Over at Assembly Hall, they’re talking about the possibility of a sixth national championship.
Down at Bill Armstrong Stadium, there’s reasonable chatter about IU men’s soccer contending for an eighth national title.
At Memorial Stadium?
Well, a Big Ten win would be nice.
Indiana’s lone win in Kevin Wilson’s first season as head coach last year came at home against FCS opponent South Carolina State. Since the 2007 season, when the Hoosiers went 7-6 and played in the Insight Bowl, IU is 3-29 in the Big Ten.
Wilson, though, doesn’t want to dwell on the past.
“It’s year two. If you look back, you’re not going to go anywhere, so we’ve been looking forward,” Wilson said. “We’ve tried to learn from [year one], move forward, and try to do what’s best for us.”
As important as assembling a more talented team is developing a good atmosphere around the football program.
“We’re just trying to create a culture in our building about how to work and how to win,” Wilson said. “Around here, as soon as we do good, we’ve been so poor, as soon as someone does something, someone pats them on the head. Their head gets inflated.
“We’re not a bad team because of bad players. We’re a bad team because good players don’t play good enough. That’s why you’re not good.”
Last season, Wilson didn’t announce a starting quarterback until Edward Wright-Baker walked onto the field to begin the season opener against Ball State.
Wright-Baker is gone, with sophomore Tre Roberson the starter now. Roberson fended off a challenge from junior college transfer Cameron Coffman to earn the starting job.
“[Tre] consistently made the fewest mistakes,” Wilson said. “He definitely gives us a little bit of a threat of a quarterback run game, but he’s made the fewest mistakes with the ball and got to where he was clicking in the passing game at a reasonably high level.”
The tailback position is more in flux. While freshman Tevin Coleman is listed as the starter, Wilson said Tuesday that Coleman will share playing time with Stephen Houston, last season’s top rusher, and D’Angelo Roberts.
Wilson said Houston can play better.
“He’s got really good feet. He’s got really good hands,” Wilson said of Houston. “But he needs to be better in pass protection. He needs to run behind his pads and get two or three tough yards. That’s where he’s not complete.”
Based on the Hoosiers’ depth chart for Saturday’s season-opener against Indiana State, IU will again be a young team. After playing 32 freshmen last season, the Hoosiers will have seven first- or second-year players in the offensive starting lineup.
That includes youngsters at both tackle spots, with converted tight end Jason Spriggs starting at left tackle as a true freshman and sophomore Peyton Eckert at right tackle, where he started six games last season.
Wilson has called Spriggs one of the best freshmen he’s ever had.
“A little light [Spriggs is listed at 268 pounds on the depth chart], but being a line coach myself, there’s things we’ll do schematically to help those guys out,” Wilson said.
The defense is a bit more experienced, but must play better against the run and force more turnovers to help the Hoosiers improve as a whole.
IU allowed 243.7 yards per game on the ground last season while forcing just 18 turnovers.
“I think every phase [of the defense] has to get better,” co-defensive coordinator Doug Mallory said earlier this month. “I think we’re still better than we were at any point even during the spring.
“One thing we talked to them [about], we’re going to be a great defense, a great offense and great special teams only with great effort,” he said. “We aren’t talented enough as an overall program right now that we can ever afford to go out and have a bad practice. We’ve got to go out with purpose each and every day.”
The need to improve quickly led to an influx of junior college players on defense, with two-thirds of the starting linebacker corps being JUCO players — Jacarri Alexander at strongside linebacker and David Cooper in the middle.
“[They] are great leaders, they fit right in,” sophomore safety Mark Murphy said.
The increased depth on IU’s roster should help on special teams. And the Hoosiers are in good shape in the kicking department with Mitch Ewald, who hasn’t missed an extra point in his two seasons and is 29-of-35 (82.9 percent) on field goals.
Mitchell Voss takes over as punter. As a freshman at Ferris State in 2009, he averaged 39.3 yards on 46 punts, including a school-record 69-yarder.
Speedsters Nick Stoner, Shane Wynn and Ricky Jones will share return duties.
Over at Assembly Hall, they’re talking about the possibility of a sixth national championship.
Saint Mary-of-the-Woods sweeps doubleheader over Rose-Hulman
Over the years, defeating its crosstown rival has not usually been easy for Saint Mary-of-the-Woods or Rose-Hulman when they’ve met in college softball.
