Lunch with Lynch

To hear audio of Bill Lynch’s entire speech, click here.

Indiana football coach Bill Lynch was the guest speaker Tuesday for the Bloomington Rotary meeting at the Indiana Memorial Union, drawing the club’s biggest turnout of the year.

Lynch, in talking about football, said many of the same things he’s been saying since spring football. He said that after being around some really good football teams in his 35 years of coaching and some not so good ones, you can see a difference in the chemistry of the two types of teams. “The ones that are really good, they have it,” he said. “I think we have it.”

Lynch drew laughs in saying he’s been around a couple of teams that weren’t even looking for it. That was just one of several times that Lynch – in one of his first forays as a public speaker since being named head coach – showed he can be pretty funny.

After being introduced by former Monroe circuit court judge Randy Bridges (also Cam Cameron’s father in law) as, among other things, the captain of the football and basketball teams at Butler, Lynch told a story about in his final basketball game at Butler guarding Larry Bird. “I personally held him to 47 points,” Lynch bragged.

But that game went better than a previous matchup that season with Indiana State. In Lynch’s first game against Bird, he thought he had the younger 6-9 player blocked out on a rebound only to watch Bird rise over him and dunk the ball so hard that it bounced off the floor and hit Lynch in the chin, causing him to bite his tongue. “So that was the first two of his 49 that night,” Lynch observed drily.

Lynch also had a sense of humor in talking about his team, which he said is deeper and doesn’t have an obvious hole or two that needs to be filled, as has been the case in previous years. But he did say that following the departure of senior Tyson Beattie, the coaching staff hasn’t yet settled on a replacement.

“We’re going to find a punter,” he said. “If not, by rule we can go for it on fourth down.”

On a more serious note, an audience member asked Lynch how he would make the team his own. He said that he’s not worried about that because what Hoeppner has left behind is a cohesive staff – most with long ties to Hoeppner and/or Lynch – that’s ready to carry on in the direction Hoeppner got started.

“I learned a long time ago that it’s amazing what you can accomplish if you don’t worry about who gets the credit,” Lynch said. “We know this football team’s strength, its weaknesses and the players’ personalities, and they know us. It’s going to be Indiana University’s football team and I think it’s going to be a good one.”