BLOOMINGTON – Indiana football coach Tom Allen met the media prior to the men’s basketball game at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall against Michigan State.
While Trayce Jackson-Davis lit up the Hall with a 31-point effort in the Hoosiers’ win against the Spartans, Indiana football fans are excited about the addition of Jackson-Davis’ brother, Tayven, who has transferred from Tennessee to possibly be Indiana’s quarterback for the 2023 season.
Jackson announced his commitment last week. Indiana recruited Jackson out of Center Grove and finally got its man.
“What we liked about him was his athleticism. He’s a long athlete, multi-sport guy, basketball, track, all three of those, and just felt like that he could create with his legs, with his arm. He’s a tremendous leader,” Allen said.
Jackson played only two games for the Volunteers. He completed two passes in two attempts against Akron. Though he was battle-tested in Knoxville, Allen knew what he was getting into given the ties created during Jackson’s high school recruitment.
“We have a lot of close ties to their staff and know them well, which allows us to know him even better, the behind the scenes leadership piece that he brought and the confidence and the swagger that he brings to a room when he walks in there,” Allen noted.
“Those are things you’re looking for in a quarterback, the ability to throw the football and run the football, has had dual effectiveness in high school and then you saw that even this past year playing the time that he played at Tennessee.”
Jackson joins a quarterback room that currently has freshmen Broc Lowry and Brendan Sorsby. Dexter Williams II, who started Indiana’s final two games before suffering a devastating knee injury in the season finale against Purdue, is also back but unlikely to play in 2023.
Allen doesn’t currently plan to add any other quarterbacks.
“We have had discussions about that, but that’s one of those things that is a little challenging to do. Sounds great, being able to bring an older guy in to do all of that, but not sure how that’s going to play itself out. Don’t have plans to do that right now,” said Allen, who also said there would be a re-evaluation after spring ball was over.
With football signing day around the corner Feb. 1, Allen gave a synapsis of what he feels the Hoosiers still need to bolster their roster.
“Some more depth on the defensive line would be a focus. Probably a guy or two in the secondary. We’ll probably go younger with that group. Potentially a wide receiver as well,” Allen said. “I would say we feel good about where we’re at on the offensive line. We could add an additional spot there to have some flexibility with that. Also, tight end would give us some flexibility.”
The transfer portal adds a dimension to all of it.
“It’s definitely a whole new world of opportunities that we have now for us to pick from that we have not had in the past,” Allen said.