A second look at Indiana’s Wildcat attempts at Michigan #iufb

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — They added some wrinkles and tried something new.

But the Hoosiers didn’t find much success running out of the Wildcat formation in Saturday’s 34-10 loss at Michigan.

Indiana attempted seven plays using the Wildcat, finishing with 18 net rushing yards out of the formation. IU did not attempt a pass on any of the seven Wildcat snaps.

The Hoosiers found positive yardage on three plays:

— On the first play of Nate Boudreau’s lone series, Tevin Coleman took a direct snap through the middle for 17 yards.
— With Indiana at the Michigan 9 just before halftime, Coleman took a direct snap and flipped the ball to Zander Diamont, who ran forward for only one yard.
— In the third quarter, with Diamont positioned behind him in the backfield, D’Angelo Roberts took a direct snap and ran for four yards.

Indiana also put J-Shun Harris in motion on three occasions, but failed to gain any yards. With Roberts taking the snap and Diamont stationed out wide, Harris lost a yard on jet sweep. Harris was once again in motion on the following play, but Roberts took the snap and handled it for a loss of two yards. IU tried the same play late in the third quarter, when Roberts lost a yard on a 3rd-and-7 call.

The Hoosiers’ first play out of the Wildcat was a direct snap that Coleman fumbled and Collin Rahrig recovered.

“It’s not the answer,” Wilson said. “We felt with where we were with the passing game, we needed to find some way to be more creative with the running game. That’s why we did it. It’s not a new offense. There was not one new play. It’s just a different formation. Instead of handing it to (Coleman or Roberts), its a direct snap. There might be the illusion of motion and stuff, or giving it to the motion guy, but we’ve done that. It’s just a new wrinkle.”

But it’s a limited wrinkle until Indiana proves it has some sort of pass option to pair with it. Coleman said IU has only recently started implementing the Wildcat in practice over the last couple weeks.

And he’s not keen on the idea of throwing the ball, should it get to that point.

“I’ve never thrown the ball, so I’m not looking forward to throwing it,” Coleman said. “I’ve tried in practice, but it didn’t go well.”