Indiana Hoosiers football
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Indiana promotes ex-Michigan QB Nick Sheridan to OC

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For its new offensive boss, Indiana Hoosiers football didn’t have to look very far.

IU on Friday morning confirmed that Tom Allen has promoted Nick Sheridan to offensive coordinator.  Sheridan will also coach quarterbacks for the Hoosiers in addition to his coordinating duties.

Sheridan replaces Kale DeBoer, who left last month to take the head job at Fresno State.

“Nick is one of the bright, young offensive minds in our game,” the Indiana Hoosiers head football coach said in a statement. “I have the absolute confidence that he is prepared to keep the continuity in our offensive system and allow us to build off of the success we had in 2019.”

Sheridan, who played his college football at Michigan, has spent the past three seasons with the Hoosiers.  He was the tight ends coach in 2019 after coaching quarterbacks the first two years.

Sheridan has also spent time as an offensive graduate assistant at Tennessee (2014-16) and quarterbacks coach/passing-game coordinator at both USF (2013) and Western Kentucky (2012).

“I’m extremely humbled and grateful for this opportunity,” Sheridan said. “Thank you to Coach Allen for his confidence and belief in me. I’m very excited to continue to work with an incredible staff that truly Loves Each Other. Lastly, and most importantly, I want to thank our players for how hard they competed and how well they performed this season. I’m very excited about the future here at IU and thankful to be a part of it.”

Friday Night Lights: Wisconsin and Indiana 2020 opener moved up a day

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Wisconsin and Indiana are 24 hours closer to their first college football game of the 2020 season than previously scheduled. The Badgers and Hoosiers will play their season opener in Madison, Wisconsin on Friday, Sept. 4. The 2020 opener between the two Big Ten schools was originally scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 5.

No TV and official kickoff time have been released yet. Moving up the date of the opener likely will have the game being played on either ESPN, FOX Sports 1 or Big Ten Network. In 2016, the Big Ten announced a plan to begin providing some conference-owned games for Friday nights as part of a new media partnership with FOX and ESPN.

Wisconsin was among the first Big Ten schools to host a Friday night game as part of the new agreement when the Badgers hosted Utah State in its 2017 season opener. Rutgers also hosted Washington the same night. The following week, Purdue hosted Ohio State in Week 2 on a Friday night. Illinois also hosted Nebraska for a Friday nigh conference game in late September 2017.

40-game starter at Indiana enters transfer portal

Coy Cronk
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It’s not often that a starter like Coy Cronk with this much experience enters the NCAA transfer portal, but here we are.

According to HoosierSportsReport.com, Coy Cronk is now listed in the transfer database. Cronk would potentially be leaving Indiana as a graduate transfer, which would give him immediate eligibility at another FBS school in 2020.

If Cronk follows through on the move, it would serve as a significant blow to Indiana’s offensive line in 2020.

A third of the way through this past season, Cronk suffered a lower-leg injury that sidelined him for the remainder of the 2019 campaign.  Prior to that, Cronk had started 40-straight games at left tackle for the Hoosiers.

In 2016, Cronk earned Freshman All-American honors according to multiple media outlets.

Cronk could return to Indiana, it should be noted.  It should also be noted that Cronk could enter the 2020 NFL Draft.

Tennessee storms back to stun Indiana in Gator Bowl

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Tennessee (8-5) overcame a 16-point deficit midway through the fourth quarter to edge Indiana (8-5) in the Gator Bowl Thursday night in Jacksonville. Two touchdowns within 30 seconds of each other pushed the Vols out in front, 23-22, and Indiana’s long field goal attempt to regain the lead in the final minutes fell no good. Jeremy Pruitt won his first bowl game as head coach of the Vols, while Indiana’s bowl win drought drags on for another year.

After sitting out the first half to serve a suspension, Tennessee wide receiver Jauan Jennings entered the game after halftime. Any hope of Jennings providing a spark for the Vols seemingly faded as Jarrett Guarantano was intercepted by Jamar Johnson on Tennessee’s third play of the second half (after Indiana scored a go-ahead touchdown on the first possession of the third quarter). Johnson returned the interception 63 yards for a touchdown, giving Indiana a 16-6 lead after a missed extra point attempt. Jennings ended the game with two receptions for 27 yards.

Tennessee pulled closer with a field goal on the next possession and came closer with a long touchdown drive with Quavis Crouch running form the one-yard line to bring the Vols within six points. Indiana was not prepared for an onside kick, which was recovered easily by Tennessee, and Eric Gray gave the Vols the 23-22 lead with a 16-yard touchdown run up the middle of the Indiana defense.

Tennessee had opportunities to build a big lead in the first half but managed to score just six points on three red-zone trips. Indiana had a turnover on downs and the Vols settled for two field goals on their other trips, allowing Indiana to hang around at halftime. Indiana dominated the third quarter with a 16-3 advantage in the third quarter to take a 19-6 lead into the fourth quarter.

The win by Tennessee improved the SEC to 7-2 this bowl season, easily the best bowl record among all conferences this bowl season. The SEC is 2-1 against the ACC (with LSU facing Clemson in the national championship game), 3-0 against the Big 12 and 2-1 against the Big Ten. The Big Ten closes out its postseason with a 4-5 record with losing records to the SEC and Pac-12 (1-2) and drawing even with the ACC (1-1).

Indiana will open the 2020 season with a Big Ten opener in Madison. The Hoosiers visit reigning Big Ten West Division champion Wisconsin on Sept. 5 to begin the new season. Indiana will host Western Kentucky in their home opener the following week on Sept. 12.

Tennessee will open its 2020 season at home against Charlotte on Sept. 5. The Vols travel to Oklahoma the following week and close out September with a home game against Florida.

Tennessee can’t put Indiana away, leading 6-3 at halftime in Gator Bowl

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For as one-sided as the box score looks at halftime in the Gator Bowl, you would think Tennessee would be sitting in a much more comfortable spot at the break. Such is not the case as the Vols lead Indiana just 6-3 at halftime in the Gator Bowl in Jacksonville.

Tennessee out-gained Indiana 202-69 and forced a turnover by the Hoosiers, but Indiana’s defense has found ways to limit the damage in a big way on defense. Indiana created a turnover on downs at the Indiana two-yard line after the Vols took over with an interception by Shawn Shamburger off Indiana’s Peyton Ramsey. Tennessee was forced to settle for a field goal on their next possession, staling this time at the Indiana six-yard line. A third red-zone trip would once again end with a field goal by Brent Cimaglia on Tennessee’s next possession.

Indiana has rushed the football nine times for a total of six yards. Ramsey has completed eight of 13 passes for 37 yards with an interception. Tennessee’s Jarrett Guarantano has passed for 130 yards. One thing to keep in mind is Tennessee will get wide receiver Jauan Jennings in the second half. Jennings was suspended for the first half of the game due to his sideline incident in the regular seaosn-finale against Vanderbilt.

It certainly feels as though Tennessee is fit to win a defensive battle, but Indiana hanging around could be scary for the Vols.