2017 Prespring Rankings: No. 54 Indiana Hoosiers
The 2017 prespring college football rankings, taking the first look at the Indiana Hoosiers
No. 54: Indiana Hoosiers
Indiana Hoosiers Prespring Status
The Hoosiers should’ve been ready to rock and roll going into this year, with a veteran team coming back and years of decent recruiting ready for Kevin Wilson to coach. But Wilson’s gone, and now it’s up to Tom Allen to try keeping things going after a decent year that finished with a thud, losing three of the last four games including the bowl battle with Utah. No one’s expecting miracles – like a run at the Big Ten title – but there’s no excuse to not go bowling again.
The offense has just enough losses to be annoying. The offense is without RB Devine Redding who took off early for the NFL. Also gone to the next level is dominant run-blocking guard Dan Feeney, while the passing game loses just enough good receivers to be a problem. The defense gets back nine starters, but they’re the good ones. LB Marcus Oliver left early for the NFL, and Ralphael Green is done off the nose.
Indiana Hoosiers Biggest Issue
The receiving corps needs a little help, and Redding is a big hole to fill. Mitchell Paige led the team with 58 catches, and Ricky Jones was second with 53 grabs. Both of them are gone now, while Redding is done after running for 1,122 yards and seven scores. He might not have been as dynamic as Jordan Howard or Tevin Coleman over the last few years, but he pounded away.
Indiana Hoosiers Biggest Positive
This is the year the defense has been building for. Just a rumor for years, the IU D started to get better over the last few seasons, and this year the experience is in place to come up with a fantastic campaign if everything goes according to plan. Oliver is gone after making 96 tackles, but leading-tackler Tegray Scales is back, and the good-hitting secondary returns intact. In all, eight of the top nine tacklers are back, and 14 of the top 16 return.
Really, Why Are The Indiana Hoosiers Ranked Here?
Just how good is Allen? He and the coaching staff patched the leak, with the team playing well in the near-miss loss to Utah in the bowl, and now the Hoosiers return QB Richard Lagow, a slew of good young receivers, and a veteran defense. This is a good enough team to come up with a slew of upsets and get to a halfway decent bowl, as long as Wilson isn’t missed.