4. College Football News Preview 2020: Indiana Hoosiers Defense 3 Things To Know
– The defense couldn’t handle the better offenses, and it struggled too often late in the year, but it was hardly awful. It allowed 352 yards and 32 points per game, was serviceable at getting into the backfield, and it didn’t have any one glaring issue other than not being able to pick off enough passes.
Three starters are expected back in the secondary after going through a youth movement at corner. 220-pound Marcelino Ball is really a linebacker playing a hybrid role, and Devon Matthews is a nice-looking 6-2, 202-pound hitter for one of the other safety gigs.
– Veteran Reakwon Jones is gone from the linebacking corps in the 4-2-5, but leading tackler Micah McFadden is back after making 61 stops. A pair of 227-pounders – junior Cam Jones and sophomore James Miller – are experienced enough to fill in rotate into the other spot.
– The D line needs to be better at getting to the quarterback, but there’s a nice blend of bulk and experience across the front four. 304-pound senior Jerome Johnson tied for the team lead with five sacks coming from his spot on the inside, while 311-pound junior Demarcus Elliott will once again serve as the anchor. Now it’s up to the ends – most likely junior James Head and senior Michael Ziemba – to be far more disruptive.