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IU football marches forward in recruiting cycle after early signing period | Where they stand in national rankings

With college football’s early signing period in progress, Indiana’s future has become partially more in focus.

The Hoosiers have added 16 players, with 11 incoming freshmen, two junior college transfers, and three Division I transfers. Overall, head coach Tom Allen was looking to add athleticism and size, and he feels like he has that in this group.

“When I think about this class and what they bring to us, just trying to emphasize length, athleticism,” Allen said in a Zoom press conference Wednesday. “Speed is always going to be a variable we’re trying to improve here, but really trying to get bigger, longer guys. It always is about fit for me. That will never change no matter where they come from. So this class is just full of that. A lot of good balance here.”

IU’s class of 2023 ranks No. 71 in the country, and last in the Big Ten, according to the 247Sports Composite. The Hoosiers check in four spots in the national rankings below the next-lowest Big Ten team, Purdue.

Those rankings factor in numbers from several different major recruiting outlets, but only account for incoming freshmen and junior college additions. 247Sports has its own rankings that factor in transfers, and IU sees a boost there. The Hoosiers jump to No. 62 in the nation and No. 13 in the Big Ten on that list.

In 247Sports Composite, most of IU’s incoming freshmen and junior college additions grade as three-stars, with just one two-star (safety Jamison Kelly). Defensive line transfer Andre Carter from Western Michigan rates as a four-star.

A notable addition, given where IU stands at the position, in this class is quarterback Broc Lowry. The Hoosiers saw Jack Tuttle, Connor Bazelak, and Grant Gremel head to the transfer portal after the season, leaving only Dexter Williams and Brendan Sorsby. Williams, of course, suffered a gruesome leg injury against Purdue and had surgery. Allen said the sophomore is now in the rehab process.

IU may look to add another quarterback for next season in the transfer portal. While Williams is working through rehab in hopes of returning for next fall, he certainly won’t be ready to return for spring ball. And the Hoosiers will want a veteran arm to work with the offense.

“We have three scholarship quarterbacks right now, and the goal is to add an additional one — an older one would be ideal,” Allen said. “That’s the plan, in terms of being able to have four guys on scholarship in that room and especially with Dexter’s status.”

Now, Allen and his staff turn their eyes to February 1, the traditional National Signing Day.

The immediate focus, Allen said, is on transfers. From January 4 to Jan. 9, transfers (and only transfers) can make campus visits. That period will be critical for IU in addressing some more immediate needs.

After that, the staff will return to the recruiting trail in trying to get more high school prospects on board. And Allen thinks there could be a lot of talent still available there, because of the transfer portal’s prevalence, that might have already been gone in the past.

“There’s still two classes of guys that have COVID years left that are still out there in circulation, and that keeps these spots continuing to be able to be used up in some ways,” Allen said. “It’s kind of allowed some high school guys that maybe would have already been signed and been somewhere else still to be available. So definitely aware of that.”

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