Devine Redding started the 2016 season just like he finished the 2015 season, and that is by rushing for more than a 100 yards and spearheading the IU rushing attack. The junior from Ohio finished with 135 yards rushing on 22 carries in the 34-13 win over the Panthers.
Redding said after the game that the four straight games of over 100 yards rushing for him is not a big deal because it’s not what he is focused on.
“I guess it’s nice and a good thing to have off the field, but I just really want to help the team,” he said. “I just love playing football.”
Indiana head coach Kevin Wilson said afterwards he was a little surprised by Redding’s performance only because he wasn’t sure any of the backs would get enough carries to have a chance at rushing for 100 yards.
“It was good, but at the same time I didn’t expect him to have that much because I thought Deland would play enough guys that we would get into the numbers of what guys get,” Wilson said about Redding’s performance. “I was looking more at yards per carry and (team) rushing total and touchdowns more than one guy got so it is a credit to Devine and Coach McCullough. We’re not trying to get him a personal big year, because we’ve been saying there are six, seven, eight guys that are going to carry the rock.”
Indiana quarterback Richard Lagow said having a running game like IU has with Redding leading the way makes things much easier for him.
“It is priceless,” Lagow said when asked about having a RB like Redding to hand the ball off to. “It makes my job a lot easier. It doesn’t put as much on me when you have the offensive line we have and the running backs we have. I just give him the ball and let him do what he does.”
With so many backs that can carry the ball and be productive Redding said his message to all the other backs is give it everything you have when you get that opportunity to play.
“I try to give my all when I’m out there,” Redding said. “I try to help the team in the best way possible. I put forth my all and that’s what I try to preach to the other running backs and Coach (McCullough) is going to have your back. I told them to go 100 percent every play, that’s what I told everybody.”