Saturday, November 7, 2009

Hall of Fame weekend in Bloomington

The Hoosiers honored Bob Knight, Jerry Yeagley and the rest of the IU Hall of Fame class of 2009 last night. Knight was not there. The more pressing business now is the football game against Wisconsin this afternoon.

Indianapolis Star IU writer Terry Hutchens wrote about IU's second half offensive struggles this week. I'm glad someone finally asked that question. I had been waiting all season for an answer.

The Badgers present a different problem for the IU defense. Wisconsin runs first and often. They average nearly 195 yards rushing per game, less than four yards per game than they average passing. This comes after spending the last two weeks dealing with pass-happy Northwestern and Iowa, which won the game on two big pass plays.

The more conservative Badger attack likely will equate to long drives, leaving the IU defense on the field for huge chunks at a time. It also means the Hoosiers' offense will be on the bench for long periods, unable to score.

The key to this game will be the IU defense's ability to force three-and-outs to stay in the game. Unfortunately, this sets up for a second half collapse. IU's defensive players will no doubt wear down late, letting Wisconsin have those long drives for touchdowns.

IU has had Wisconsin's number in recent games in Bloomington. I think the Hoosiers keep it close and may even have the lead at halftime, but can't sustain it late. It's another 30-minute victory. Wisconsin wins 24-13.