Forest and Iowa.

His NFL career started with a job in Washington. He went to Chicago before working for the Giants for a stint that lasted from 2004-2015. During that time, the Giants won Super Bowls after the 2007 and 2011 seasons with lines that included three Pro Bowl selections: Chris Snee, David Diehl and Shaun O’Hara, a former Scarlet Knight.

This will be Flaherty’s first coaching job since 2019 when he was the offensive line coach for the Miami Dolphins. He served as an analyst at Penn State in 2019-20 and as a consultant for the Giants in 2021. He also coached in the NFL with San Francisco and Jacksonville.

No. 11 Penn State beats Rutgers for the 16th straight time

Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – James Franklin picked up his 100th career coaching victory by seeing No. 11 Penn State make big plays in every phase of the game.

Sean Clifford ran for a touchdown and threw for another and the Nittany Lions scored twice on fumble returns and once on a kickoff return in beating Rutgers 55-10 Saturday.

Freshman Nick Singleton scored on a 100-yard kickoff return, Kobe King gave Penn State (9-2, 6-2 Big Ten) the lead for good with a 14-yard fumble return and Ji'Ayir Brown rumbled 70 yards with another fumble as the Nittany Lions blew it open in the second half.

“We’re playing really good complementary football,” Franklin said. “We scored three non-offensive touchdowns, which is special. We’re playing really good on defense.”

Clifford (17 of 26 for 157 yards) threw a 10-yard TD pass to Tyler Warren and scored on a 14-yard run as the Nittany Lions beat Rutgers (4-7, 1-7) for the 16th straight time.

Penn State led 28-10 at the half and the game was all but over after Curtis Jacobs sacked freshman quarterback Gavin Wimsatt on the fourth play of the second half and Brown picked up the fumble and had a clear path to the end zone.

“I thought we were dominant,” said Jacobs, who felt the scoop and score turned the momentum. “We had a little mishap early, but we were able to get back to where we were supposed to be.”

The last time Penn State scored on offense, defense and special teams in a game was in 2017 against Indiana.

Freshman Kaytron Allen rushed for 117 yards and scored on an 8-yard run as Penn State won its third straight. The Nittany Lions defense limited Rutgers to 167 yards and forced three turnovers that led to 21 points.

Freshman quarterback Gavin Wimsatt (10-of-29 for 122) threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to Shameen Jones in the first quarter to give Rutgers its last last at 10-7. The Scarlet Knights have lost 37 straight games to ranked opponents, a run that dates to 2009. The 55 points were the most it has allowed this season.

Rutgers coach Greg Schiano said his team’s margin of error is very slim. He felt the biggest play might have happened in the second quarter with his team trailing 14-10. Penn State punt Barney Amor mishandled a snap and was tackled near his own 20-yard line.

An offside penalty allowed Penn State to keep possession.

“We’re not quite good enough yet to overcome that,” Schiano said, noting later he sincerely believes that Scarlet Knights are getting better as a program and will challenge for a league title down the road.


Singleton and Allen are the first two freshmen in conference history to run for at least 700 yards for the same team.

“It just shows that we’re doing something right as (an offensive line) unit,” lineman Sam Wormley said. “That our running backs are able to trust us and hit the holes and believe in our blocks and we’re going to make that block. It just shows that as a unit, we’re all coming together.”

NOTES: … Singleton’s return was the first for Penn State since Lamont Wade had a 100-yarder against Michigan State in 2020. … It was the second kickoff returned for a TD against Rutgers this season. Jaylin Lucas of Indiana opened a game here with a 93-yarder earlier this month. King’s TD was the Nittany Lions’ first fumble return for a TD since Torrence Brown had a 9-yard return in 2016. … Rutgers punter Adam Korsak punted 12 times and now has an NCAA record 339 attempts, breaking the old mark of 337 set by Alexander Kinal of Wake Forest (2012-15). His 14,876 yards punting is also a record, betting old mark of 14,546 by Derek Admas of Kent State-Northwestern (2016-2021).


Penn State: The Nittany Lions are still in the running for a major bowl berth. If No. 2 Ohio State and No. 3 Michigan get berths in the college football playoffs, if might be the Rose Bowl. The two undefeated team meet next Saturday in Columbus, Ohio.

Rutgers: The Scarlet Knights have lost four straight and their hopes for a second-straight postseason game are over.


Penn State: plays host to Michigan State.

Rutgers: at Maryland.

Rutgers fires coordinator Sean Gleeson as offense struggles


PISCATAWAY, N.J. — Rutgers fired offensive coordinator Sean Gleeson two days after the team’s third straight Big Ten loss.

Head coach Greg Schiano announced the move, which comes following the sixth game of Gleeson’s third season with the Scarlet Knights (3-3, 0-3 Big Ten).

Letting go of the 36-year-old Gleeson marks the first time that Schiano has let go of a coach mid-season.

“It’s my job to make sure we’re playing complimentary football and I feel our football team can win plenty of games when we play complementary football and as the head coach, that’s your job,” Schiano said. “And when it’s not happening, you try to fix it.”

The Rutgers offense has struggled this season. The team ranks No. 108 in total offense (334 yards per game), No. 104 in scoring offense (22.8 PPG) and No. 118 in team passing efficiency. Rutgers lost to Nebraska (3-3, 2-1) 14-13, mustering 85 total yards and no points in the second half.

Meanwhile, Rutgers ranks No. 14 in total defense and No. 16 in third-down conversion percentage defense.

“In college football, at the end of the day, you need to score points. And we just aren’t scoring enough points, and I want our offense to be as much of a weapon as our defense right now. That’s not to drive any kind of wedge. I think we’re capable of doing that.”

Tight ends coach Nunzio Campanile will serve as the interim offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. Campanile served as the interim head coach at Rutgers between Schiano’s hiring and his predecessor Chris Ash‘s firing.

While he has a short list of candidates in his back pocket, Schiano said he will focus on Gleeson’s permanent replacement after the season. As the interim, Campanile will essentially have a seven-week tryout, Schiano said.

Gleeson was hired by Schiano as his first offensive coordinator in his second stint at the school.

Rutgers has the week off before hosting Indiana (3-3, 1-2 Big Ten) on Saturday, Oct. 22.

Gleeson, from Glenn Ridge, New Jersey, was the first Rutgers assistant to be paid over a million dollars. He’ll be paid the remainder of his salary on his deal, which is set to expire after 2023. He will be paid $1,025,000 this year and $1,050,000 in 2023.

Seen as a wunderkind for his work coordinating Princeton and Oklahoma State’s offense, he began his tenure at Rutgers with some innovative play-calling. However, the offense has struggled to produce yards or points this season.

The Scarlet Knights have had a quarterback carousel, with senior captain Noah Vedral injured to start the season. Prized recruit Gavin Wimsatt was injured in the third game of the season, and Evan Simon was also splitting time.

“I believe we can win games this year, otherwise, I wouldn’t have made this change,” Schiano said. “You can do it the traditional way and wait until the end of the season, but I believe we can win games this year if we play complimentary football. That’s why it happened now.”