It works out that after Rutgers plays against an Air Raid team, we preview another spread team. Indiana, however, is not a pass-only team like the Cougars. Just this past week, the Hoosiers ran for a staggering 455 yards on the ground, led by an impressive effort from junior running back Tevin Coleman (23 attempts, 248 yards, 1 TD). With a powerful ground game and a potent air attack, Indiana is poised to have one of the nation's top offenses once again in 2014.
Head Coach: Kevin Wilson (4th year)
Key returning players: QB Nate Sudfeld, RB Tevin Coleman, WR Shane Wynn
2013 Record: 5-7 (3-5 B1G)
The Hoosiers first game of 2014 was against lowly Indiana State (just 1-11 as an FCS team in 2013), so the final score of 28-10 is a little concerning. Looking at the box score, however, shows that the Indiana offense is clicking just fine, at least on the ground. Kevin Wilson has a great spread QB in Nate Sudfeld, but he's built a multi-faceted offense that can kill you with the rush or the pass. Shane Wynn and Tevin Coleman are electrifying players, and it's a plus that Rutgers doesn't have to face them until late in the season.
If the offense is something to be afraid of, the defense is the exact opposite. No matter what they tried, Indiana was flat-out awful on defense in 2013. Even in a win against Penn State, the Hoosiers gave up 340 passing yards. They definitely bring back a lot of experience at every level of the defense, including the top seven linebackers from a year ago, but they'll have to adjust from a 4-3 base defense to a 3-4. New DC Brian Knorr would like to be more aggressive with his scheme, but Indiana struggled with giving up big plays in 2013, so that is a must-fix if they want to be successful.
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After getting better each year during his tenure in Bloomington, Kevin Wilson is poised for a breakout campaign with the Hoosiers, as many project Indiana for a bowl berth. The offense is there; the question is the defense. If he can put it all together, the Big Ten's basketball school could be football-crazed in the month of December.