A preview of Nebraska's next opponent as published in The World-Herald on Oct. 13.
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Overall record: 3-2
Big Ten: 1-1 (T-4th East)
Offensive yards per play: 6.2 (43rd)
Defensive yards per play: 5.18 (39th)
Turnover margin: 0.00 (T-56th)
Penalty yards per game: 65.4 (97th)
Sagarin strength of schedule: 60th
Kevin Wilson (23-43 at Indiana)
Wilson continues to make headway in his sixth season at Indiana, lasting longer than any Hoosier coach since Bill Mallory held the job from 1984 to ’96. The highlights so far have been a 3-5 Big Ten record in 2013 and a bowl trip a year ago, but Wilson had his contract extended last winter through 2021. Wilson put himself on the head coaching radar with his work under Bob Stoops at Oklahoma, where he won the Frank Broyles Award in 2008 as the nation’s top assistant coach. That Sooner team averaged better than 50 points a game and scored 60-plus in an NCAA-record five straight.
Type: Spread, no-huddle
Coordinator: Kevin Johns
The offense has set 54 school records under Johns and Wilson and led the Big Ten in passing in 2012, ’13 and ’15. Indiana has turned to junior-college transfer Richard Lagow at quarterback to replace sixth-round NFL draft pick Nate Sudfeld, and Lagow already has thrown for 1,460 yards and 11 touchdowns. Indiana also will run the ball with success, ranking No. 26 nationally at 210.5 yards per game in 2015 and No. 10 at 263.6 in 2014. Junior tailback Devine Redding is on pace for a second straight 1,000-yard season.
Coordinator: Tom Allen
It can be a thankless job to be counterpart to the Hoosiers’ up-tempo offensive attack, but Indiana is trying to change its reputation after being no better than No. 95 nationally in total defense any of the past five seasons. The Hoosiers are fifth in the Big Ten in pass efficiency defense, with almost as many interceptions (five) as touchdowns allowed (six). Indiana gets no break with Nebraska after playing at Ohio State last week, but the Hoosiers limited the Buckeyes to 383 total yards, forced two turnovers and were tough on third down (5 of 14).
PLAYER TO WATCH
Receiver Nick Westbrook
The sophomore has been one of the most explosive players in the Big Ten and already has a pair of two-touchdown games. Westbrook had 15 receptions in the first three games, and now 20 for the season, and his 21.9 yards per catch ranks No. 11 nationally. The 6-foot-3, 210-pound receiver from Lake Mary, Florida, is coming on strong after playing in all 13 games a year ago but catching just six passes as a freshman.
THEY SAID IT
“They fought them for 60 minutes, and it felt like we didn’t execute at some critical times that cost us. But when you take a step back and look at where we’re at, it’s encouraging.”
— Allen, reflecting on the Ohio State game
“They are a Nebraska defense. They’re big, fast and play with a bunch of pride. This will be a great challenge, and we look forward to an opportunity to redeem ourselves. They’ll get our best shot.”
— Indiana offensive lineman Jacob Bailey
“There’s a lot of thought and creativity behind what they’re doing, and that’s why they’ve had production for a while.”
— Nebraska coach Mike Riley on the Indiana offense
44.4: Percentage of times the Indiana offense has netted a touchdown out of a red-zone opportunity (8 of 18). Only six FBS teams have been less effective.
15.7: Yards per completion by quarterback Richard Lagow, which leads the Big Ten and ranks No. 6 nationally.
93: Ohio State passing yards Saturday vs. Indiana after the Buckeyes had been averaging 244.2 a game. It was the first time since 2012 that the Hoosiers held a Big Ten opponent under 100 yards passing.
Sept. 1, FIU, W 34-13
Sept. 10, Ball State, W 30-20
Sept. 24, Wake Forest, L 28-33
Oct. 1, Michigan St., W 24-21 OT
Oct. 8, Ohio State, L 17-38
Oct. 15, Nebraska
Oct. 22, at Northwestern
Oct. 29, Maryland
Nov. 5, at Rutgers
Nov. 12, Penn State
Nov. 19, at Michigan
Nov. 26, Purdue