Penix in action against Penn State in 2018. Photo Credit - Getty Images North America

Indiana Football 2019 Position Preview: The Quarterbacks

The Daily Hoosier is previewing each position group during the final days leading up to the opening kickoff of the 2019 Indiana University football season on August 31 against Ball State in Indianapolis.

Today we take a look at the quarterbacks.  We are following a slightly different and abbreviated format for the quarterbacks since the position has been discussed extensively here and Michael Penix was announced as the starter this week.


One of the better quarterback competitions in the history of the IU football program came to a conclusion this week.

Tampa, Fla. product Michael Penix was named the starter by head coach Tom Allen on Monday.

Penix will be the third different starter in the last three seasons for IU.  The 6-foot-3 quarterback describes himself as a pro-style quarterback that can run.

More than anything, Penix is known for his strong arm — something the Hoosiers definitely will need to pull out wins against a brutal Big Ten schedule.

Still just a redshirt freshman, if all goes well Penix could be a four year starter for IU.

Standing by at the ready are last year’s starter Peyton Ramsey and transfer Jack Tuttle.

Ramsey is a redshirt junior, and Tuttle a redshirt freshman.

With both backups eligible to play next year, that means if all three players are back in Bloomington we will be doing this all over again.

THE 2019 ROSTER

WHAT THEY ARE SAYING

You can listen to head coach Tom Allen extensively discuss the decision to start Penix here:

Penix also spoke with the media this week.

THE OUTLOOK

Of course Penix is the starter.  Ramsey is No. 2 on the depth chart followed by Tuttle.

Allen indicated that there is no plan to rotate quarterbacks.  This is Penix’s team.

The unknowns with Penix are his accuracy and mobility when the pocket collapses.  Penix is a good runner, but he is ten months removed from knee surgery and hasn’t been tested since.

While he played in 2018, the results were mixed for Penix.  He had strong showings against Florida International and Ball State, but a 9-for-19 passing day against Penn State leaves questions about how well he will play against the better teams in the Big Ten.

As long as there are no midseason defections, Indiana should have confidence in its top three guys on the depth chart.  And that’s important.

IU has rarely gotten through a recent vintage season without multiple quarterbacks.  Whether due to injuries, performance or offensive wrinkles, the 2010 season led by Ben Chappell may have been the last.

The point?

We are likely to see Ramsey, and maybe even Tuttle at some point in 2019.

Ramsey has played in 20 games, and Tuttle might be the highest rated quarterback recruit that IU has ever had on its roster.

Of course the optimal answer is that Penix stays healthy and thrives.

But things happen.

And if it comes to that the Hoosiers appear to be in good shape.

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