Mike Pegram/Peegs.com

Coach Allen Verbatim: Spring Game

Peegs.com has the transcript of what IU head coach Tom Allen said to the media after the 2017 Cream & Crimson Spring Game.

Read the entire transcript of what Indiana head coach Tom Allen had to say to reporters tonight after the Cream & Crimson Spring Game that was won by the Crimson in overtime by the score of 42-36.

On having Jon Gruden around today… 

“Amazing.  He really has a genuine love for Bloomington and for Indiana.  Sitting with him in here, doing the video sessions and talking to him… he is the same as when you see him on television, that is who he is all the time.  He was insightful about some things, I talked to him as a head coach, got some advice about some things and we talked a little ball.  We just enjoyed having him here with us, his dad and family too.  We really appreciate him coming and doing this with us.  He was pretty fired up.  Like he said, he had not seen this place in 40 years.  Obviously things have changed a little bit.  He was very impressed with the facilities, the north end zone addition and what we have planned for the south end zone.  Pretty special time for our program to have him with us.”

On the play of Peyton Ramsey… 

“I am not surprised by his play at all.  I watched him last year when he worked with the scouts as a true freshman.  He is a coach’s kid.  He has a lot of confidence and toughness.  He is a good decision maker and a really good football player.”

On Ramsey pushing Lagow… 

“We all need that.  We all need to be pushed.  People need to feel that there is somebody on their heels.  That keeps us sharp, keeps us focused.  Again, I am not surpised at all with how he played tonight.”

On how the defense performed… 

“We split the teams pretty evenly.  We did not let them call a lot of things, which was by design.  I do not think we tackled as well as we should have.  We had a couple of offsides, where they [the offense] got us to jump, which I did not like.  The kids competed.  We do not have a ton of depth when you split the team up, so when the offense goes with tempo that becomes challenging.  That is part of it, but we all knew that going into the game.  I thought it was really competitive on both sides.  It is interesting that the game ended in a tie, because when I went back and graded the draft, it came up even.  Both sides had the same number of positions that I felt they had won.  It was an even draft and an even game.”

On whether there was any hesitation about playing the overtime… 

“No hesitation.  I want to create as many game-like situations as we can, and to me, that was perfect.  In fact, if you noticed, there was a call that setup that last touchdown that I told the officials to re-evaluate.  I want to put us in tough spots.  I want to be able to create that adversity, create that stress on both the coaches and the players and see how we respond.  To me, that is where we want to be.  We want to be finishing those types of games, when it is the fourth quarter, a call goes against us and we have to respond.  We have to flush it and go play the next play.  They did not score on that play, but we gave up a score right after that.  It is about mental toughness and developing that.  I was thrilled that it went to overtime.”

On if he got what he wanted out of spring ball… 

“I felt like we wanted to improve fundamentally, wanted to be able to experiment with some scheme, develop depth and end the spring as a better football team.  I believe we accomplished those four things.”

On the pass plays to Ricky Brookins… 

“I feel that he is something, defensively, that gives us trouble.  You try to get depths in your drops and they dump it down to the running back, he makes one guy miss in space and it becomes a problem.  He is a good athlete, he has good hands and he is a tough, hard-nosed kid.  He showed up in the bowl game, showed up in games that we needed him and showed up again tonight.  I am proud of his effort, but once again, I am not surprised by his play.”

On his lack of depth at the running backs position... 

"We had a couple of guys with Mike Majette getting hurt during spring and Cole Gest getting hurt last week. I really hoped to get those guys through spring and to play in this game but they'll be fine. We are definitely concerned with our depth. We have a couple of freshman coming in the fall. It just seems like no matter how many running backs you have, you can't have enough."

On Rashard Fant's injury... 

"Don't really know for sure yet but he walked off and I feel good about that. I'm going to go and check on him."

On using Marcelino Ball on offense... 

"The defensive staff was like "If something happens to that guy." So I said "He has one play," You saw the athlete he is so I wasn't shocked. I told him you don’t palm the ball, he's not Deion (Sanders). He may get an interception which I’m sure he will and he's going to score. He's a gifted athlete and that's what they do, make plays."

On if they would ever use Ball on offense in the regular season... 

"You never know. He looked pretty good didn't he?"

On RB Alex Rodriguez's performance... 

"Big. Physical. Tough. In fact, if you noticed, he was the only back they had. He played every single snap and he took pride in that. He came to me and said 'Coach, I'm not going to let them sub me out.' Mindset, toughness, I love it."

On the offensive progress over the spring... 

"I think you saw it tonight. They have a good grasp of basic concepts of what we're installing. They want to execute it in a game like situation. It was a lot of different players involved, we played a whole bunch of guys. I felt like they made a lot of progress, feel good with where they are at. Obviously, have a long way to go. Good start. Good foundation laid. Ready to go to phase two which is the summer phase."

On how Simmie Cobbs played... 

"He did a lot of good things. He had the early drop, we have to make sure those don't happen. Big, physical guy. Still not 100% yet, he will be. Great to see him back out there. He cares a bunch and has worked so hard to get back. He has a presence about him. He is a huge part of what we have planned for the future."

On the Isaac James throw, trick play... 

"We broke off the last practice and they got to practice cream and crimson, one indoors, one outdoors so they had privacy. I told them they get two trick plays, that's it. That put them in on Tuesday and ran them today. Sometimes you work on a play a whole bunch it doesn't work, sometimes you work on a play one time and you rush for a big play. I wanted to make it fun."

On the tempo of the game... 

"I thought it was good. With the depth, we had to make sure we were controlling it a little bit. We are a temp team. We want to be aggressive attacking on defense, aggressive attacking on offense. That's the culture we have here and that's a part of our mindset, the way we train, practice, and the way we want to play on Saturday's."

On what positions to target in recruiting after 15 spring practices... 

"I would say the depth of position. You go through spring and see where guys are a year from when they got here. Guys coming off of injury and seeing how he's progressing. I think that forces you to feel better about a certain position or go after a different one. It's all about depth and where you have needs. No question, our post spring evaluations will help gear the final numbers, but who you end up taking the final spots."


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