Written By Sammy Jacobs (@sammyj108)
Football season is almost here! The 2014 season unofficially kicked off today at Big Ten Media Days where coaches and players from each school talked to the media and previewed the upcoming season. The topics ranged from actual football questions to where Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini’s cat is staying (he was napping in the hotel room), but let’s get down to what we are all here to read about; coach Kevin Wilson’s comments about the 2014 season.
In typical Kevin Wilson fashion he opened with some humor cracking a joke that they “got the warm-up bands out of the way”. Wilson also mentioned that practice starts in exactly a week. He has been pleased with the staff’s recruiting efforts and believes that depth is much better across the board than it has been in previous seasons. I am not going to go through every little detail and word of coach Wilson’s press conference, but I will go through the highlights.
First, coach Wilson is supremely confident in his offensive line, as he should be since they are finally healthy and will be among the best, if not the best in the conference.
Wilson added “And what I like about our offensive line is that our starting right guard and starting right tackle from a year ago missed all 12 games. So we were able to accomplish decent offensive numbers with basically half the line out. We've got every lineman returning. And what's also exciting, everybody's returning, we've only got two seniors in that crowd. So a lot of veterans. A great sophomore and junior group of linemen. So the line's going to be pretty good.” The line play should let Tevin Coleman continue to develop and flourish in the offense. Coach Wilson also touched upon the notion that the Hoosiers will play multiple backs, so look for D’Angelo Roberts, Myles Graham, and Laray Smith to see some action in relief. There could be as many as eight backs competing for back up roles when camp starts.
Next, coach Wilson was asked about his confidence in the hiring of new defensive coordinator Brian Knorr. Wilson responded, “Brian's numbers coming out of Wake
Forest had been top 40 defense for a couple of years in a row. Of course I knew him and was very comfortable with him. But what I was looking for, again, wasn't an unproven guy, but someone I thought that had played solid, competitive defense, because I think if we could just be competitive and get a few stops, everybody -- I always kind of almost laugh, they say, you know, your offense versus your defense going fast, if we get a couple of stops and get the ball back, think how much better the offense could be.”
The third and fourth questions dealt with the quarterback situation and whether or not Tre Roberson gave a reason for leaving. Wilson did not directly answer why Roberson left the program over the summer, but thanked him for how he handled to competition. As far as the back up quarterback, that job going into camp is Nate Boudreau’s.
Finally, Wilson talked a little about the schedule changes in the future and how the philosophy of trying to get seven home games every year is key. “This will be my fourth year at Indiana and the third time we've had six home games. I think if you go through the last decade, count the number of Big Ten teams that have been 6-6. It's called a home field advantage. It's your locker room; it's their travel. You want to play at home. When you're a Big Ten player and you're branded as a power five BCS school, you need to target a 7-5 schedule. And our administration's been awesome. We just picked up a home and home in Cincinnati. We got Wake Forest I think coming in here next year starting in '15 and '16. So we've got some things in place moving that way, continuing to play some other teams within our region. But to me having seven home games was critical to having a winning program at IU.”
To read Kevin Wilson's full statement click here.