But on Wednesday afternoon at The Woods, the home team made its doubleheader sweep look easy to first-year coach Mark Feller with five-inning decisions of 10-0 and 11-1.
Terre Haute North grad O'Leary to transfer from Loyola
Matt O’Leary is one of three men's basketball players at Loyola recently granted a release from his scholarship from the Missouri Valley Conference school.
The former Terre Haute North standout told the Tribune-Star he doesn’t yet know his next move.
Rose-Hulman, Woods to face off on softball diamond
The Rose-Hulman softball team will visit a familiar foe today when the Engineers take on crosstown rival Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College in a nonleague doubleheader.
ISU baseball holds off Eastern Illinois for 24th win
Indiana State freshman left-hander Ryan Keaffaber won his first game as a Sycamore and senior catcher Mike Fitzgerald went 3 for 3 as ISU defeated host Eastern Illinois 6-4 in college baseball Tuesday.
Top returners lead Cream over Crimson in Hoosiers' spring game
The Cream team at Saturday’s Cream and Crimson intrasquad game had Indiana’s top returning rusher and receiver and the Hoosiers’ top-rated passer from last season.
No surprise, then, that Tevin Coleman, Shane Wynn and Tre Roberson guided the Cream to a resounding 24-14 win over the Crimson.
Rose-Hulman baseball gets wild doubleheader sweep
Host Rose-Hulman came back from an early six-run deficit in the first game Saturday and went on to a 13-12, 7-1 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference baseball sweep over Mount St. Joseph.
The wild opener featured a Rose-Hulman comeback from an 8-2 deficit and included 18 hits and two school records for the Engineers.
METRO ROUNDUP: ISU softball earns doubleheader sweep at Missouri State
Yvette Alvarez’s one-hit shutout capped a dominant day of pitching Saturday as Indiana State swept a Missouri Valley Conference softball doubleheader at Missouri State by scores of 6-1 and 4-0.
“We pitched well,” coach Shane Bouman said. “Both Taylor Lockwood in the first game and Yvette Alvarez in the second game threw great. When you pitch good and you play good defense and get some key hits, good things are going to happen.
ISU football set for first spring scrimmage
Thanks to a limited number of available offensive linemen — a group that will at least double in numbers in the fall with the addition of recruits and currently injured players — the Sycamores won’t have a full-scale scrimmage, but will still intersperse scrimmage plays (with officials) among other practice drills.
“We’re thin,” coach Mike Sanford admitted after practice Thursday. “The scrimmage will be part of practice — probably 30 or 40 plays altogether. We only have five to seven healthy offensive linemen, so we can’t go [in a scrimmage format] for long stretches of time.”
METRO ROUNDUP: Waltman's funeral Saturday at Indianapolis
Royce Waltman’s visitation will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday at St. Luke’s Methodist Church at 100 E. 86th Street, Indianapolis.
ISU baseball falls to Vanderbilt 6-2
The seventh-ranked Vanderbilt Commodores took control early to defeat the Indiana State Sycamores 6-2
ISU baseball sweeps doubleheader against Wichita State
Indiana State baseball coach Mitch Hannahs finally got what he’s been looking for from the Sycamores’ Friday and Saturday starters ... and it couldn’t have come at a better time.
Preseason Missouri Valley Conference favorite Wichita State is in town for a crucial series. With ISU 2-4 in the league, it was vital for the Sycamores to validate their better-than-expected form in nonconference play with MVC success in Saturday’s doubleheader at Bob Warn Field.
METRO ROUNDUP: Rose-Hulman's nine-game winnings streak snapped
Rose-Hulman had its nine-game winning streak snapped with two tightly contested losses at defending Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference champion Manchester on Saturday.
Sycamores get commitment from junior-college point guard
Following Indiana State’s loss to Marquette in the WNIT, coach Teri Moren touched on the future of the program after the loss of Sycamore senior Bilqis Abdul-Qaadir.
Prusator gives ISU a shooter for 2015
Grant Prusator, a native of Rochelle, Ill., has made a verbal commitment to play basketball for Indiana State starting in the 2014-15 season. He will have three years of eligibility with the Sycamores as he played just one year for Highland Community College.
Metro sports: Locks of Love tournament today at Memorial Stadium
The Indiana State Women’s Soccer team will host its annual Locks of Love tournament today. The 4th annual event will begin at 9 a.m. at Memorial Stadium.
