Arriving at IU in 2016, the same year that Tom Allen took over as defensive coordinator, Coy Cronk has been a fixture on the starting offensive line.
The Lafayette native has started all 40 games in which he has appeared at left tackle, missing one game due to injury since his arrival at Indiana.
Cronk is a senior captain on this 2019 Indiana football team, and when he went down with a gruesome leg injury in the first half of the Hoosiers’ 38-3 win over UConn, all of his teammates came out on the field to check on him.
Indiana's bench empties as IU players to go out to midfield to gather around Coy Cronk who was carted off the field with 9 minutes to go in the first quarter. #iufb pic.twitter.com/7mGTIxdE8B
— Indiana Sports Beat Radio w/Jim Coyle🎙️ (@jimcoyleISB) September 21, 2019
With his teammates surrounding him on the field, Cronk gave a quick fiery speech to refocus them. “Keep fighting boys. Fight for me. Get this win.”
Cronk’s teammates continued the tribute by scoring a touchdown on the drive, and the love for the 6-foot-5 325 pound left tackle extended into the post-game locker room where Allen awarded him the game ball.
Game ball goes to @CoyCronk!! Leading our team with everything he has. pic.twitter.com/9bES6ympah
— Coach Tom Allen (@CoachAllenIU) September 21, 2019
Minor setback!! Proud of my teammates who played their hearts out thank you to Hoosier nation for the support
— Coy Cronk (@CoyCronk) September 21, 2019
After the game, Coach Allen and several players spoke about Cronk.
On the injury:
“We’ll know for sure but it doesn’t look good. We’ll find out once we get all the information back, but it could be a tough one.”
“Man I just love that kid. He’s just so tough and he’s given so much to this place. So I hope it’s not the end of his season.”
“What does he mean (to the team), you saw by the way the team responded. It’s rare that it happens like that (with all of his teammates running out on the field). He’s started ever since he’s been here. He came in when I got here. He was in that initial class when I was hired as DC, so we started together. We’ve just got a special relationship, and even in this last several months with the situation with his grandpa we got even closer. He means a lot to our program and he still will no matter what the situation is. The bottom line is, he’s one of our captains and he’s one of our leaders, and it’s definitely going to hurt losing him if that’s the case, but if that is then other guys gotta rise up. This team loves him and he loves this team, and he’ll always be a special part of Indiana.”
“It’s sad to see obviously. He’s just such a hardworking guy. His leadership, his persona that he has, the toughness piece, I think it kinda spread throughout the whole team when we all saw him go off the field.”
“We just rally behind it. It sucks because we know how much he loves this team and how much he’s put into being a leader on this team. It just really hurt, but at that point we’re playing for him, and so this season goes out to him now. When we came in at halftime he was right there in a boot in the locker room yapping everybody up because he knew that it was way bigger than just him.
When he went down it just took things to a whole different level.”
“Coy’s a leader. He’s a senior. Anything he says we listen to it 100 percent and take everything he says to key. We just wanted to play for him after that injury. It was sad seeing him go down but we got the job done and finished it for him.”
“He’s a tough SOB for sure. He’s still going to be our leader. He was supporting us and he’s still going to be there all the time. He’s still going to lead us.”
NEXT MAN UP
DaVondre Love filled in at left tackle when Cronk was injured. The fifth year senior has extensive playing experience over the last three years including the final 11 games of the 2017 season.
True freshman Matthew Bedford saw action as well. Allen indicated that Bedford will likely lose his redshirt as a result of the Cronk injury.
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