When: September 21st, 2019, 12:00 EST
Where: Bloomington, IN
How to watch: Big Ten Network
That’s been the theme for Indiana throughout the week, flush the dreadful performance from last weekend that saw the Hoosiers exit Memorial Stadium to the tune of a 51-10 beatdown at the hands of the Buckeyes.
“Don’t let Ohio State beat us twice,” senior offensive tackle Coy Cronk said.
Indiana will now be forced to set their sights on the visiting Connecticut Huskies, who sit at 1-1 on the season following a loss to Illinois this past weekend.
One of the big changes for UConn this weekend will be the change at quarterback, with true freshmen Jack Zergiotis set to take the reins. Hailing from Quebec, Canada, Zergiotis made his college football debut last week against Illinois, completing 21-of-31 passing attempts for 275 yards and two interceptions.
UConn head coach Randy Edsall saw the potential in Zergiotis, and quickly decided to name him the starting quarterback for the remainder of the season.
“There’s something about that young man,” Edsall said of Zergiotis. “He kind of has a little bit of the it factor.”
The defensive improvement for UConn also deserves its fair share of praise and is one of the big catalysts for hope moving forward for the Huskies.
There’s no way around it, the UConn defense last season was atrocious, giving up over 500 yards per game including nearly seven yards per player on the season. Yet those defensive woes have mostly disappeared so far this season, with the Huskies limiting opposing offenses to just 271 yards per game through their first two games.
Most importantly, the UConn run defense has been respectable through the early season, allowing 116 yards per game on the ground, good for 46th in the country.
Indiana’s struggles to run the ball have been well documented, racking up just over 101 yards per game on the ground, putting them at 117th in the country nationally. Getting the run game going, specifically sophomore running back Stevie Scott, will be one of the major keys moving forward for the Hoosiers.
As disappointing as last week’s performance was, that was a game almost no one expected Indiana to win. Yet a loss to UConn would likely kill any hope of a successful season for the Hoosiers, so Indiana cannot afford to come out flat against the Huskies.
“I’m looking forward to seeing us respond in the right way,” head coach Tom Allen said
As long as the Hoosiers respond the way Allen hopes, they should have no trouble taking care of the Huskies come Saturday afternoon.