Eastern Illinois was always going to be somewhat of a unique test for the Hoosiers.
Playing an FCS team at home, one that was coming off a 3-8 season last year, was a game where Indiana was expected to dominate. Anything less would only continue to raise red flags for the Hoosiers, who were seeking to show last week’s dogfight with Ball State was more of a fluke than the norm.
And dominate they did.
Indiana left week two with a resounding 52-0 victory over Eastern Illinois, the largest margin of victory in Memorial Stadium in Indiana football history and helped to alleviate some of the concerns that propped up last week. The Hoosiers controlled this game in every conceivable way, racking up 555 yards of total offense compared to just 116 yards allowed by the Indiana defense. The Panthers crossed into Indiana territory just two times throughout the afternoon.
Yet despite their dominant showing, the Hoosiers know what awaits them next week, when Ohio State comes to town for perhaps the biggest test Indiana will face all season long.
“This was something like a test to see what our offense was made of, but the real test is next week,” IU wide receiver Donavan Hale said after the EIU game.
The Buckeyes are coming off a dominant 42-0 victory over a good Cincinnati team and the switch from Urban Meyer to Ryan Day at head coach hasn’t slowed down Ohio State, at least up to this point.
Indiana saw the improvement against Eastern Illinois that they wanted to see but translating that into success against the Buckeyes will be a hard task for the Hoosiers. The Hoosiers are confident, but they’ll need more than confidence to pull off the upset next week.
“We came (to Indiana) to beat teams like Ohio State,” Whop Philyor said. “We didn’t come here to play them; we came here to beat them.”