Greg Schiano, Rutgers football get defining win over Miami in Pinstripe Bowl

Rutgers football took a big step forward this season and the Scarlet Knights scored a defining win in the Pinstripe Bowl for Greg Schiano.

Dec 28, 2023; Bronx, NY, USA; Rutgers Scarlet Knights head coach Greg Schiano after the game against
Dec 28, 2023; Bronx, NY, USA; Rutgers Scarlet Knights head coach Greg Schiano after the game against / Mark Smith-USA TODAY Sports

It wasn't just the fact that Rutgers football beat old rival Miami in the Pinstripe Bowl on Thursday, that signified a breakthrough moment -- although it didn't hurt.

The Rutgers football 31-24 win over Miami on Thursday was such a big moment because it cliched a winning season for the Scarlet Knights for the first time since 2014. That was also the last time that they had won a bowl game.

However, this win was still bigger than that. It was a signature win for Schiano -- at least of this era and one was needed. For years, Rutgers football fans have wanted a win over a team like Michigan, Penn State, or Ohio State. And while Miami isn't MIAMI right now -- the Scarlet Knights will take it.

So will Greg Schiano.

Part of the reason Rutgers fans had to love the win, was the way the Scarlet Knights went about it.

Running back Kyle Monangai, who already announced that he's coming back for next season, dominated against Miami in New York, carrying the ball 26 times for 163 yards. Rutgers had three rushing touchdowns total, as well as a blocked punt for a TD in typical Schiano fashion.

Even though bowl games "don't matter" it's clear that the Pinstripe Bowl mattered to Rutgers football. And if it didn't matter to Miami, maybe it should have.

Maybe that's why Miami can't get back because even though it hasn't earned the right to be dismissive of the Pinstripe Bowl -- it was and that's all about coaching. It probably says more about culture and in year two of Mario Cristobal, it's not a good sign.

Yet, as Schiano showed -- it can take time to build it. What's exciting is there could be a chance to keep things rolling as Monangai will be back along with Gavin Wimsatt, if he's able to hold off a potential transfer for the starting job.

At any rate, if there was any concern about Greg Schiano being the right head coach for Rutgers football, that should be put to rest after the 2023 season and the signature win over Miami.