During a time when not much feels normal, class of 2022 quarterback Brady Allen is able to find familiarity with the IU football coaching staff.
Although Indiana lost its offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach during the offseason, the replacement has been a constant in Allen’s recruitment for nearly two years.
The 6-foot-5 ½, and 200 pound Allen has been a primary recruiting target of Indiana and new offensive coordinator Nick Sheridan since before the Fort Branch, Ind. product entered high school.
Sheridan’s early involvement with Allen is good news for IU, as the new man in charge of the offense has built a strong bond with the prized recruit.
“He (Sheridan) was really one of the first guys that was recruiting me,” Allen told The Daily Hoosier. “The first camp that I went to was at Indiana in the summer going into my freshman year. Coach Sheridan was really one of the first guys that I was recruited by and grew a relationship with.”
Allen and Sheridan have continued to talk regularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, and those are conversations that the Gibson Southern High School quarterback welcomes.
“I’ve been in contact with Coach Sheridan quite a bit (during the pandemic),” Allen said. “He’s a great guy and I enjoy talking to him.”
One topic that has come up when the two talk is Sheridan’s plans for the offense as he takes the reins as offensive coordinator.
Indiana made big strides on the offensive side of the ball in 2019 under the direction of Kalen DeBoer, and the message to Allen has been to expect more of the same.
“Talking with them I feel like they’re going to keep a lot of the same stuff they did last year,” Allen said. “They play to their guys strengths. They’re not going to force anything that the quarterback can’t do. I feel like he’s (Sheridan) going to do a great job.”
As a pro-style quarterback with mobility, Allen appears to be a good fit for the scheme that IU featured in 2019.
In 11 games as a sophomore at Gibson Southern, Allen threw for 2,671 yards with 31 touchdowns. He completed 62.2 percent of his throws and added three rushing touchdowns.
As a member of the class of 2022, Allen would arrive at IU for Michael Penix’s senior season if he chose to play in Bloomington.
That is a fairly attractive setup for Allen, who at this point projects to be ready to play early in his college career.
But Allen is maintaining a pragmatic approach. He knows that nothing will come easy at the next level.
“The big thing for me is just finding a place that fits me,” Allen said. “Anywhere you go you’re going to have to compete for the job. There’s going to be people ahead of you that you have to outwork and beat out to play.”
Allen’s focus right now isn’t necessarily on playing early in his career, but instead finding a school and a scheme that features his talents for the next level.
“If you look around the NFL, a lot of the quarterbacks only played a couple years (in college),” Allen told The Daily Hoosier. ” If you play one or two years and stay healthy and are able to go to the draft that’s not a real bad thing waiting a little bit, you get to learn the offense, and then once you step in and it’s your time, you get to take things in your own hands and do what you need to do.
“Obviously you are going to want to come in as a freshman and look to start and look to learn everything and be the guy, but if that doesn’t happen just keep working hard and it can come later if you keep working.
“The main thing for me is finding the best fit, and finding a place where I can succeed and be the best person that I can be.”
Finding the resources to realize his full potential has been challenge for Allen during the pandemic.
Like most athletes, he has run into limitations when it comes to his training regime.
Allen doesn’t have regular access to a weight room but he has worked with his trainer to find creative ways to stay active.
“We are doing parachutes, running stuff, staying in shape, all kinds of speed stuff,” Allen said.
When it comes to throwing the football, Allen and his receivers have found a local soccer field.
As he waits for things to return to normal, Allen continues to keep an open mind when it comes to his recruitment. While Indiana has been a strong presence, they are certainly not alone.
“I would say it is pretty open,” Allen told The Daily Hoosier about his recruitment. “A lot of schools are coming in hard, and a lot of it has been effected by what is going on (the COVID-19 pandemic).
“I can’t take any spring visits and they can’t come in to watch me throw. It’s been tough, but the main thing is just staying in contact with everybody. I’m looking forward to it picking back up.”
Allen said his timeline for making a decision may have been pushed back slightly due to the pandemic, but overall he is not in a rush to make a decision.
“A lot of kids in my class haven’t committed, so there isn’t an urge to commit,” Allen said. I’m just staying in contact with everybody and growing relationships so once things open back up I can take my visits, do what I need to do, and then when I feel ready I can make my decision.”
Allen is rated as a 4-star prospect by Rivals. He is ranked in the top-100 nationally of all players in the 2022 class by that service, and one of just ten quarterbacks in that group. 247Sports list Allen as the No. 264 player overall, and a 3-star.
Indiana is involved in a highly competitive and growing recruitment for Allen that includes offers from Purdue, Cincinnati, Wisconsin, Virginia Tech and Kansas along with Indiana. Several other top programs are involved including Notre Dame.
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