Written By Sammy Jacobs (@Hoosier_Huddle)
There will be a mixture of new and old faces when the Indiana Hoosier offense takes the field against the Indiana State Sycamores on Saturday afternoon. Here are five players that fans should keep an eye out for during this game and throughout the season.
1. Nate Sudfeld, QB- Sudfeld is now the number one guy under center for head coach Kevin Wilson’s offense. As a true sophomore, the California kid put up impressive stats while only starting four games in 2013. Sudfeld threw for 2,523 yards and 21 touchdowns while completing 60.2 percent of his passes. The expectations are sky high for Sudfeld in the high-powered offense. His numbers should place him among the best in the conference and more importantly put the Hoosiers in a position to have a winning season.
2. Shane Wynn, WR- Now that Kofi Hughes, Cody Latimer, and Duwyce Wilson are no longer making plays for the Hoosiers it is time for the little guy Shane Wynn to step up and fill their big shoes. Wynn is a home run hitter who has scored via the pass, run, punt return, and kick return in his career. The dynamo from Ohio led the team in touchdown receptions in 2013 with 11 and should continue to be a playmaker even with his move to outside receiver. While there is still an abundance of talent in the receiving corps, including Isaiah Roundtree, Nick Stoner, and Ricky Jones, Wynn is the headliner. He has garnered recognition from both the Bilitkinoff and Hornung Awards.
3. Tevin Coleman, RB- The breakout year for the sophomore tailback fell short of 1,000 yards only because an ankle injury forced him out of the final three games of 2013. Tevin Coleman is one of the best backs in the Big Ten. He led the nation in with eight rushes of at least 40 yards or more. Coleman also has a knack for finding the end zone as well, as he recorded a touchdown in each of the nine games he played in. Number six is now thrust into the full time starting role after the departure of Stephen Houston. Coaches have said all camp that Coleman is in the best shape of his career at IU and is ready to taken on a heavier rushing load. If he can continue his upward trend 2014 with be something special for Hoosier Nation to witness.
4. The Offensive Line- It is difficult to single out one player on a unit that needs five guys to play as one. The 2014 Hoosier offensive line is finally healthy and ready to prove themselves as one of the Big Ten’s best. Jason Spriggs, Colin Rahrig, Dan Feeney, Bernard Taylor, and Peyton Eckert will lead a deep and talented unit. Rahrig, a former walk-on, was named to the Remmington Award watch list for the nation’s best center. This unit is big and strong and finally resembles a Big Ten offensive line. If they can play up to their expectations this offense will really click and Fred Glass may need to invest in some more fireworks to shoot off at home games.
5. Simmie Cobbs, WR- In the spring we all thought Dominique Booth would make the list of players to watch in 2014. While Booth is very talented and will play major minutes for this team, Cobbs brings something to the table that no other IU receiver can. That is his size. T 6’4” Cobbs, a late flip from Purdue, is noticeably bigger than most of the receivers. He has shown the ability to go up and grab the ball as well as great hands. He can be a real difference maker for the Hoosiers.
Best of the Rest
While every one on offense cannot be listed here are a few other names Hoosier fans should be familiar with by the time the season kicks off.
1. Laray Smith, RB- Speed kills and Smith has a ton of it. Look for the Hoosiers to get him on the field in whatever way possible whether it is on special teams, at running back, or as a wide receiver.
2. J-Shun Harris, WR- The coaching staff has been gushing about this true freshman throughout camp. Harris, who reminds many of Shane Wynn, brings speed and fearlessness along with great hands to the position.