Over the next few weeks, we'll be providing a quick-hit, uninformed, uneducated, poorly-researched capsule preview of each Big Ten football team (you know, kind of like typical reporters). Why spend time bringing in guests who actually know something about these other schools when we can just make knee-jerk comments and predictions, with heavy bias based on our love of Boilermaker sports? Enjoy.
Last year: 3-9 Overall, 1-7 Big Ten
Vs. Boilermakers: Lost 62-10
There are some rose-colored glasses out there if you dig deep enough, but the general consensus is that IU is the only team in the league worse than our Boilermakers. But of course Bill Lynch has to be optimistic – this is probably his last season (fairly or unfairly) to prove himself. If the Hoosiers have a mediocre-to-poor year, he might be gone. If they get embarrassed in the Bucket Game again this year, regardless of the rest of the season, then you have to think it’s a certainty. They’ll put up with some losing at IU – but crushing Bucket Game losses have been the end for other coaches.
IU moved Kellen Lewis out to WR and then moved him even further out… to off the team. We applaud the program making tough choices but he was their lone bright spot. To think they can compete without him when they barely competed WITH him is something of a stretch. And looking at their schedule, well, it could get ugly.
Sept. 3 EASTERN KENTUCKY
Sept. 12 WESTERN MICHIGAN
Sept. 19 at Akron
Sept. 26 at Michigan
Oct. 3 OHIO STATE (media guide picture day)
Oct. 10 at Virginia
Oct. 17 ILLINOIS
Oct. 24 at Northwestern
Oct. 31 at Iowa
Nov. 7 WISCONSIN
Nov. 14 at Penn State
Nov. 21 PURDUE
I’m not saying this will happen, but is it unreasonable to say that IU could go 0-12? Again, I don’t think they will go winless. But some of their best chances for wins (Akron, Michigan)are on the road. Give our hated rivals this much: they don’t have a plate full o’ cupcakes here. So what do we think?
Best case: 7-5. The Hoosiers could realistically start strong and reel off a 4-0 start, especially if they win their first two home games. They’ve got virtually no chance against OSU or @PSU, but their other games could honestly go any direction.
Worst case: 0-12. As mentioned, Indiana could theoretically lose any of these games. There’s isn’t a slam-dunk gimme on here. Which, again, is admirable, actually.
Our prediction: 3-9. If the team falters out of the gate, it’ll be a long season. If they start strong, their hope and optimism will keep them in a lot of games. But it’s hard to imagine a team that was pretty bad last year and got monumentally crushed by a lousy Purdue team would be able to lose their best player and somehow improve.