Notes and highlights from Kevin Wilson’s radio show #iufb

Jordan Howard is “doing more” in practice this week, Kevin Wilson reported on his weekly radio show Wednesday.

Whether the junior running back will be ready for Saturday’s game at Michigan State, Wilson isn’t sure.

Howard, who hasn’t played since the Ohio State game on Oct. 3, is still working his way back from an ankle injury suffered in the first half against the Buckeyes. Wilson repeated his stance from earlier this week, saying Howard’s status is essentially day-to-day.

“He’s practiced, but he’s got to practice workload this week,” Wilson said. “He’s no worse for wear. We’ll see as we go through our walkthrough (Thursday) and as we ramp up on Friday, we’ll see where he is.”

Wilson said there were no other injury concerns to come out of Saturday’s loss to Rutgers. Nate Sudfeld is fine and practicing, as is tight end Michael Cooper, who rolled his ankle but continued playing last weekend against the Scarlet Knights.

Other radio show highlights can be found after the jump:

— Indiana is using its Sunday evening walkthroughs to get more experience and repetitions for second- and third-team players. Two weeks ago, Wilson said he told his coaching staff to use the time to get those players the kind of work that they otherwise aren’t receiving during IU’s most physical practices on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

“We’ve kind of ramped up our Sunday and I told the players, ‘We’re not trying to punish you. This is not extra work for you. This is so the coaches can see you gain more confidence and increase your role,'” Wilson said. “That’s what Mike (Majette did). We’re doing it with Danny Cameron and Zander Diamont and Donovan Hale at receiver. We’re bringing along Greg Gooch who moved from linebacker to bandit, Chris Covington. We’re doing a lot of work like that to bring those guys along because we need to play more kids as we get ready to go down the stretch.”

— Wilson touched on the expanded roles that his players have assumed in the recruiting world, discussing how much he relies on their input when IU decides to pursue a high school prospect.

“Shane Wynn called me twice (on past visits) to say, ‘You don’t want this dude, coach. He don’t fit us. Trust me,'” Wilson said. “Alright. We wouldn’t push for him and we’d go after other guys. We’ve attracted kids that buy us and like us. Recruiting is like dating. You get attracted to certain people and they get attracted to you. I think that’s just where we’re at in our recruiting and why it’s going in a great way.”

— One fan asked Wilson why Indiana eases off the gas pedal when it has sizable leads. “How many sizable leads have we had?” Wilson joked. “Everyone says we don’t win enough around here.”

— Another fan asked Wilson about the importance of extra practices that bowl games afford a team in December. Wilson says the practices are fine, but bowl games mean so much more to a growing program than extra time on task.

“You get extra practices, that’s correct,” Wilson said. “You need that. That’s great. It’s also just great exposure. It leads to consistency of the program and shows you’re doing well. The practices are part of it, but there’s a lot that’s part of going to a bowl that builds your program for future recruiting, for consistency, for fan base, for ticket sales, for positive energy and positive vibes across the board. Everybody says you have to be a bowl team. I want this team to be the best it can. That, to me, is better than just being a bowl team. We have goals and that’s one of our goals, but our true goal every day is to get better, have energy, keep improving and be the best we can. There’s enough talent for this to be a very, very good football team.”

— Wilson closed the show by repeating his mission statement for the season.

“All I’m trying to do with our football team is lead our coaches in the direction that our kids have confidence in what they’re doing, they’re aggressive with what they’re doing and they go after it,” Wilson said. “If you make the play, you make the play. If you make the block, you make the block. But you gotta keep going after it. You’re not gonna play well and beat Michigan State and programs like that by sitting around hoping they have an off day. They’re not gonna be perfect, but you have to aggressively go after the opponent.

“We had a really good game last week going, but we lost it. We accentuated a lot of positives and talked about maintaining your focus and effort and never taking the game for granted and never thinking your out of it because we can show a lot of teams have been out of it that have come back and won it. Our opponent last week was out of it and they just kept playing. We’ve been behind and came back. You’ve got to keep playing. We’re preaching and preaching, and I think we’ll see this week if we truly have the leadership and the senior players that I think we have. We’ve had an awesome week of practice. This is a good football team that’s close to exploding and getting over the hump. We haven’t figured it out and we’re not great, but this is a really good football team. We’re really getting close to playing good football. We want to start doing that more consistently.”

4 comments

  1. This loser’s in denial. The only thing close to exploding is the patience of the 25,000 or so masochists who still insist on attending home football games. Fire this assistant coach so he can be one step closer to coordinating the Charlotte 49ers.

  2. Make Indiana football great again.

    Oh wait, it’s never been great. Not even decent. Wilson: 4 more years! 4 more years!

  3. IU is a better and more competitive team against the top teams in this conference. The following weeks are important just as Rutgers game was important. We let Rutgers get away now we need to see if we can get a few games from teams we aren’t supposed to beat. There is time for this team to do the things they have talked about doing. I hope they do finish this season playing like they believe they can as the young players are talented and it will help them in the future to see how to play winning football.

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