Lynch says team will bounce back

Bill Lynch is used to the question and the situation. In the last two seasons, his Indiana team has suffered a few crippling blowouts and more gut-wrenching late game losses that have driven reporters to ask how he expects his team to pick themselves off the canvas for the next week.

Every time he’s been asked, Lynch has said he has no concerns about his team being in the right emotional state, and he isn’t worried about it now after the Hoosiers lost an 18-13 heartbreaker to Iowa on Saturday when junior wide receiver Damarlo Belcher dropped the game-winning touchdown pass in the end zone.

“It’s hard,” Lynch said. “I’d be misleading you if I said its not a problem at all, but sure it’s hard. But I think it goes to the character of the kids we have in the program, and I think that’s very important. It’s something that we’ve worked very hard to develop here. We’ve talked about different things at different times, but the leadership that we’ve developed, I think it starts with the seniors, but it certainly works all the way through the classes. I think they do a good job of helping each other out. Just reading some of the quotes after the game, I think that wasn’t a prompted response by me or anyone else before they went and talked to you guys after the game. I think that’s how they sincerely feel about it. I also think they know how close we are. We’ve been a play away quite a bit, or we’ve been a series away quite a bit. If you keep knocking on that door, that’s the approach we’re taking and how we’ll approach it this week.”

A question Lynch had a harder time coming up with a definitive response to was why the Hoosiers are always on the losing end of close games like Saturday’s and what exactly it takes to get over the hump.

“If I had the answer to that, we’d fix it,” Lynch said. “We’re close, and you have to just keep banging away at it. You have to keep believing and you’ve gotta keep working and you’ve gotta keep preparing. And all those kinds of things. There isn’t a magic to it. It’s not like if you pick up the phone and call somebody, they’ll say ‘Well if you do this, then all the sudden that will get it done.’ Or if you play somebody different, that will get it done, or if you call different plays or different defenses. I’ve seen it through the years. Once you get it, then it sticks. There’s a confidence that goes with that. The thing that you ask of your team is to give you great effort and prepare and compete the way they have. You can’t ask for any more than that. That’s why it’s coming and it will. We’ve just gotta keep pounding away at it.”

More Notes from Lynch’s Press Conference:

  • Lynch said Belcher is holding up well after the devastating drop on Saturday. “He’ll be fine,” Lynch said. “It’s tough. That’s part of playing sports. Who was the great pro I saw the ball bounced off his hands and chest, was an interception the other day when they were driving? Andre Johnson? That’s part of it. Anyone who plays and plays at a high level, that’s going to happen. That’s part of being in the arena.”
  • Lynch said he’s uncertain about the status of wide receiver Tandon Doss (concussion) and left tackle Andrew McDonald (ankle), who both left Saturday’s game with injuries. He said they will not practice Monday and will go from there. Lynch said he expects to get tight end Max Dedmond (knee) back soon as well as safety Chris Adkins. Lynch said Adkins dressed on Saturday for the first time this year, but he didn’t play.
  • Lynch said punters Chris Hagerup and Adam Pines are now in competition for the job. Hagerup has started the last three seasons, but Hagerup has been blocked three times in the last three weeks and Pines played the second half on Saturday. “They’re gonna compete during the week,” Lynch said. “Adam did a nice job the first time he’s done it. They’ve been competing over the last couple of weeks in practice. They’ve had equal reps.”

40 comments

  1. for such a nice guy and great recruiter…he says all the wrong stuff to the press. There should have been urgency and some calling out 3-4 weeks back!!! He comes off like it is NO big deal, blah blah blah…

  2. Coach Lynch positively stated what he should say, exactly what he believed.

    To hell with giving the media more to embellish.

  3. The punters, both of them, are entirely to slow in their progression. It seems like an eternity from the time they catch the ball to the time they kick the ball.

  4. J Pat,

    At this point, do you even care what Lynch says? He will never say what is really going on, he will always put a positive spin on things and always give the other team credit for IU’s failures.

    I think it’s comical, you can almost predict to the word what his post game comments are going to be.

  5. You’ve got to give Lynch credit for not allowing the slightest hint of concern to enter in to the tone of his comments. For goodness sake, man, you just lost your fifth Big Ten game is a row! Where’s the passion and fire? Either he’s a real good poker player or maybe Lynch knows something the rest of us don’t. he certainly does not sound like a man about to lose his job.

    Yea, you can tell he’s gotten used to losing. This is just par for Lynch’s course! Time to get packing Mr. Lynch.

  6. Bill Lynch is a good man and leads his team with integrity. I am proud to have him represent of football program, university and state.

