Indiana Football – Kevin Wilson Knows and Respects Wisconsin Plenty

by Kent Sterling

UnknownListening to Indiana University Football Coach Kevin Wilson talk about the Wisconsin Badgers today gave the impression that his next opponent is right where he would like the Hoosiers to be one day.

The Badgers are consistent, well-drilled, mature, and deep.  They are everything Indiana aspires to be, and Wilson knows that winning a game this Saturday at Camp Randall Stadium is going to require the kind of disciplined effort they have been unable to muster yet in his three seasons in Bloomington.

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Of course, Wison is right.  Beating Wisconsin is a long shot, but progress in Bloomington is not yet measured in beating a team against whom the Hoosiers are winless since 2002.

Indiana fans remember the day that three years ago that Bill Lynch took the Hoosiers to Madison and suffered an 83-20 ass-whooping that sealed the fate of coach Bill Lynch.  Lynch might have been fired regardless of that game, but there was no chance for survival after allowing anyone to score 83 m***********g points against his team.

So it could be said that Wisconsin’s excellence is responsible for Wilson being in Bloomington, and his ability to build a program similar to Wisconsin will determine how long he stays.  If he is able to mirror Barry Alvarez, Bret Bielema, and now Gary Anderson, it’s unlikely Indiana will be able to keep the third year coach.  If he can’t compete, Indiana will look elsewhere for someone who can.

Indiana boosters and students understand that regularly beating Ohio State and Michigan is a long shot.  Those programs have a 70-year start on Indiana, and states filled with kids who dream of one day being Buckeyes and Wolverines.  There are no kids in Indiana currently dreaming of wearing the Cream and Crimson.

But Indiana should be able to recruit against Wisconsin and build a program its equal.  There is nothing but dogma separating the two programs – the belief that Wisconsin is better is strong today, but nothing prevents the Hoosiers from eliminating that over the next three years.  Facilities and climate both favor the Hoosiers, and education is mostly equal.

Wilson knows this Saturday’s game will be a tough test, but in the video, there is not just a clinical respect for Wisconsin, but an eagerness to face the test.

6 thoughts on “Indiana Football – Kevin Wilson Knows and Respects Wisconsin Plenty

  1. Bill

    Not sure what you mean that these programs have 70 years on Indiana football. Indiana’s first season was 1887. The first college football game was played in 1869.

    Michigan’s first season was 1879, but Ohio State’s was 1890. That means IU has actually been playing football longer than Ohio State has.

    As for no one wanting to play for them in state, I think the recent signings of Indianapolis players demonstrate that in-state players do want to go to Bloomington.

    1. kentsterling Post author

      Seventy years of excellence compared to 70 years of non-excellence – not of existence.

      If you know of a nine-year old in Indianapolis who has an IU football poster on his bedroom wall, I would like to see it. The quality of the kids Indiana successfully recruits is getting better, but it’s not a childhood dream to go to IU for (m)any.

        1. kentsterling Post author

          Yes, words mean things, and the head start that Ohio State and Michigan have in building a culture of excellence is actually 68 years. Next time I’ll try to be more specific.

  2. Ray Jordan

    There have been bright spots in Indiana Football such as Bo McMillin who coached Indiana to a Big Ten Championship in 1945 ( John Pont was another coach who took Indiana to the Rose Bowl in 1967 ( Indiana has been a tough nut to crack over the years for most coaches. Somehow I.U. has established a poor tradition over the years and consequently have difficulty recruiting good players. It’s also possible that the university was unwilling to pay good money for good coaches. Bob Knight was only getting $175,000 a year when they fired him and he was an excellent coach. Other coaches around the country at the time were getting a million dollars plus. This Athletic Director has shown that he’s willing to pay for good coaching. Will it help the football program? Time will tell.


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