Why the Indiana Hoosiers scare me is simple.... Indiana Passing Offense vs Iowa's Pass Defense. A basic trap game scenario for the Hawks, who make it a custom of losing to either Indiana or Northwestern. Hopefully this trend will not continue since they have us in back to back weeks at home. But Northwestern is next week so lets focus on Indiana.
If Adam Robinson was health I would say the game plan would be very simple:
- control time of possession
- don't turn the ball over
- keep Ben Chappell and his gang of talented receivers off the field
With the news of Adam Robinson being 50/50, the nightmares of Stanzi's game last year, and the chilling tale of a past visit to Bloomington (2006 & James Hardy) all being prevalent in this years game... the phrase "trap game" could go from a possibility to an excuse by Sunday. (stats based on the first 8 games only OSU, MSU, and MINN have played 9 games)
Indiana Pass Offense: #1 in BIG TEN
- 219 Comp. (#1 in BT)
- 349 Attempts (#1 in BT)
- 2503 Yards (#1 in BT)
- 18 TDs (T- #3 w/ MN in BT)
- 9 INTs (T- #1 in BT w/ 4 other schools)
Breakdown - They lost Darius Willis their main RB, so they had to turn to Trea Burgess. Indiana was gonna throw the football a ton this year regardless because it is what they do, but it does go without saying that losing their most productive RB may have moved them even further from the run game. They are tied for the lead with the most INT's and with Sash and Greenwood I would say they will each have plenty of opportunities to make a big play on defense. The yards per completion was at 7.2 so that tells me they run a lot of the underneath routes, whether it be hooks, slants, posts or screens. Which concerns me because I don't have that much faith in our corners right now and they always play 7 yards off the ball. Plus having no true cover linebackers this year, could all be a major problem for Saturday. Tarp is by far our best cover linebacker and with his health issues it makes you wonder how good he can be on Saturday. Know it has been said he will play but i wonder if he is 100%.
vs. Iowa's Pass Defense: #5 in BIG TEN
- 166 Comp. (#5 in BT)
- 273 Attempts (#4 in BT)
- 1662 Yards (#7 in BT)
- 8 TDs (#10 in BT)
- 13 INTs (T- #2 in BT)
Breakdown - It's simple... teams haven't had any success running the ball against us for the most part, so they have gone to the air. Penn State, Michigan, and Michigan State our defensive line over powered their offensive line and caused havoc for the opposing QB. Penn State had the true freshman Rob Bolden who was rattled, Michigan wanted to spread the field and let Denard Robinson run on us, and Michigan State is most successful passing when they can utilize the play action which is set up by a solid running game. WIsconsin was able to over power and contain our defensive line to give Scott Tolzien time in the pocket and to make holes (somehow) large enough to fit John Clay through them but even then, this was a game the special teams lost for us not our defense.
- Ben Chappell is a great QB as far as a system QB goes. He has a quick release so it's hard to bring pressure which makes your coverage all the more important. Was in a boot earlier in the week but all signs point to him playing.
- Damario Belcher, Tandon Doss, Terrance Turner, and Duwyce Wilson are all talented receiving targets for Chappell to look to during the game. Belcher being the most talented... at 6'5 and 215lbs do I dare speak his name... James Hardy's clone? Doss and Turner aren't shrimp either at 6'3.
- TE Ted Bolser? Yep... the TE Ted Bolser. He has 5 TD grabs on the year and with out researching how... I would assume he is a redzone target.
- Iowa's LB's and CB's are a concern... No true cover linebackers other than Tarp who is still trying to come back from injury. Micah Hyde has been picked on all year and has given up the big play at times too.
- Adam Robinson's health.
- LB depth
Prediction - I think Iowa will win this game 34- 21. I think we will have a hard time getting to Chappell and they will slowly and methodically move the ball down the field with the short passing game. I think Coker and Rogers will be our RBs and Robinson will get the week off. I think they will pick on Hyde and our lack of LB depth. I think Sash and Greenwood will have great games and our defense will force 2 INTs.
What are your thoughts? Am I just crazy and have too much time on my hands right now?