  7. Did we really need this thread before our basketball game was to begin? Between the over-dramatization of the Zeller decision and the negative energy always surrounding the football follies, it’s a wonder anyone can appreciate the simple joy of cheering on the Hoosiers. The gum-tossing guy is toast. Not everyone is capable of selling their true emotions on a podium. Just witness how jaded Barack Obama appears after such a harsh cry the discontented American voter. Should we think he doesn’t care? Much of this looks like unnecessary roughness and the taking of cheap shots while piling on? I’m throwin’ the flag.

  8. bonenails; Yes, Lynch “is a good man and leads his team with integrity.” But I think his job description requires a little more than just being honest and not cheating. Like being a competent coach! And where is he leading his team? Right on to the list of “Worst College FB teams.”

    Please don’t tell me that being a “good man” and leading “with integrity” is all you require or expect from IU’s Head FB coach. I promise, IU you can find men with those attributes that can also coach a team to a few Big Ten wins. Surely competance and results factor into the equasion at some point for you.

  9. Very nice Ferris.

    What the hell do you guys want him to do? Publicy berate his team? Rule #1 of coaching: you NEVER call your players out through the press. You say all the right things to the media, then do all the yelling and screaming behind closed doors. I think he’s just trying to keep an even keel, if he changes his demeanor now it would be too late and the team wouldn’t buy into it. To add to that point, despite the blow outs and heartbreakers, he still has this team playing hard, and players don’t play hard unless the believe in thier coach (see: Dallas Cowboys)
    He has not lost this team, and I beleive they will fight to the bitter end for him. That plus the great recruiting class he has coming in next year, the fact IU can’t afford to eat his salary and pay another coach, and I think he’s going to be back next year. So go ahead and settle in for another year of boring old Bill.

  10. Matts, I read you on CBS and on here and enjoy what you have to say. I was not saying to call out individual players at all…I am saying that whether is be certain positions or coaches, dropping some hints here and there would not hurt…to let us know that he DOES know what the hell is going on and that he actually cares. Have you listened to him on the radio?…it is the same old crap and a few plays here and there and this and that. It is crazy and it makes me crazy! I will admit the team looked better on Saturday but before that, he had lost the team. I traveled to Illinois to watch IU throw in the towel! I am over losing!!!

  11. Coach Lynch is the same kind of man whether he is fighting or marching. Live with it. Deal with it.

  12. Clarion, did you see where I gave this team credit for last weekend…where I gave the coaches credit??? I call it like I see it postive or negative. You have been mighty quiet about football lately I have noticed. I have never complained on here like many have about Lynch and what he says in the press but enough is enough. His passive way is not working…he is NO Tony Dungy for sure. I am dealing with it Thank you, by watching my team under acheive big time. If you don’t like what I write…you deal with it! I have been too nice on here to you…

  13. J Pat I wasn’t trying to attack you, I enjoy reading your posts as well. I was just trying to get across what Clarion said. Lynch obviously believes in coaching with a calm, steady hand. I think he feels if he tries to change it up now then he will lose this team. I think they believe in him because he does keep saying the same things, he does keep preaching the same message. When you are in the middle of a rebuilding project, I think that’s the type of coach you need. Obviously dealing with the media and fans is not Lynch’s strong suit. I believe he cares more about what his coaches and players think versus what the rest of us think. He’s definately the anti-Hep. Where Hep was very charasmatic and endeared himself to the fans, it seems Lynch has all the personality of a tree stump. But I did watch him very closely this last game, and he was more animated than I have ever seen him on the sidelines. He was all over the officials all game long. So believe me, under the whole “Cool Hand Luke” routine, there is a fiery competitor who desperately wants to win.

  14. JPat,
    As always I appreciate reading your stuff. 3 more games, and then we’ll have another complete BL season to judge….but it is frustrating….what is obvious to some is not obvious to all.

    I think-
    IU was better prepared and performed better against Iowa than I expected based on what I have seen during games this year.

    Iowa underestimated the Hoosiers, and did not appear well-prepared to play. I was not impressed with them. How did they crush MSU the week before?

    I admit that during the 2nd half I was feeling a bit of angst how the game would eventually be lost. When the last pass was in the air, it appeared gloriously that they had finally won–nice call, well blocked, good throw, nice route–just a drop. At our end of the field we were high-fiving, we thought we had won. I feel for those Hoosier boys.

    I hope Tandon Doss is ok. An awful lot is asked of that kid.

    3 rough trips lie ahead. I’ll keep watching.

    ““If I had the answer to that, we’d fix it,” Lynch said.” That’s what we all want. Somebody who has an answer. All this constant losing is so discouraging, and excuses do not help.

