Coming off its worst loss of the 2018 season, the Indiana University football program faces another major challenge this Saturday afternoon when Penn State comes to Bloomington. Both programs are in the midst of two game losing streaks, with the Nittany Lions falling out of the top ten in the process.
Below we bring you our favorites from behind enemy lines, including James Franklin’s assessment of IU, a former Indiana commit playing for PSU, how to attack the Hoosiers, and Penn State fans with (unreasonably?) high expectations.
JAMES FRANKLIN BREAKS DOWN INDIANA
A HOMECOMING FOR A FORMER IU COMMIT
Remember the name Tommy Stevens? The Indianapolis native quarterback that at one point had committed to IU before flipping to Penn State has found a new role with the Nittany Lions while he waits out Trace McSorley. He spoke extensively with the media about his new role and going back to the Hoosier State, and 247Sports summarized his comments, including:
“And it’s obviously exciting (going back). We’ll have a lot of people that I graduated high school with, grew up around or people who have just supported me my whole life there. It’s always good to go back home and see family. At the end of the day, it’s just another game, and I have to be ready to play.”
The Penn State 247Sports guys also predicted the score of Saturday’s game. We don’t know who Rob Riva is, but we’ll have what he’s having.
WORKING FROM A DIFFERENT SET OF EXPECTATIONS
Penn State has lost two games in a row (to Ohio State and Michigan State) and the mob is getting restless.
The Altoona Mirror assesses the big picture situation at Penn State, as some are beginning to call for James Franklin’s job.
First and foremost, I can’t help but wonder if what we’ve already seen is really as good as it’s going to get for the Nittany Lions for the foreseeable future. I’m talking about the unexpected rapid rise and magic of the past couple of years, plus the high expectations this season.
After a somewhat scathing critique, sanity returns at the end of the article.
Let’s be clear about one thing with regards to Franklin: He has done an exceptional job making Penn State nationally prominent again so quickly, and if you think he should be fired, then you have serious issues as a sports fan.
Franklin took over at PSU in 2014. He has taken them from a team that was blown out at IU in 2013 to winning the Big Ten in 2016 and then went to the Fiesta Bowl last year. Yes, yes I’ll try that.
THE KEYS TO BEATING INDIANA
A disturbing trend has emerged over the last two weeks as IU has allowed six touchdown passes to each of Ohio State and Iowa. Now Trace McSorley is coming to town, and The Centre Daily Times believes he could be in line for a big day —
If the Nittany Lions are going to pick apart this defense, the bigger opportunity here is definitely through the air. Only two teams — UConn and Rice — have allowed more passing touchdowns than Indiana (18). Against Iowa last week, Indiana lost big in a 42-16 shellacking after Hawkeyes QB Nate Stanley passed for 320 yards and racked up the second-most touchdown passes in school history with six.
The Penn State offense has stagnated somewhat in recent weeks. After scoring 222 points in their first four games, the Nittany Lions have produced just 43 in the last two. Is IU’s slumping defense just what the doctor ordered?
SOMETHING DIFFERENT — BROTHERLY LOVE?
Would you donate a kidney? Would you donate one to a Purdue fan? Okay, hopefully team allegiances wouldn’t factor into your decision. They didn’t impact the thinking of an Ohio State fan helping out a Penn State season ticket holder.
PennLive tells the story.
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