Monday, August 15, 2011

IU Quarterback Battle – And Then There Were Three

Adam Follett and Teddy Schell are out as possible starting quarterbacks.

Are you shocked?

Let’s face it. They’re hard workers and nice guys, but they had no chance in this competition.

That means it’s down to redshirt sophomores Edward Wright-Baker and Dusty Kiel, and true freshman Tre Roberson.

Roberson has more dual-threat ability than the other two, but he has a ton to learn as far as learning the Hoosiers’ offense, let alone reading all the opposing defenses set to come. True freshmen can become instant starters at other positions. Quarterback is too tough to do that unless, like Jimmy Clausen at Notre Dame, you graduated high school early, enrolled in college for the second semester and participated in spring practice.

Figure if Roberson does become the starter, it will be several games into the season when he’s had more time to adapt and learn.

As far as who’s ahead between Kiel and Wright-Baker, Wright-Baker appears to have the edge. He showed good accuracy and running ability during Monday night’s open practice. Kiel didn't look as sharp.

Yes, that "open practice" comment was not a typo. Wilson opened the last half of practice for those who attended the final tailgate tour event on the IU campus. Under Wilson, practices are closed to the public at all times. The media can view a few early minutes in selected practices.

Also, does tailback Darius Willis have a future with the Hoosiers? He might if he could ever get healthy, but that hasn’t happened, and maybe never will. Injuries cut short his first two seasons and leave his future prospects uncertain. He missed all of spring practice, and has yet to practice in August camp.

That means junior college transfer Stephen Houston, redshirt freshman Matt Perez, sophomore Nick Turner and true freshman D’Angelo Roberts are vying for the No. 1 tailback spot.

Roberts looked good Monday night. Could he emerge as the starting tailback? Well, he's listed at 5-10 and 187 pounds. It's hard to see him taking the pounding Big Ten backs as the main guy, and that includes blocking, but as part of a rotation, where he gets 10 to 12 touches a game including catching passes, he could be very effective.


Gary Harris keeps impressing people. Now the Hamilton Southeastern basketball standout is up to No. 13 in the latest Class of 2012 Top 100 list. Nobody else in the state of Indiana is ranked higher.

Harris remains a top target of Indiana and coach Tom Crean. Already committed to IU from that class are No. 32 Hanner Perea, No. 33 Yogi Ferrell (he should be ranked higher, but nobody asked us) and No. 37 Jeremy Hollowell. IU’s two other commitments in this class –- Peter Jurkin and Ron Patterson –- didn’t make the top 100.

Remember Mitch McGary? The former Chesterton standout and now prep school standout has moved up to No. 3 in the Class of 2012 behind Shabazz Muhammad and Andre Drummond.


For all Indiana baseball fans, take a deep breath. The new baseball stadium, long promised and never fulfilled, is closing in on reality.


Athletic director Fred Glass will submit a “fully funded” proposal to the IU Board of Trustees on Thursday in Indianapolis. He expects the board to pass it.

IU officials have talked about building a new baseball stadium since Moses parted the Red Sea and …

Sorry. It only seems that long. Former coach Bob Morgan pushed for a new facility for a long time. Current coach Tracy Smith took the job with the promise one would soon be built. It was part of the original $55 million athletic facilities project that was approved in 2006. But the money was used up by renovations to Memorial Stadium and the construction of Cook Hall.

But now the funding for a new baseball stadium, as well as a new softball facility, is in place. The project is likely to cost around $13 million and will be built at Sembower Field, which is Smith’s preference because it's in the middle of campus and surrounded by dorms, so students have easy access. The original proposal had new facilities being constructed near the old state police post near the bypass.


If you care, and even if you don’t, IU women’s volleyball coach Sherry Dunbar has a firm grip on job security. She agreed to a five-year extension that runs through the 2017 season. She enters her fifth season with a career record of 185-83.

The Hoosiers reached the Sweet 16 round last season, the best performance in school history. They beat eventual national champ Penn State.

Dunbar gets a base salary of $141,705.

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