Hoosiers "Confident" Ahead Of Week Five Contest At Penn State
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- The Indiana Hoosiers faced a "run heavy" team in Georgia Southern last Saturday. They were able to take care of business in a 52-17 win over the Eagles, but now Indiana will prepare for one of the best offenses in the country in Penn State.
Head Coach Tom Allen says compared to when Indiana played Ohio State to start the season, the Hoosiers' have a better understanding of who they are as a football team now five weeks into the season.
"We know where our strengths lie, and that gives you confidence as you move into conference play once again," Allen continued. "You know things about your football team now that you didn't know before."
Injuries are the main area of concern, according to Coach Allen. He says it's that time of the season where it becomes a concern for any football team.
"It's a tremendous challenge. You get to points in the season where you want to be healthy. Sometimes you are and sometimes you're not," Allen says. Other young men have to rise up and play at a level that you expect them to."
Led by running back and Heisman candidate Saquan Barkley in the backfield, the Penn State Nittany Lions are the nation’s fourth best team, says the Associated Press. Tom Allen says Georgia Southern was a good test of the Hoosiers run defense, but admits its comparing "apples to oranges" when comparing the two.
Now that same defense is tasked with containing Barkley, who is tied for seventh overall in rushing compared to other running backs around the country. He's carried the ball 66 times for 518 yards and four touchdowns. Allen says he and Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley are a deadly combination.
"There's not a quarterback-tailback combination in the country right now that is playing at a higher level," Allen added of the two. "They're confident and they're dangerous. He's (Barkley) making runs that are impressive."
Through five weeks, Indiana is 50th best when it comes to total defense allowing an average of 428 yards per game, 196 of which are rushing yards.
Kickoff in State College is at 3:30 pm EDT. You can hear all the action live on 107.5 and 1070 The Fan.
(PHOTO: Icon Sportswire/Getty Images)