IU football is a big underdog in 2023 season opener

There will be no easing in to the 2023 season.

Like Tom Allen’s first full season as head coach in Bloomington, the Hoosiers will open the 2023 campaign by hosting national power Ohio State.

And it should come as no surprise — oddsmakers are expecting a rough start for IU.  The Buckeyes have opened as 28-point favorites in the Sept. 2 contest, according to DraftKings.

While the 28 points is a massive number, it doesn’t seem all that bad based on the recent history in the series.

Ohio State has won the last two meetings with IU by an average of 45 points. Have the Hoosiers bridged the gap?

Not really.  The line likely reflects ongoing uncertainty for the Buckeyes at the quarterback position.

Junior Kyle McCord appears to be on track to take over at quarterback for C.J. Stroud, with sophomore Devin Brown also in contention.  The Buckeyes also have some question marks along their offensive line.

Indiana, meanwhile, has to replace significant production on both sides of the ball.

Things started out promising in the season opening meeting six years ago.

In a primetime game on Aug. 31, IU led Ohio State 14-13 at halftime to kick off the 2017 campaign.  But the Buckeyes dominated the second half and cruised to a 49-21 win at Memorial Stadium.

That was Tom Allen’s first Big Ten game as the IU head coach.  He is 0-6 against OSU.  The only other game during his time with IU that was close was a 42-35 loss in Columbus in 2020.  Ohio State has outscored Indiana 110-21 over the last two seasons, and also won 52-10 in 2019.

No IU coach since the late Bill Mallory can claim a win over OSU.

Overall IU has lost 27 straight games to the Buckeyes, dating back to a 27-all tie in 1990.  Indiana’s last win in the series was 1988, when they defeated OSU 41-7.   The Hoosiers outscored the Buckeyes 72-17 with back-to-back wins in 1987 and 1988.

The 2023 season opener kicks off in 99 days.

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