Written By Sammy Jacobs (@Hoosier_Huddle)
It is never too early to start planning college football weekends for the fall in Bloomington and around the Big Ten. The Indiana Hoosiers have seven home games at Memorial Stadium in the 2015 season. Here at Hoosier Huddle we would like to give you a guide as to which game would be the best to travel to depending on what the fans want to see. So grab your calendar and a pen and let’s start circling dates!
Best Chance to See A Hoosier Victory: September 5th vs. Southern Illinois:
What’s better way to spend the Saturday of Labor Day weekend than to tailgate and head to The Rock to see the Hoosiers open up their 2015 campaign against the FCS level Salukis? The Salukis finished 2014 with a 6-6 (3-5) record and they lost at Purdue 35-13 on September 20th, while losing 41-26 to Indiana State later in the year. This is the traditional opening day cupcake for the Hoosiers and should provide a great opportunity for the fans to see an IU victory and enjoy the experience of Big Ten football in Bloomington at the end of the summer when the weather is ideal.
Best Game For Fans That Love Offense: September 19th vs. Western Kentucky:
The Hilltoppers ranked sixth in the nation in points scored averaging 44.4 per game while their defense is one of the worst in the country in points given up surrendering nearly 40 points a contest, so expect a lot of fireworks. They also return their quarterback, Brandon Doughty (4,830 yards 49 TDs in 2014), for a sixth season of eligibility. This game promises to keep fans on the edge of their seats as two prolific offenses clash. It is also a dark horse as being one of the most exciting football games of the season for IU.
Best Chance To See The Hoosiers Pull off an Upset: November 14th vs. Michigan:
While nobody can predict what may happen during the season and where these teams may be on November 14th, but this is the Hoosiers best chance at pulling off an upset over the Wolverines. Indiana has beaten Michigan once since 1967. Let that sink in for a minute. Michigan is undergoing a rebuilding project and even though Jim Harbaugh is finally in Ann Arbor to be head coach improvements may take a year to start showing. Indiana has been close in the last five years to finally knocking off Michigan. If the team stays healthy this could be the year it happens.
Best Game to Experience a Big Time Atmosphere at The Rock: October 3rd vs. Ohio State:
That’s right the champs are coming to Bloomington in 2015 and the Hoosiers have a chance to be 4-0 when the Buckeyes come knocking to open Big Ten play. Usually Ohio State fans gobble up the tickets to this game and turn the Capital of Hoosier Nation into Columbus West. Challenge to Hoosier Nation: DON’T LET THIS HAPPEN! This should be a sell out no matter which fans are filling the seats. Also, the game is likely to be a primetime game on either the Big Ten Network or ESPN. Since head coach Kevin Wilson has come to Bloomington the Hoosiers have played the Buckeyes close and have put a scare into Urban Meyer’s squad a couple of times. If you want to see a great atmosphere book your hotels now and get ready to tailgate all day before heading into a raucous Memorial Stadium.
Best Chance to See the Hoosiers On the Road November 28th at Purdue:
The Hoosiers play five road games in 2015 and make stops all over the east coast and in the Midwest. So if you live in the D.C. area the game at Maryland on November 21st would make a great road trip to a terrific college town, and if you live in and around North Carolina I would suggest trekking it to Wake Forest in Winston-Salem to see IU take on an ACC foe, but the easiest game for IU fans in Indiana to see on the road is the Old Oaken Game in West Lafayette. Yes, it is during Thanksgiving and people may not want to travel all over the state twice in a week, but it would be the cheapest game on the road to travel to, plus the Hoosiers should be playing for something more than just a third straight Bucket victory that day.
So there you have it Hoosier fans. Plan accordingly and have fun. There is nothing more fun than college football Saturday’s in the Big Ten.