Sundae Scoop: Riding the IU football rollercoaster

The night started with anticipation (cue the Rocky Horror Picture Show fans now that it’s almost October) and ended in frustration for Hoosiers both playing and watching Saturday against Missouri.

It’s the story of the 2013 season through four games, and there’s no reason to expect anything different over the course of the next eight games. So hang on tight and try to enjoy the roller coaster ride if you can. If you can’t, go ahead and get off until next year.

It’s a testament both to IU’s talent and lack thereof that the Hoosiers are capable of such volatility. The good new is there’s enough talent in Bloomington to hit the heights — those times when the offense is clicking and the defense is at least passable, even forcing turnovers. The bad news is there’s not enough talent yet to avoid the dropoff when other teams start clicking — and by talent I primarily mean speed and athleticism. The Hoosiers are better in that capacity than they were three years ago when Kevin Wilson arrived, but still not good enough to play at a high level game in and game out.

On Saturdays when all goes well, this Indiana team is still capable of some wins, including at least one or two over someone you might not expect. But when things go south, IU is also capable of some more losses, also potentially against a foe you might not expect.

It just comes with the territory when you’re riding a roller coaster.

11 comments

  1. More talent than 3 years ago? You mean Kofi, Heban, Bolser, and Roberson (who committed before Wilson got there? All Lynch recruits and playing major roles this year.

    Our QB certainly isn’t better then Chap. Our WRs are good, but so were they then with Doss. I’ll give you our CBs are better. LBs…. maybe. But our DL and DEs are about the same, from what I can see.

    From what I’ve seen, overall, a wash in ‘talent’. But if talent is improved, not enough to make such a blanket statement.

  2. Boy, they are hard to watch when they aren’t clicking on all cylinders. Was it just me, or did it seem like the receivers were incredibly lazy last night? I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I saw a receiver or tight end short arm a catch in fear of getting hit. I’ll give it to them that some of the balls weren’t “between the numbers” but I’ve seen them make a lot tougher plays before. They just seemed like they didn’t want to play last night.

    As usual, the D didn’t get off the bus. It was a game where the score doesn’t quite show just how one-sided the game was. Maybe one day in the future we will have a team that can play with some consistency from week to week….but for now, we’re stuck guessing which team will show up on Saturday, the team that looks as though they’ve never touched a football before, or the team that can play with anybody.

  3. Indiana still awful…..no talent no want to no nothing…same old stuff from the Hossiers. Hard to believe that a University of this size and stature has remained so horrible for so long.
    A realistic view of the remaining games may include 1 or 2 opportunities for a victory. Looks like a 4-8 season….improvement?

  4. JW – I can’t speak on behalf of the past AD’s, but Glass is doing a great job and hired the right man for the job. As you know, this head coaching job is no small task for anybody, but if someone can do it, it’s Coach Wilson and I firmly believe that. It’s just going to take a couple of more years of recruiting classes like he’s been bringing in. I do agree with your prediction of 4-8. 5-7 if they can manage to steal one. I don’t know if you can call it improvement, though. The defense took a major step back last night after looking somewhat decent the week before. Improvement, for me anyway, would be playing consistently on both sides of the ball each and every week. If they can do that the rest of the season, but still come up with a 4-8 or 5-7 record, I would say that’s improvement.

  5. 5 wins was where Cam Cameron peaked with Randall El and friends…Cameron as IU coaches have said many times there is a lot of youth on team and they are going to get better and better. No specifics on when. 3 or 4 4 star recruits needed (they are the bigger, faster, quicker better players) mixed in with 3 star recruits….

  6. If you look at the good SEC teams, they are built on killer offensive and defensive lines. This is our weakness now. I can definitely see the improved athleticism in the linebackers and secondary but we can’t control the line of scrimmage on either side and the shakey play calling ain’t helpin’.

    I can take the losing since I’ve been an IU football fan for years but what bothers me is the poor coaching. It’s the reason I gave up my season tix when they gave Lynch the job and CKW’s inexperience is pushing me to the breaking point as well.

  7. Mr. Price’s article is spot on. This will be a roller coaster season with some highs and unfortunately some lows. While the talent level is definitely up, it is not yet at the level where IU can be expected to compete effectively and consistently with B1G programs let alone SEC teams. That is not to say that we can’t pull off an upset from time to time. We certainly can and will but we are still quite a long way from a program that week after week competes effectively. I remain hopeful that we can get 1-2 B1G wins this year.

  8. Except for Oliver, sometimes Cooper and occasionally a too heavy Simmons our backers are a 1/2 step slow. I think TJ needs to drop 4-5 pounds and also needs Mark Hill to redistribute some of his mass and inches for more quickness. We do miss Hoobler as he moves laterally pretty well. Mangieri and Shaw are starting to get it and can be close to the serviceable DE we need for rotation. Kenney will be there before long. But mainly the DL just needs to grow up, mature, gain experience and confidence. I did not think it would show much but up against quality competition like Mizzou we visibly miss our 3 injured OL men. I definitely liked most of what I saw of Tre Sat. and believe the 2 headed QB game plan as it keeps evolving is an advantage for IU. Damn Rutgers beat the Razorbacks and Maryland beat WV. I suppose that means there is no Bigfoot either? Welcome to the B1G.

  9. DC, Chap was very good, but as a true sophomore, he did not have the talent that Sudfeld has now. It will be interesting to see if Sudfeld continues to progress.

  10. While thinking about the Hoosiers vs Missouri, I started remembering the days when freshmen football players were not allowed to compete on the varsity and freshmen/sophomore teams would compete against each other and would have weekly ‘scrimmages’ against the varsity players (usually very few of the starters who had played that Saturday).

    No matter how good the recruiting had been; the freshman/soph team got its head, its pride and its arse handed to them. The experience was the same in other B1G teams. I can’t think of a sport where physical maturity and experience matters more than football where the body replaces fat with muscle and hardness, the mind compensates for physical differences with intelligence and ‘tricks’ that come from experience (like spinning your body around to make it seem the blocker is grabbing you, or grabbing a man;s shirt with the arm/hand away from the official, standing on an opponents foot).

    This is especially true in the trenches, where the game is won or lost. You can’t compensate for age and experience. I’m actually somewhat pleased that this IU team is somewhat competitive against experienced teams like Navy (think about the intelligence it takes to get into Annapolis) and a big Big12 team like Missou. Nearly half our playing time is coming from players who were high school seniors a year ago and about 2/3 from sophomore/frosh playing for the first time in their lives.

    Watching my 5-year old grandson deal with his bigger 3-year old brother broke me into a smile. The ‘younger’ (not smaller) one uses all his strength and turns a huffy, bluish red trying to turn the 5-year old over…the older one simply shifts his weight and uses the younger-ones weight against him and turns him over flying into the space between the bed and the floor. Then, the little one gets up, lips puckered and trying hard TO tear-up and says ‘granpa… tell him not to do THAT!’.

    Conclusion: ‘The devil is not the devil because he is a devil; …the devil is the devil because he is o-o-o-ld’

  11. HC… Rutgers and Maryland are not, by any means, ‘easy bites. Rutgers has always been a tough actor in the East Coast and the NYC area. Maryland the same, between DC and Baltimore and throw in Virginia and Eastern Pennsylvania. Plus, if they joined the B1C it is because they discovered the ‘value’ of their population and TV markets. Their investment will at least match ‘older’ conference members and probably bigger.

    IU will have to make a significant investment to just make and keep us competitive and our alumni/fan base will have to understand Noblesville and Bloomington are not ‘urban centers’.

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