BLOOMINGTON – After just one quarter, it was clear that Indiana coach Kevin Wilson has more confidence than ever in the Indiana running game. And by halftime, Hoosiers quarterback Nate Sudfeld had made so many handoffs, it was strange to see him drop back to pass.
Indiana rode Tevin Coleman, who rushed for a career-high 247 yards, and D’Angelo Roberts to a 28-10 home win over Indiana State on Saturday. The IU backfield duo combined for 376 yards and three touchdowns on 47 carries.
Whether the Hoosiers were playing it safe because the field was wet after a rain storm delayed the start of the game 50 minutes, or Wilson used the season-opener against the Football Championship Subdivision Sycamores to not reveal much of the Indiana playbook to opponents, the offensive game plan might have seemed bland on the surface.
Either way, the Hoosiers are off and running.
The run game was going well enough, and we rode that, Wilson said. (Indiana State’s) structure was a little bit softer defending the perimeter, and that gave us a chance to give our backs some creases. I don’t know if I’d call it vanilla.’ It’s just kind of how we started (the season).
After a breakout season a year ago in which he ran for 958 yards and scored 12 touchdowns, Coleman on Saturday asserted himself early. He helped the Hoosiers grab an early hold on the contest by capping off Indiana’s first drive of the game with a 13-yard touchdown run.
After an Eric Heidorn field goal pulled the Sycamores within 7-3, Coleman busted loose on Indiana’s ensuing drive for a 73-yard scamper. At that point, he had already recorded 119 yards on just seven carries.
Me and the O-line just have trust in each other, Coleman said.
When Wilson gave Coleman a break, it was Roberts gashing the Sycamores’ defense. Roberts also surpassed the 100-yard mark, finishing with 129 yards and one touchdown. As a team, Indiana ran the ball 69 for 455 yards and got all four of its scores on the ground.