  15. Matts, I did not feel attacked, if I came off like that I am sorry. When I listen to him, I feel absolutely NO sense of urgency and that is just not practical…at this point. In my opinion he is cheating me as an alumni and fan in that way. Just my take. Jane Hep stood in front of my seats after she and her family were introduced…she was there for a quarter of football. I looked at her, her daughter and the little kids and then the team and then I started to get really emotional. I looked at my wife and she was there as well. I know deep down that this team would have won last Saturday with Hep, I know in my heart that IU would have done better this last 3 seasons under Hep, they would have found ways to win these close ones. It is really sad!!!

    KevinK, thanks buddy! It is hard for me I guess that it is not obvious to all. I had that discussion with some people at the tailgate Saturday. Not sure whether you played the game, coached, or have always admired the game of football but as a group we decided that many of the few fans that say Lynch is a good guy and needs more time have not really observed and taken in all of the little things that have gone on with the team…on the field! We also came to the conclusion that many of those fans are also basketball fans for years that know so much about bball and not football but think they do anyway. I am rambling, gotta go get some work done. Oh, I agree Iowa took IU very lightly and I will keep watching as well!!! Your last paragraph is oh so true…

  16. J Pat,

    What my line says is you can puff your chest out on here as much as you like and I have no problem with it. But you won’t change a thing about Coach Lynch’s demeanor during press conferences. Deal with it.

    My being quiet on here until these last few days has to do with being on the road for 85% of the last 41/2 weeks and very little else. Do you grasp the relevance?

  17. I disagree. I thought the Hoosiers played better against Iowa this past weekend than any other B10 game in recent memory. I would remind you that Iowa has talent and depth that we can’t even fathom plus a veteran (and might I add, very highly compensated)coaching staff. By rights, we should have been blown out by 40 points or more. It is a credit to BL, staff and players that we almost won!

    Look people, if you think getting another coach is going to magically produce a Rose Bowl trip, think again. While I agree that our coaching staff is not at the same level as our B10 competition, the dominant issue remains talent and depth, not coaching. In those two areas, under BL, we have made some pretty significant strides. Three years ago (Insight Bowl nothwithstanding), we had only a handful of players who could compete at the D1 level. We now have a lot more. No, we don’t have enough, granted and yes, those we do have could conceivably be conditioned and coached a little more effectively, but we are making progress.

    Rebuilding a football program that has never had a winning tradition, significant institutional or fan support is a long, hard and risky road not made any easier by shaking up the leadership at the drop of a hat. Let BL serve out his contract and then evaluate the condition of the program and make the appropriate decision.

  18. Clarion, I apologize that I have come at you hard on the topic of Lynch a few times, you have done the same but I am more to blame. I just cannot stand it any longer, the losing. It hurts me to the core! I am tired of walking back to my car feeling down in the dumps and yes I do blame the coaching staff. I don’t understand how you still defend and support Lynch to today, I just cannot relate to it. I guess I care more than you and that is not a slap in your face, I just feel I do. I always try to keep it respectful on here and feel I have not done that with you as of late and am sorry. From what I read you wrote on VO and your past basketball postings, at least we agree on bball.

    iufan, I am not looking for a Rose Bowl, I am looking for consistent 6-7-8 win seasons, that is all. Is that too much to ask for???

  19. Clarion, I am not a chest puffing guy…I work with kids for a living for goodness sake. I am a soft spoken guy but do use this as a place to blow off steam.

  20. iufan23,

    At the drop of the hat?

    3 more games, we will have 4 full seasons to evaluate Lynch at the helm. 4 seasons isn’t the drop of a hat.

    If he loses out like many (including myself) feel he will, that will leave this team 4-8, 0-8 in the Big Ten. That will leave him 5-27 in the Big Ten in his 4 years at the controls, 2-22 in the past 3 years. That is not acceptable and doesn’t warrant giving more time.

    We’ve covered this before as well. Lynch has 1 year left on the contract, if you keep him past this season, an extension must be given or his ability to recruit is shot!

  21. J Pat, Yes. 6-7-8 wins is a little beyond our reach at this time. I was hoping for 5 wins this year. I am dissapointed because I don’t think that will happen. I understand your frustration, but you cannot expect even a .500 season from a program that has been so neglected by so many for so long.

    By the way, in the next few years, you’re going to see the same frustration from our BB program! I think TC is a great coach, but rebuilding this program is also going to take a long time!

  22. Remember J Pat, HC has no reference of what IU football is beyond what he reads and can watch on the BTN, ESPN or hears from others.

    He doesn’t see the behind the scene stuff, like the players yelling at the coaches last year. He doesn’t go to practice and sees who out works who.

