The Indiana Hoosiers for most of this season were a team that scored — and got scored on — at will. Their last two games coming into yesterday, however, that high-flying offense disappeared as Indiana managed just 17 points combined. Yesterday represented a chance to right the ship and end the season on a high note for the Hoosiers.
Indiana put up 56 points on the Purdue Boilermakers, which was more than enough to win the game despite another subpar defensive performance. To get back on the winning side, the Hoosiers got stellar production from the main cogs of their offense — quarterback Tre Roberson and wide receiver Cody Lattimer — once again.
Roberson threw for 273 yards and six touchdowns on top of running for 154 yards to account for 62 percent of Indiana’s offensive yardage. Lattimer caught seven passes for 110 yards and one of those touchdowns. The Hoosiers did not give the ball away and thanks for their 401 rushing yards held a nine minute time of possession advantage.
On the defensive side, there was little improvement for Indiana. Purdue had one of its best offensive performances of the season against the Hoosier defense. The Boilermakers scored 36 points and amassed 516 yards of offense. Purdue quarterback Danny Etling had the best game of his young career thus far, throwing for 485 yards and four touchdowns.
The defense was the majority of the reason why Indiana failed to get to six wins and become bowl eligible this season, and it should be the foremost concern for head coach Kevin Wilson during the offseason. Still, this team was on the cusp of seven wins. Two of their seven losses came by a touchdown or less.
With the offensive firepower Indiana had, getting to six wins was almost an assumption. Unfortunately the defense was deplorable enough to keep the Hoosiers from achieving that goal. The silver lining is that if the Hoosiers can maintain the level of offensive production and improve on defense they could very easily be a bowl team next season.