How does Athan Kaliakmanis (as the starting quarterback) change the Rutgers football offense?

With the naming of Athan Kaliakmanis as the starting quarterback, the Rutgers football offense is certainly set to change. And with that, former Rutgers quarterback Mike Teel believes that the change will be tailored to their new quarterback’s skillset.

Kaliakmanis, a multi-year starter in the Big Ten, is certainly not lacking for Power Five experience. And there was and is a belief around the Hale Center that he had a significantly better spring than any other quarterback on the Rutgers roster.

So the former Minnesota quarterback takes over an offense brimming with potential and will be protected by a veteran offensive line. All of this means that there is a chance that the Rutgers offense can take the next step in what will be their second season under offensive coordinator Kirk Ciarrocca.

And Kaliakmanis, who was recruited and coach by Ciarrocca to Minnesota, knows this system well.

This leads Teel, a legend of the Rutgers program, to believe that the offense with Kaliakmanis taking the snaps is likely to look different than the past two years under Gavin Wimsatt.

“I think you call plays, you draw ups plays and you scheme up plays as an offensive coordinator to benefit your personnel,” Teel told Rutgers Wire.

“Rutgers has the best running back in the Big Ten returning, Kyle Monangai He’s supposed to run the football right?  It’s always great when a quarterback can run the ball because it adds that extra number to the run game that the defense has to account for and I think there were times when Gavin did a great job of adding that extra dimension to the offense last year.

“But at the end of the day, I think if you can use the pass game, meaning the quick game, to supplement some of those quarterback runs whether it’s through RPOs or whether it’s through that three-step concept -the hitches, the slants, the quick outs…you have an off corner to the boundary throw…the quick hitch…right now I think you’ll see a lot more of those type plays to offset the quarterback run.”

Wimsatt entered the transfer portal on Wednesday.

Teel is the all-time leading passer in Rutgers football history. He currently works as an analyst on Rutgers football broadcasts.

In the spring game, Kaliakmanis was more athletic than advertised, showing the ability to move around in the pocket and carry the ball downfield. But he is first and foremost a pocket quarterback who has a quick release as well as the ability to make plays down the field.

That, Teel believes, is likely to be an asset in balancing this offense.

“So at the end of the day, if teams are going to stack the box, going to put nine guys, eight guys in the box – I think you have to make them pay,” Teel said.

“You can do that by throwing the ball and using the quick game which is what I think they will try to do as the season comes.”


Story originally appeared on Rutgers Wire