    I don’t discount him as a fan, cause it is obvious he loves IU sports, and he is the kind of fan that will support the players and staff till the bitter end and remain positive the entire time. No fault in that, but it just isn’t in you, or myself to keep backing someone who isn’t and hasn’t got it done and at this point won’t get it done.

  23. Mike P.,
    I hadn’t heard of the players yelling at the coaches, could you elaborate?

    J Pat,
    Believe me, I feel your frustration. I have season tickets and have travelled to a few road games, and have had the same long, slow walk back to the car that you have. It is heartbreaking, it is gut-wrentching….but it is better than the constant blow outs we have suffered in the past. We’ve only been out of 2 games this year, how often have we been able to say that in the past? I remember one year we gave up 50 points in back to back road games at Michigan and Ohio St. This team is at least competitve, and I feel overachieving at times. We are so close though, and I’d just hate to see a new coach come in and us have to start all over again.

    I’m with you on the 6-7-8 wins a year expectations, I think that’s a reasonable goal for our team. I believe that we are VERY close to that goal, and there’s still an outside shot at it this year. It may not be realistic, but it is still possible. Keep the faith brother.

  24. Mattsi4,

    This was last season and J Pat can confirm this. During a couple games defensive players (won’t name names) came off the field and would throw their helmets on the sidelines.

    On more than one occasion this got the coaches in their face (as it should) but the players responded by yelling back and verbally arguing with their coaches on the sideline.

    Next defensive series, said players were right back on the field in their spot.

    I know things happen in frustration. When that frustration blows up that large, kids need to sit down, even if it is just for one series.

  25. Matts, Mike P is right on. I was sitting 2nd row within 25 feet or so and watched it. It was nasty and I have never seen that happen on TV with any team at the college level. There was a lack of respect shown to Palcic(sp) on more than one occasion.

  26. JP,

    I am sure you do care, for I read it in your posts. Maybe you do care more than I. But I don’t think either one of us would want to live on the difference. As an IU supporter touching 7 decades, I am well vested in my long held reverence for the institution whether it is displaying rainbows or warts. Hell I’ve got shoes older than most on here. But to raise hell about a man still employed and postulating it from such a none position to stimulate from is a lark. It would be akin to me taking space in the local want adds demanding cash to neutralize the over-exposure of my accounts receivable. Yes I get after MD, Cam, Gerry Didnotknow, Sanctions and even Hep, RMK and Mal on occaission. But they are gone. While they were here I supported them all, although MD and Didnotknow made me bite my tongue many times. Look I think the reason you and others care in your way and I and some others care in my way is because we have seen a great and positive shift by the present AD and most recent ex-AD. They have put an emphasis on FB at IU like never before and placed an illuminated magnifying glass above it. The organization put in place inside the program by Coach Lynch and AD Glass are the same processes and methods initiated by professional managers. The program is on solid footing. The teams W/L on the field is disappointing. (Actually the program is in a more positive position than IU BB was 33 mo. ago, TT FB or Ks. FB have recently and Tenn. BB is now facing.) So it now sets up like many have said on here, keep BL for his last year and endure the potential recruiting loses(particularly in-state)or turn it over to a new staff who will not gain recruiting footing till their third recruiting year. Then we are on that 3-5 year rebuild schedule again. I personally like what the Illini have done. Shake up the staff by hiring some high caliber talent and give BL a one yr. extension. If things are not more positive over next season make the big change. Maybe one of those new assistant talents has risen to the top and could be the man. Almost every HC outside the top 20-25 and almost every assistant in the top 20-25 would look at IU. Do not let anyone kid you there will be enough money to sign the selected talent that comes out of that pool of candidates.

  27. Mike P,

    Mike the first two paragraphs of your most recent post are in error and I would suppose they were just an impulsive guess. No apology is necessary.

  28. Wow, I hadn’t seen or heard of any of that before. Very disturbing. Have either of you seen anything like that this year?

  29. Mattsi4,

    I haven’t seen the fighting like before. I have seen players walk away from coaches, and the coaches spin them around. I haven’t seen a helmet thrown this year.

  30. Clarion, good post. The only thing I will swear by is that if you get the right guy…you might not lose any recruiting and in fact could gain, again…if it is the right guy!

  31. Mike, you must have missed me…I asked you on here a while back. We are in scetion 11 now in the cusp of the new endzone. I could not take the other teams fans any longer…I miss you being there. Really, look into section 11, we got first row and look into the endzone so not on the 10 yd line any longer, only bad part.

  32. forgot to add…being in the new endzone, looking at it during the games, watching the kids run out, fireworks, bathrooms, concessions…it has a really neat and new feel to it!!!

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