Rutgers Postgame Report: Scarlet Knights Defeat Viginia Tech for first time in 31-years

Sep 16, 2023; Piscataway, New Jersey, USA; Rutgers Scarlet Knights running back Kyle Monangai (5) carries the ball as Virginia Tech Hokies safety Caleb Woodson (20) and safety Jaylen Jones (15) pursue during the second half at SHI Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports


The Rutgers Scarlet Knights (3-0, 1-0 Big Ten) once again leaned on a strong running attack to wear down the Virginia Tech Hokies (1-2, 0-0 ACC) in a 35-16 win in front of 52,657 fans in Piscataway. The win, 31-years in the making, moves Rutgers to 3-0 on the season with a date against the No. 2 Michigan Wolverines next weekend in the Big House. 

The Scarlet Knights once again featured a run heavy attack, Rutgers rushed for 256 yards in total. The Rutgers’ running attack was once again centered on RB Kyle Monangai, the Roseland, NJ native rushed for 143-yards and three touchdowns.  QB Gavin Wimsatt added a wrinkle to the Rutgers’ rushing attack, the Owensboro, KY native  ran for a career-high 87-yards and a touchdown.  Wimsatt also added a touchdown pass to WR Christian Dremel, however the Scarlet Knights passing attack was nearly nonexistent.  Wimsatt only completed seven passes for 46-yards and the touchdown to Dremel. 

The Scarlet Knights’ defense once again caused havoc for the opposing offense forcing two turnovers and four sacks.  DE Wesley Bailey recovered a fumble by VaTech QB Kyron Drones on the opening play of the game to set up a 19-yard Monangai touchdown run on the next play.  S Flip Dixon continued to impress as the newest piece of the Rutgers secondary, the Minnesota transfer registered eight total tackles and an interception.  LB Tyreem Powell led Rutgers with 11 total tackles including one TFL and one sack.  DE Aaron Lewis, CB Robert Longerbeam, and DT Mayan Ahanotu all registered a sack along with Powell. Saturday marked the third consecutive game Rutgers has held their opponent under 20-points.

Scoring Summary


Offensive Game Ball

  • Rutgers RB Kyle Monangai- No surprise here, Monangai has been the offensive MVP for the Rutgers Scarlet Knights through the first three-games of the 2023 season. Monangai once again but the Scarlet Knights’ on his back when they needed it most and helped put away Virginia Tech. The Don Bosco Prep producted added 142-yards and three more touchdowns to his season total.

Defensive Game Ball

  • Rutgers S Flip Dixon– Rutgers’ safety Flip Dixon has been the surprise of the early season for the Scarlet Knights.  The Minnesota transfer continues to make big play after big play for the Rutgers defense. Saturday was no exception.  Dixon added eight total tackles, an interception, and a key pass breakup when the momentum was clearly with the Hokies.

Game Notes

  • Saturday was Rutgers firat win against Virginia Tech since 10/31/1992.
  • The win moves Rutgers to 3-0 for the third consecutive season.
  • Rutgers’ WR Christian Dremel scored his first career touchdown on Saturday.
  • Rutgers’ RB Kyle Monangai eclipsed the career 1,000 yard rushing mark (1,039).
  • Rutgers’ LB Tyreem Powell’s 11 TOT was a career high.
  • OL Kamar Missouri and TE Shawn Bowman made their first career starts for Rutgers.

Injury Notes

  • Rutgers was without starting OT Tyler Needham (lower leg), and WR Chris Long due to injury.
  • RB Aaron Young was not listed on the Big Ten pre-game availability report however he did not play.

Rutgers vs. Virginia Tech Box Score

Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
VaTech 0 3 7 6 16
Rutgers 7 14 0 14 35


Next for the Scarlet Knights

  • 🏈 Rutgers Scarlet Knights vs. No. 2 Michigan Wolverines
  • 📅 When: Saturday, September 23, 2023
  • 🕖 Time: Noon EDT
  • 🏟 Where: Ann Arbor, MI | Michigan Stadium
  • 📺 Broadcast: Big Ten Network