PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Rutgers football head coach Greg Schiano announced that seniors Ryan Blaszczyk (Medford Lakes, N.J.), Ryan D’Imperio (Sewell, N.J.) and Devin McCourty (Nanuet, N.Y.) have been named team captains for the 2009 season. The three seniors have been part of Rutgers’ four consecutive teams that have appeared in bowl games, including three straight bowl championships.
Blaszczyk, a fifth-year senior, enters his third full season as the starting center for the Scarlet Knights. He has started 26 straight games at center for the Scarlet Knights and has been a member of the Rimington Watch List for two consecutive seasons. Blaszczyk is a preseason All-BIG EAST selection by Phil Steele, Sporting News and Lindy’s.
D’Imperio is set to begin his fourth year “On the Banks”. The South Jersey native finished second on the team with 93 tackles in 2008, his first full year as a starter at middle linebacker for the Scarlet Knights. A Second Team All-BIG EAST selection a year ago, D’Imperio ranked fifth in the league with 7.15 tackles per game in 2008.
McCourty follows in the footsteps of his twin brother Jason, who served as a team captain in 2008 for the Scarlet Knights. Entering his fifth year in the program, McCourty has been a starter at cornerback since 2007. He led the team in pass breakups with seven in 2008 and ended the season with 57 tackles.
The Scarlet Knights closed out the 2008 season with seven consecutive victories, including a 29-23 win over NC State in the PapaJohns.com Bowl. The Scarlet Knights have appeared in four consecutive bowls and have won three straight bowl championships.
The seven-game win streak is tied for the fourth longest active streak in the nation.
Rutgers opens the 2009 season Monday, Sept. 7 vs. Cincinnati at Rutgers Stadium. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. on ESPN.