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IU Football: The Status of the True Freshmen Under the Redshirt Rule

Under a rule established in 2018, college athletes competing in Division I football can participate in up to four games in a season without using a season of competition.

Division I student-athletes have five years to compete in up to four seasons of competition. The new exception allows football players to preserve a season of competition if, for example, injuries or other factors result in them competing in a small number of games.

Indiana will be able to take advantage of the redshirt rule with 12 of its true freshmen on the 2019 roster including two of its 4-star recruits from the 2019 class.

Below is a summary of the status of each true freshman on IU’s 2019 roster vis-a-vis the redshirt rule.

(Participation totals obtained or compiled based on information on


The following players played in more than four games and will return to Indiana next season as sophomores.

3 Mullen, Tiawan DB 5-10 175
10 Ellis, David WR/KR 6-0 207
24 James, Sampson RB 6-1 220
42 Bonhomme, D.K. LB 6-3 238
50 Nofoagatoto’a, Sio DL 6-4 327
76 Bedford, Matthew OL 6-6 307
95 Wracher, Sean LS 6-4 223


The following players played in four or less games and will return next season as redshirt freshmen.

13 Tracy III, Larry DB 5-11 175
17 Jakes, Jordan WR 6-5 210
19 Sanguinetti, Josh DB 6-1 173
40 Williams, Cameron LB 6-3 215
41 Robbins, Beau DL 6-5 250
55 Person, C.J. DL 6-3 297
56 Katic, Mike OL 6-4 312
73 Weaver, Tim OL 6-5 309
80 Brown, Da’Shaun WR 6-2 180
81 Cooper, Gary TE 6-2 235
91 Passmore, Jeramy DL 6-3 270
95 Whitner Jr., Antoine DL 6-5 305


One of the more interesting stories to follow during the offseason will be whether four year starting left tackle and team captain Coy Cronk will return to Bloomington next season.  The Lafayette native suffered a season ending lower leg injury against Connecticut.  Because that game was IU’s fourth of the season, Cronk is also able to return as a fifth year player under the redshirt rule.

Indiana head coach Tom Allen addressed Cronk’s decision making process a couple weeks ago.

“He’s working really hard to get back. I know obviously as a senior would love to have the opportunity to move on and play in the NFL, if he can get healthy,” Allen said.  “If he is not going to be able to be healthy enough to do that, seems like he would be open and willing to go back, be able to play that last year.

“That’s something he’s going to work through. We’re kind of just being patient right now. Right now the whole focus is get healthy. He’s working his tail off. We’ll see what happens with that.”

Cronk’s replacement at left tackle was Matthew Bedford.  Both Bedford and starting right tackle Caleb Jones will be back next season, while starting interior linemen Simon Stepaniak and Hunter Littlejohn have both exhausted their eligibility.

If Cronk returns, one option could be to move him to the interior, which could ultimately benefit him when it comes to the NFL Draft.  Cronk has put out plenty of film as a tackle, but he may project at the next level as a guard.  Playing a year on the interior would give scouts a chance to see him at guard as well.

See also:  Indiana’s 2020 schedule gives Hoosiers a chance to continue success

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