Every Friday in this space at 9 a.m. we will put on our prognosticator hats and try to project how Indiana will fare in football in the next day’s game.
Not surprisingly, our staff loaded up on a win last week by picking IU over Iowa. All of us are now 2-3 on the season except Sarah Beeson who is 3-2. Beeson was the only one on our staff that correctly picked Maryland to defeat IU in the B1G opener.
There’s a theme here, too. Sarah is the only one on the staff not from Indiana and so maybe she looks at things a little differently than the rest of us.
I have a feeling she is going to have a different take on this week’s game at Iowa, too. Stay tuned for Sarah’s pick.
Let’s look at Iowa.
This is a tough one because you have a couple of factors in play.
Number one, Indiana has not been historically good on the road. I won’t steal all of my thunder but I’ll have an IU Insider Blog here this morning that will address some of those topics. But the point is: the Hoosiers have never played well on the road. Now, this season has been a mixed bag. They went on the road and knocked off a top 20 team in Missouri. But they also got beat by Bowling Green on the road. Had IU won that game, the Hoosiers would be sitting a lot prettier here at 4-1 than 3-2.
Number two, Iowa has to be one of the least impressive 4-1 teams around. This team is only averaging about 22 points per game. The Hawkeyes have had to come from behind in most of their games including Ball State. Ball State ended up losing that game 17-13 and then the next week lost at home to Indiana State. Yikes.
So I’m thinking this is a game Indiana could steal on the road. At the same time, that little voice in my head is saying ‘You’ve seen this scenario before. Don’t be fooled. This is not going to turn out well.’
So that’s my dilemma. The Iowa Scout.com publisher, Rob Howe, who we featured in Thursday’s Scouting the Opponent feature picked Iowa to win 27-23.
The crazy thing is I don’t think this game will be that close. I think Indiana wins by 10 points or more. Am I crazy? Quite possibly.
Last week, I picked IU to win by 28 and the Hoosiers won by 25. This week I’m going with a 14-point Indiana win. Let’s see how it turns out.
My pick: Indiana 38, Iowa 24.
So that’ s my thought. What do you think? We’re going to open a thread on the premium and free boards for your picks.
You have my pick. Here are the predictions from the AllHoosiers.com staff.
Indiana 34, Iowa 31: As Terry mentioned above, this is a game Indiana can win. I actually think the Hoosiers have the better team. But a noon start on the road is always difficult, and Indiana has not been successful often in such Big Ten games. I'm going to take the Hoosiers in this one, but it will be critical that they get on top early. If they don't, they won't win. Book it.
Indiana 37, Iowa 20: Last week, IU faced a North Texas team that was 17th in the nation in total defense. This week, it will face an Iowa team ranked 15th in the same category. Like North Texas, I think those numbers are skewed because of who the Hawkeyes have played so far. The Hoosier offense is nothing like the Hawkeyes have played against. Nate Sudfeld will have another great passing day and IU will leave Iowa city with a win.
Indiana 27, Iowa 24: It's going to be a dogfight in Iowa City on Saturday, and I like the IU offense to continue to build off its first 40-point outing of the season last week. Indiana is fighting for its lives in this one, as dropping the first two conference games and looking at being under .500 going into the bye week in two weeks puts IU in a bad spot. It will come down to which team can run the ball better and control the clock, and I see Tevin Coleman and D'Angelo Roberts putting up big performances, while Nate Sudfeld will win it in the fourth quarter. Indiana hasn't won back-to-back games since 2012, but that streak ends on Saturday.
Iowa 36, Indiana 28: Indiana's offense will see what they've been seeing the past two weeks with opponents that pack the box to stop the running game. Fans will see more of the offense they saw last week against North Texas with a more balanced passing and running game. Indiana's defense will struggle against a talented Iowa offense, who has come from behind in each of it's four wins.Daily Feature: Scouting the Opponent
IU plans to enclose south end zone
Depth Chart: Dutra moves into two-deep