Indiana football picked to finish fifth in Big Ten East

A preseason media poll has Indiana football finishing fifth in the Big Ten East.

In the cleveland.com poll, the Hoosiers trailed the East’s four perennial powerhouses: Michigan (20 first-place votes), Ohio State (14), Michigan State, and Penn State.

Maryland and Rutgers rounded out the division.

Of the poll’s 34 voters, 17 picked Michigan as the conference’s overall favorite. Ohio State received 14 votes, Nebraska got two, and one voter picked Northwestern.

Along with their East Division matchups, the Hoosiers will match up with the poll’s top team in the west, Nebraska, on Oct. 26 in Lincoln. The Huskers received 14 first-place votes, tying with Iowa for the most in the division. Wisconsin got four, while Northwestern logged one.

The poll also asked voters to predict the Big Ten championship matchup and winner. Eight voters favored Michigan over Nebraska, while another eight had Michigan beating Iowa.

For the entire poll and story from cleveland.com, click here.

26 comments

  1. Until the Big Ten East/West divisions are realigned or an eight game Big Ten League schedule, I U is facing at best a 6-6 season, or 5-7. Coach Allen is in a tough spot being in the eastern division, Purdue fans should be thankful that West Lafayette is west of Bloomington to be in the West Division of the Big Ten.

    1. With all due respect, there is no reason why IU cannot beat either MSU or PSU 1 out of every 3 years. They are not that good! It will all depend upon the offense scoring 40+ in the game. Our defense will play. But why does the B1G not do “seeding” on the non-division match-ups. It is easy and totally determined at the end of the season: #1 vs 1, 2, 3; #2 vs 1, 3, 4; etc. Great matchups, exciting TV, good for competition!

    2. Can we stop with the whining about IU being in the tougher division? News flash, teams in the west are becoming more competitive. Teams like Northwestern, Minnesota, and Nebraska are challenging the two most consistent winners, Wisconsin and Iowa.

      Putting IU in the west in 2019 would likely result in the same 2-4 record against divisional foes that they achieved in the east division in 2018. Illinois is the west divisions Rutgers, and Minnesota is their Maryland. Making the argument that IU would see a significant improvement if they were in the west is without merit. IU would likely finish in fifth place or worse (depending on who wins the IU/Minnesota game) in the west.

      Instead of arguing that IU should play in a perceived weaker division how about making the statement that IU needs to raise the bar on performance and coaching so that they will be competitive against everyone in the conference regardless of division? Things are cyclical and currently the east division of the Big Ten Conference is strong. If Day doesn’t prove himself to be any better than Harbaugh, Franklin, or Dantonio, and if Frost, and Fleck prove to be as good or better than Chryst, Ferentz, or Fitzgerald the west division will be just as difficult.

      I’m going to let Allen prove himself. He will either sink or swim on his abilities as a head coach. If he can beat one or more of OSU, UM, MSU, and PSU starting this year are people still going to make the argument that IU plays in the tougher division, or are they going to acknowledge that IU has upped its game iand is now able to compete with the best?

      1. Amen, SOSD. Only losers whine about how tough the schedule is. If the players are getting off the bus in East Lansing and thinking “If only we were getting off the bus in Iowa City, then that is one doomed team.

  2. I think this season will boil down to a tale of two quarterbacks, pun intended. If Penix and Tuttle live up to their billing, IUFB has a chance to surprise some people. If the QB play is no better than the last two seasons, then it will be another rerun and IU will be lucky to win 5.

  3. How about this new realignment: Northern Division: Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan , Michigan State, Iowa, Northwestern, Rutgers Southern Division: Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, Indiana, Maryland, Illinois, Nebraska

    1. I like where you’re going but IDK if the B1G brass want to see OSU and Mich possibly playing each other in back to back weeks. If it happened and they split, then chances of a B1G playoff team are slimmer.

  4. As I have pointed out numerous times before, for years, O-line recruiting is key. Should have paid Frey when he was here. Absolutely cannot allow kids like Josh Fryer, Beech Grove to be lost to OSU’s coach Studawa. Nothing against Hiller, but he just isn’t a very effective recruiter at this level.
    Studawa’s published base is comparable to Hiller’s right now!!! Ok haters,…show your disdain for my comment and reality. Upgrade that coaching slot!

    1. Brad,
      As much as I hate to see what are basically lateral transfers of assistant coaches to other schools due to IUFB’s miserly pay, the jury is still out on both Frey and Hiller. Frey has bounced around through 3 nationally known programs (UM; FSU; FL) since leaving IU and it is yet to be determined if he will do well at Florida. As for Hiller, let’s see what happens this year. This OL may surprise some folks, especially if it has a QB making their job easier. Hard to block a defense able to crowd the line without fear of a pass behind them.

      1. thinkaboutit, I agree with you, fans don’t look at how much the OL improved the second
        half of the season. Hiller has brought in very good recruits and they will have a chance to be in the rotation. The S&C staff is doing a great job and we will see if the OL is better with the increase size and strength. Brad doesn’t see how bad Frey did in other systems and he wouldn’t have been good in this offensive system. Frey’s OL men often missed blocks but because the backs were running wide they couldn’t get to them very often.

        Who our QB will be we don’t know but I hope the more talented QB wins.

  5. I agree the jury is still out on Hiller. As for IU’s ability to keep Frey, that was simply not possible. Michigan paid him more than $700,000 per year and offered an opportunity to coach with the elite. And while you can argue that Frey was underpaid while at IU, there was just no way IU could afford to pay a position coach that kind of money. We couldn’t afford to pay a position coach that amount now.

    IU should do everything possible to attract and keep the best assistant football coaches. But let’s face it, there are a few schools with the money to poach any of our assistant coaches, and IU is financially helpless to prevent it. OSU and Michigan generate more revenue from one home football game than IU does in all its home games combined.