Indiana State secondary could be mending into a strength
During Indiana State’s injury-ravaged 2013 season, there wasn’t a unit on either side of the ball that was spared from the carnage.
But if one had to be singled out as hardest hit in the injury department, it would be difficult to out-do the Sycamores’ secondary.
Every player that started in ISU’s season opener at Indiana not only missed at least one game last season, but the entire starting unit was out of action by the end of September.
Reed named Midseason National Player of the Year
Half of the college baseball season is done and one prominent college baseball publication thinks Terre Haute’s A.J. Reed is best player in the land.
Reed, a junior at Kentucky, was named the Midseason National Player of the Year by Perfect Game USA, a website devoted to college baseball.
Laramie to transfer from ISU women's basketball program
Indiana State forward Marina Laramie averaged 9.9 points and started all 32 games as a sophomore for the Sycamores.
But the 6-foot-2 women’s basketball player will continue her career elsewhere.
Metro sports: ISU blanks Austin Peay in 6-plus innings
Indiana State’s baseball team posted another mid-week victory Wednesday night as four pitchers combined to throw a three-hit shutout and lead a 3-0 victory over Austin Peay State at Bob Warn Field.
Chicago guard commits to ISU women's basketball
The Indiana State women’s basketball team picked up a verbal commitment from Chicago guard Kiera Brooks on Tuesday.
The 5-foot-7 junior for North Lawndale College Prep visited ISU’s campus for the first time, met the team and chose her college home. Brooks averaged 18.7 points, six rebounds, four assists and two steals for coach Corey Morgan’s 15-11 squad.
METRO ROUNDUP: ISU softball tops IU 7-5
The Indiana State softball team remained a perfect 13-0 when scoring in the first inning as it defeated Indiana (9-24-1) 7-5 Tuesday for its second consecutive victory over a Big Ten opponent.
Dedicated to helping others
It’s not like Marissa Stout is bored out of her mind and lacking for things to do.
Metro sports: ISU’s Stone, Riemenschneider honored by MVC
Indiana State junior Megan Stone and freshman Brooke Riemenschneider each earned Missouri Valley Conference Athlete of the Week honors, according to an announcement from the league office Monday.
ISU baseball shows mental toughness in win over Illinois State
When the pressure’s on, there’s nothing a coach likes more than to see his team double down on their approach and grit out a positive result.
Going the distance: Redbirds ace Savas allows just five hits while shutting down Sycamores
Indiana State’s pitchers weren’t their best in Friday’s series opener against Illinois State, but it seemed the Sycamores might get away with it. Through seven innings, ISU had issued six walks, gave up six hits and hit a batter, but still trailed by just a run. But ISU’s luck with its generosity would give out in the eighth, and even if it hadn’t, Illinois State standout starter Dan Savas had the Sycamores’ bats in a deep freeze anyway. The Redbirds defeated the Sycamores 5-2 at Bob Warn Field.
Woods softball team wins 4th straight
The Saint Mary-of-the-Woods softball team swept Grace College with a pair of wins in its home opener Wednesday.
Devoted brothers: Mahurins relish chance to team up and win NAIA title
It wasn’t a great year for NCAA basketball in the Hoosier state outside of Indiana State’s 23-victory season.
But a team in NAIA Division II with eight Indiana natives — and coached by former Valparaiso point guard Greg Tonagel, an Indiana All-Star for his hometown of LaPorte — brought home a national basketball championship.
Tonagel, the scrappy point guard who played alongside Bryce Drew for that magical Valpo team, created more March hoops memories with the help of Rockville brothers R.J. and Lane Mahurin.
‘A full night’: Leadoff hitter Curry leads 16-hit attack as Sycamores pound Hoosiers
Lead-off man Landon Curry had four of Indiana State’s 16 hits Wednesday afternoon, and cleanup hitter Mike Fitzgerald reached for the 17th straight game to lead the Sycamores to a 12-8 victory.
Fresh start: ISU football team springs into action for coach Sanford’s second season
Many things change from year one to year two in someone’s coaching regime, but when it comes to football, few things change more dramatically in that span than spring football practice.
Etherington, Hollowell leaving IU
Two players are leaving Indiana University’s basketball program while a third is reportedly planning to leave early for the NBA. IU confirmed Monday afternoon that redshirt sophomore Austin Etherington and sophomore Jeremy Hollowell will transfer.
- More College Headlines
- Saint Mary-of-the-Woods sweeps doubleheader over Rose-Hulman