Originally posted on Fox Sports Ohio  |  Last updated 10/25/12
Rutgers' run defense is among the best in the nation, and is one reason the Scarlet Knights are unbeaten this late in a season for the first time in six years. Kent State's ground game, meanwhile, has it on the verge of its longest single-season winning streak in 72 years. The No. 18 Scarlet Knights will try to avoid becoming the latest Big East team to fall victim to a Mid-American Conference opponent as they host the upset-minded Golden Flashes on Saturday. Rutgers (7-0) allows 69.1 rushing yards per game, tying Florida State for second in the nation. The Scarlet Knights have yielded only two rushing touchdowns, and haven't allowed a 100-yard rusher in 11 games. The defense dominated in nearly every facet in last weekend's 35-10 win over Temple, surrendering 191 total yards - 72 rushing - while forcing three turnovers. Rutgers is 7-0 for the first time since winning its first nine games of 2006. "I think what you see is a defense that's very stingy," said coach Kyle Flood, who is trying to become the first Rutgers coach to start his career 8-0. "You see a defense that's very determined to make people kick field goals. "We are not going to concede touchdowns. Our defense is not going to do that. They take it very personally." Rutgers may be in for a much stiffer test than originally expected against the Golden Flashes (6-1), who average 33.7 points and 210.4 rushing yards per game during their best start to a season since opening 7-1 in 1973. Since suffering its lone loss at Kentucky, Kent State has averaged 238.0 rushing yards during a five-game win streak. The team hasn't won six in a row since a seven-game run in 1940. The Scarlet Knights are also wary of the matchup since three Big East teams have lost to MAC opponents this season. That includes Toledo's upset of then-No. 21 Cincinnati last week, knocking the Bearcats out of the AP poll with their first loss of the season. "I think every player in our program knows that, and I think they probably also know that Western Michigan beat UConn and Ball State beat South Florida," Flood said. Kent State features an impressive backfield of Dri Archer and Trayion Durham, who have 687 and 649 rushing yards, respectively, and 15 combined TDs. Archer, who averages 10.1 yards per carry, is also a threat out of the backfield, catching 20 passes for 278 yards and three scores. "What makes (Archer) spectacular is the combination of his speed and change of direction," Flood said. "If he gets through your first line of defense and into the open field, he's just a dynamic player. He's a one-step change of direction type of runner, and you'd better get him down early." Archer and Durham were key in last week's 41-24 win over Western Michigan, combining for 186 yards and three touchdowns. Archer added 53 yards on four catches. "I talked to Trayion this summer about being the closer," coach Darrell Hazell said. "For us having to win games in the fourth quarter, he's going to have to carry the ball eight to 10 times. He really took response to that. I think he's done an unbelievable job. "Having the balance of those two guys makes it special. I think if you have only one of them, we're not as good as a football team." The ground game is also important to the Scarlet Knights' success. Jawan Jamison leads the Big East with 779 yards and 177 carries. The sophomore totaled 114 yards on 19 rushes last week and had a 32-yard TD reception among his five catches. Gary Nova tossed four touchdowns against Temple and leads the conference with 15. He had 11 TD passes in 10 games last season. Rutgers has won both previous meetings with Kent State, the most recent coming in Piscataway, N.J. on Sept. 18, 2004.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
One Gotta Go: NFL Legends (and Jose Canseco!) Have No Love For Captain America
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Eagles rookie to join Kaepernick in protesting national anthem

Michael Phelps to be honored with unique Wheaties box

Woman suing Brewers after being struck by foul ball

Report: ‘Strong chance’ J.J. Watt will play in Week 1

Report: Tony Romo could be placed on short-term IR

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Broncos name Trevor Siemian their Week 1 starter

Report: Jets fielding calls for Geno Smith

Report: Bryan Stork fails physical, rights revert to Pats

Eric Berry signs franchise tender, returns to Chiefs

Brandon Jennings takes swipe at Reggie Miller's career

Report: Kaepernick facing ‘uphill battle’ to make roster

Who has the most to prove at the US Open?

A sports history of not standing up for the national anthem

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

Six NFL quarterbacks the Cowboys must consider

Dwight Howard trying new way to improve free throw shooting

Eight players who have stepped up in NFL preseason so far

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

Marshall’s first impression of Fitzpatrick: ‘He was terrible’

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Who has the most to prove at the US Open?

A sports history of not standing up for the national anthem

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

The 20 best boxing movies of all time

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker