PISCATAWAY, New Jersey (Ticker) -- While Rashad Anderson remains hospitalized, Charlie Villanueva continues to take charge for Connecticut.
Villanueva scored 21 points, grabbed 11 rebounds and was among five players in double figures as No. 18 Connecticut routed Rutgers, 85-63, in a Big East Conference game.
The Huskies (17-6, 9-3 Big East), who have won five of six, moved into second place in the conference standings, two games behind Boston College, which beat Syracuse, 65-60.
Villanueva posted his second straight double-double to help fill the void left by Anderson, the team's leading scorer, who has missed three games with an infected skin abscess on his right leg.
"This was definitely a statement game," Villanueva said. "When we played them in Hartford, coach Calhoun said this was going to be a different game here in the RAC. We took that to heart in practice."
Denham Brown scored seven straight points and Connecticut broke open the game with a 26-5 run in the first half. Consecutive dunks by Rudy Gay and Josh Boone and a three-point play from Villanueva helped give the Huskies a 37-13 lead.
"We really shared the basketball," Huskies coach Jim Calhoun said. "We have a six-pass rule in practice. We can't shoot unless we have six passes. We jumped on them man-to-man and blocked some shots, which instigated the fast break."
Rutgers (8-15, 2-11) scored the next 12 points, capped by a three-point play by Quincy Douby, to get within 37-25, before Connecticut closed the half with seven straight points for a 44-25 edge at intermission.
The Scarlet Knights shot 28 percent (10-of-36) from the floor and made 1-of-9 3-pointers on the way to their largest halftime deficit this season.
The Huskies continued to push the ball after the break and opened the second half with a 17-6 burst. 3-pointers from Boone and Marcus Williams extended the margin to 61-31.
"The threes definitely opened up everything," Boone said. "Early on, they were attacking the ball. But after we hit our first couple (of) threes, it made it easier for us to run our offense."
Boone made 8-of-10 shots en route to 21 points and Brown added 18 for Connecticut, which had a 42-29 rebounding edge and gave coach Jim Calhoun his 697th victory.
Marquis Webb scored 15 points and Manny Quezada added 12 for the Scarlet Knights, who have lost 12 of the last 13 meetings with the Huskies and 12 of 14 overall.
"They (Connecticut) have gotten much better than when we first played them," Rutgers coach Gary Waters said. "It wasn't an effort issue with us. They outplayed us. You can't go a 10- minute stretch and score two points and stay in the game."
After posting a 16-2 home record last season, Rutgers has lost seven home games for the first time since joining the conference in 1995-1996.