  6. Can we stop with the whining about IU being in the tougher division? News flash, teams in the west are becoming more competitive. Teams like Northwestern, Minnesota, and Nebraska are challenging the two most consistent winners, Wisconsin and Iowa.

    Putting IU in the west in 2019 would likely result in the same 2-4 record against divisional foes that they achieved in the east division in 2018. Illinois is the west divisions Rutgers, and Minnesota is their Maryland. Making the argument that IU would see a significant improvement if they were in the west is without merit. IU would likely finish in fifth place or worse (depending on who wins the IU/Minnesota game) in the west.

    Instead of arguing that IU should play in a perceived weaker division how about making the statement that IU needs to raise the bar on performance and coaching so that they will be competitive against everyone in the conference regardless of division? Things are cyclical and currently the east division of the Big Ten Conference is strong. If Day doesn’t prove himself to be any better than Harbaugh, Franklin, or Dantonio, and if Frost, and Fleck prove to be as good or better than Chryst, Ferentz, or Fitzgerald the west division will be just as difficult.

    I’m going to let Allen prove himself. He will either sink or swim on his abilities as a head coach. If he can beat one or more of OSU, UM, MSU, and PSU starting this year are people still going to make the argument that IU plays in the tougher division, or are they going to acknowledge that IU has upped its game iand is now able to compete with the best?

    1. I disagree….I still find the East far more competitive. The West provides far easier chances at “breakthrough” possibilities. Sure, there are stronger teams than Indiana in the West, but their margin of error is slimmer. An upset possibility is much closer with ‘West’ competition.

      Nebraska Football is very similar to Hoosier Basketball…Not very relevant for a very long time. Still trying to recapture that old mojo. Watching tradition grow smaller and smaller in the rearview mirror. Time will tell if they can get some of that tall corn back.

      The premier teams of the East was once called a “Murderer’s Row” here(Was it Husky Tom who first used that clever descriptor?). I’ll take Northwestern, Wisconsin and Iowa …over Michigan, OSU, Penn State and MSU any old Saturday.

      We make a lot of excuses for losses at Indiana….but BigTen division alignment is of criminal imbalance. The West is no “Murderer’s Row”…It’s more of a “Misdemeanors Row.”

      1. And if you want to even get more specific, “breakthrough” shouldn’t mean one upset over a Murderer’s Row team every 5 to 25 years. True breakthrough means consistent competitiveness….and being consistently at the cusp of winning against the traditional strength of the conference.

        I still believe that consistency in “breakthrough” opportunities season after season is a far less tall mountain to climb in the “Misdemeanors Row” of the West. Playing in the East is time in Sing Sing. Playing the West is time at a Sing-along.

      2. Nebraska is already the favorite in the West. A lot of people are pegging them for a 10 win season. I’m leaning more towards 8 with my prediction for them but the Huskers are on their way back to being relevant either way.

        If Brohm hangs around at Purdonkey much longer, they will likely be a B1G title contender very soon (Hoping Lynn Swan hires him away this off-season) as well.

        1. We’ll see….If Nebraska had to face the ‘East,’ I’d imagine expectations would be tempered. They are entering their football version of Tom Crean at IU hoops….Lots of hype. Lots of “Cornhusker Rising”…and “We’re Back!” We’ve seen those rerun movies at IU.
          Nebraska should simply ‘put up or shut up’ and not pay much attention to prognosticators and hype. I hope they are stronger…It’s about time Purdon’t faces something nearing an equivalent to what Indiana faces many times every season. When we get to an Oaken Bucket game we’ve run through ‘Murderer’s Row’ alley of hit men…Purdue gets to an Oaken Bucket game with barely encountering an old lady jaywalker.

  7. IU has been very competitive in the B1G East, they just need to start winning some of the close games they have played. I think the B1G is getting to be a brutal conference for all teams with the coaches in the league. Rutgers is the outlier and Lovie Smith hasn’t proven his mettle yet. IU is in a tough spot but coach Allen has made changes each year because he wants IU to win championships not just get close.

    IU does need to improve and not move to from the East. We will see this year the beginning of the improvement if it is coming. IU has a good mixture of older players and more talented players in the younger classes. That combination could be a winning team and it would nice to see IU with a winning record.

    1. You haven’t heard whining until you hear a fan base of a top tier BigTen East team if they ever do lose a game to IU. That’s the reality we play. It’s not a reality Purdue faces. They can’t damage a reputation of a winner the way Indiana Football can. No premier team can take us lightly….The wins must be sound and without question…The starters must remain in the game to make any outside observations in disparities between the programs beyond clear. We have been so historically terrible that we can’t ever catch a team on its heels because the embarrassment of the upset will mar them for life.

      1. Thus…OSU brings more ‘A game’ against IU than they likely do against Michigan, Wisconsin, Penn State, etc. It’s the ‘bad losses’ that keep you out of national championship contention/consideration. There is no bigger bad in ‘bad loss’ than losing to the Bad Boys of Bloomington.
        If we defeat the Buckeyes while Wilson is their OC, he would be without a job within a week. A head would have to roll. A guillotine walk would be the must.
        Even the more casual college football fan of these parts would likely love nothing more than Hoosier Football to make a shocking rise from our eternal rut ….SEC lovers like thinkaboutit would be overjoyed as well…just to witness the head-rolling parties around the conference all worth the price of admission.

        1. Except TOSU’s bad loss to Purdue last year was enough to keep them, a one loss team, out of the College Football Playoff.

  8. Bloggers have reached into the Archives of 1950’s-60’s and thereafter comments. The story is real but the names have changed to protect the innocent (current players) and hope of IU football future (immediate future 2019 season).

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