Below is the transcript for the audio of the interview. I apologize if some of the audio is not of great quality.
Hoosier Huddle: Welcome to Inside the Huddle with Hoosier Huddle. I am your host Sammy Jacobs. We are talking with Joe Belden, who is a commit to Indiana University for football in the class of 2015. He is a defensive end from Avon, Indiana. Joe, welcome to the show, how are you doing?
Joe Belden: Thanks for having me. I am doing great, how are you doing?
HH: I am good. Joe we are coming off the holiday season, Indiana made a big run on some commits. As one of the members of this, as you have dubbed it, Crimson Army 15, what are your views of this class?
JB: I think this class is really special. Like you said we have a bunch of big commits come over in the last few weeks and the last couple months and everything you see in each commit is that they are all good guys. I think that Coach Wilson is doing a great job of recruiting good people who want to work hard and everybody is hungry to get in and change the program around. I think that’s the big thing with this class is that we want to change the program around. We are not all right with a losing record. We say it all the time. We have this little group message, you know, and all we talk about is how we want to change the program and how we are not ok with this subpar play on the field. We are just ready to come in and help change it around.
HH: Right. Being from Indiana you know all about Indiana football. What does it mean to you, as a native Hoosiers, to be playing for Indiana University?
JB: I think it’s a big deal because I was born a Hoosier. My dad grew up in Bloomington, five minutes away from campus. So I have always been an Indiana guy and just getting an opportunity to suit up for the Hoosiers on Saturdays is just a great, great honor for me and I am just ready to do it. I am really ready to get after it.
HH: What, specifically, drew you to IU. There are three big time football programs in the state of Indiana. A bunch of them around in bordering states, what specifically drew you to Bloomington?
JB: Like I said, I have always been a Hoosiers. Growing up I always went to games or watched them on TV. It’s like an emotional attachment you know. In a way, whenever you have that feeling with something it is kind of hard to turn your back on it. I was getting recruited by Notre Dame and Purdue, but it was always IU for me. It is just hard to turn my back on them just because of that emotional passion that I had with Indiana.
HH: Right. On Twitter this class seems very close knit. You see you guys joke with each other, talk to each other. Every time another player commits you send out a Crimson Army Tweet. How much of a family is this class?
JB: You know, honestly, I know it sounds crazy, but I feel just as close with these guys as I know with guys I played four years of high school with and that I have known since second grade. I think that is a big deal with respect to the guys in this class that we wanted to bring the family aspect into this program, because whenever you are playing for family it is do or die. It is the love you have for the guy next to you, the things you are willing to do for them. You are ready to put your body on the line. I think you need that with football. I think its special that this class is developing that at such an early stage.
HH: All right. We are talking with Joe Belden, a defensive end commit to Indiana University. Joe, you were also recently named first team All-State by the AP. You are one of three Hoosier commits that were named to that team. What does that accolade mean to you?
JB: It means a lot. I am not really big on personal achievements, but its great that me and the other two guys have made that name for our selves, you know went out and produced on the field. I am just excited to go play with those two guys.
HH: Joe, you play defensive end, Brian Knorr’s defense is a 3-4 defense. Where do you see yourself playing and who, if anybody can you compare yourself to either on this Hoosier team or who you try to emulate in college football or in the NFL. Who do you compare yourself to?
JB: I’d say J.J. Watt, but I am not. You know I am not him at all, but more like on the IU team I am more like Bobby Richardson, but my favorite player to watch is J.J. Watt just because his talent is so rare, but he plays so hard and his motor is ridiculous. I have been know, I have made a name for myself to play with a high motor. I don’t give up on plays, but I’ll have to say I am more like a Bobby Richardson type player.
HH: Play with your hand in the ground and get after the quarterback a little bit.
HH: All right. What strengths do you see yourself having, bringing into the college game?
JB: My strengths are my mentality about the game. I am not afraid to go and compete. I am not the fastest, I am not the strongest, but I am not going to give up. You may knock me down, but I’ll get right back up.
HH: What do you see yourself needing to work on to get on the field at the college level either your freshman year or the year after? What do you need to work on to break into the line up a little bit.
JB: There are a few things I need to work on. Two things that stand out are my speed and my strength.
HH: Mark Hill has had a great strength program at Indiana. He has increased records in the weight room and every one that I have talked to at IU has great things to say about him. Have there been any injuries Joe?
JB: Yeah I fractured my wrist and ended the season with it. I got it checked out and I had two fractured bones in my wrist, but I am ready and I am back. Everything is fine now, but it wasn’t too serious to me because I could deal with the pain.
HH: Well, thanks for joining us Joe. I look forward to seeing you on the field and talking to you again and good luck finishing high school. August can’t come soon enough.
JB: Thank you
HH: All right thank you.