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Getting to know Indiana: A new era of Hoosiers football

The Hoosiers haven’t beat Michigan since the 80’s

Indiana v Penn State Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

The Indiana Hoosiers are 3-2 on the season, with losses to Ohio State and Penn State. First year head coach Tom Allen has the Hoosiers competing at a much higher level than we have seen in years prior. The born and bred Indiana coach displays a high level of intensity each week on the sideline that has his players believing they can win any given game. Michigan needs to take them seriously.

No statistics really jump out to excite when looking at their rankings, but the eye test jumps out a lot more. During the first half of their opener against the Buckeyes, it was a highly competitive game, the same can be said for their first half performance versus Penn State. The wheels did fall off in both games after halftime, but the Hoosiers showed they do enough things right to compete for longated periods of a game.

Quarterback Peyton Ramsey should be the starter against Michigan. Indiana has used two quarterbacks this season, but Ramsey has been far superior, with both his legs and arm. On the year, Ramsey has rushed for 171 yards, while passing for 637 with 6 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. The fact Michigan faced a scrambling quarterback in Brian Lewerke last week may bode well for them containing Ramsey’s running prowess.

Indiana has two running backs averaging over five yards per carry, Cole Gest (6.1) and Morgan Ellison (5.2), both good averages that will test the Michigan run defense.

The Hoosiers like to spread it around to various receiving options, with five players having over 100 yards receiving on the season. Receivers Simmie Cobbs Jr., Luke Timian, and tight end Ian Thomas all find different ways to get open and can beat a secondary deep. All three are good route runners.

On the defensive side of the ball, the Hoosiers are a middle of the pack bunch, but Michigan has struggled against less than stellar defenses to this point in the season. There are pros and cons to how Michigan will fare against this unit, one that can get after the quarterback, but has also forced just one interception this season.

The biggest statistic in Michigan’s favor is the amount of games it has won against Indiana in a row. The Hoosiers have not beaten Michigan since 1988, they have a 21 game losing streak against the Wolverines.

Notable Rankings

  • 63rd in passing offense
  • 95th in rushing offense
  • 44th in third down conversion percentage
  • 34th in passing defense
  • 54th in rushing defense
  • 52nd in offensive efficiency
  • 22nd in defensive efficiency
  • 31st in sacks (14)
  • 122nd in interceptions (1)