“It all happened so fast,” recounts Mike O’Brien of Bridgewater, NJ, a die-hard Rutgers fan of 20 years who was attacked in his home on Monday evening by the Rutgers Scarlet Knight himself. “I woke up to the sound of galloping outside my window realizing it was a horse. Before I knew it I just saw a flash of red and crazed blue eyes burst through my bedroom window and I was on the ground. When I woke up there were Block R’s scattered in my yard.”
David Russo, a lifelong Rutgers fan of Cranbury, NJ, was attacked while he was in his open garage on the same night. “I was at my workbench when suddenly I was in a chokehold. All I could see were soft silver gloves, then I was out.” He goes on to say that he only knew it was the Scarlet Knight because of the horse footprints in his yard and the magnetic Block R’s left on his garage floor.
Another victim, who did not want to be named and is also a Rutgers fan, was attacked in Hazlet while on a walk on Sunday afternoon in broad daylight.
These are just three of a growing number of attacks by the Scarket Knight across New Jersey, ranging from Sparta to Toms River over the past few days. The similarities in these attacks are that all victims had criticized the Rutgers Football program on social media within 24 hours prior to being attacked. Before he was attacked, O’Brien had Tweeted, “I don’t reasonably see Rutgers going more than 3-9.” Where on Facebook, Russo had commented earlier in the day, “There are few ways Coach Ash can keep his job after this season.” The unnamed victim had criticized Ash’s decision to not publicly announce the starting QB ahead of what should be an incredibly easy game. There’s a lot of pressure ahead of this season and many fans are frustrated with the lack of progress and poor indication that things will be any better this year, and they are taking out said frustrations on social media. Clearly, the Scarlet Knight is displeased with this.
When I reached out to the university for comment, they confirmed that they have lost track of the Scarlet Knight Mascot and his horse and are doing everything they can to recover them and are cooperating with local and state authorities.
There’s a lot of fear among the fanbase right now. To protect themselves, many Rutgers fans are choosing to exclusively say positive things about Rutgers Football, while simultaneously fighting critical comments. Rutgers fans are also quite tense with in-fighting between those who continue to still be reasonably critical of the team’s progress in spite of the potential threat, and those who, mostly through fear that the Scarlet Knight will hurt them, are only sharing positive comments, and acting as apologists for the team, currently 7-29 over the last three seasons.
“I’m not going to stifle my thoughts on this team just because the Scarlet Knight is attacking Rutgers fans who are critical. The team deserves criticism.” writes Kyle Ferguson on Facebook.
“I’m going to fight everything negative that is said about the football team, even comments that are technically reasonable because I want to ensure I don’t get attacked by the Scarlet Knight,” Tweeted @Mikey1766.
Another fan reached out to us to say, “It’s terrible. I feel that I must constantly Tweet ONLY positive things about Rutgers Football to stay safe. I hate having this fear. But still, at least we’re not Texas.”
Though not all Rutgers fans are worried. “I have nothing to fear because I never have anything critical to say about Rutgers Football and I love everything about the team. Through thick and thin!” said Adam Platt of Jersey City.
We are unable to confirm if the Scarlet Knight is attacking fans of other teams that criticize Rutgers Football, however, caution should be exercised by all.
The Scarlet Knight is armed with a foam sword and considered dangerous f you’re a reasonably critical Rutgers fan, so we advise discretion until he is recaptured. Hopefully, the Scarlet Knight will be caught soon and fans can once again feel safe to criticize the team. The Rutgers Scarlet Knight was last seen on his horse on Route 1 in West Windsor, NJ, with the bloodied body of a dead mountain lion on the back of his horse.
“It looked like the mountain lion was painted with orange and black stripes,” said one bystander who caught a glimpse of the deranged Scarlet Knight on Tuesday morning while driving to work.
To be clear, this is satire, but it might as well be true given the way certain Rutgers fans act towards Rutgers fans who have valid criticisms about the football team...