Indiana Passing Offense

Submitted by biabia on October 3rd, 2010 at 3:29 PM

Could Indiana be the best passing offense we play in the Big 10?


Zone Left

October 3rd, 2010 at 4:29 PM ^

Agreed, Notre Dame and MSU are likely better.  However, Indiana is probably the only team that will try to throw 60+ times in a game.  MSU is going to try to maintain its balance next week, which might be really scary for Michigan or might work in Michigan's favor.


October 3rd, 2010 at 3:45 PM ^

statistically, yes, but talent wise I am not sure. I think if they are not the best then they deserve to be included as one of the best. Their run game is weak so when they face a quality defensive backfield then they will be put in their place a little more so than this weekend.


October 3rd, 2010 at 3:47 PM ^

Indiana does have a prolific passing offense, but they are able to be stopped.  We were able to get some pressure and force some bad throws with mostly a 3 man rush.  Their offensive line is not good.  But, if not Indiana, then who?

Iowa, Michigan State, and Ohio State have consistent offensive passing games, but prolific is not the first word that come to mind when I think of any Big Ten offense.


October 3rd, 2010 at 3:53 PM ^

Pryor went 9/16 for 76 yards against Illinois.  Illinois.  The backup got two throws.  One picked up a single yard and the second one he threw to the other team. 

State and Iowa with a consistent Stanzi (but when does that ever happen) are the only teams on the schedule that can come close to throwing like IU.


October 3rd, 2010 at 6:48 PM ^

All this means is that IU is better at throwing the ball than Penn State (true freshman QB), Illinois (true freshman QB who can't throw a football), Wisconsin (even if they could throw it, they would run iso out of an unbalanced formation with 8 tight ends who are really tackles, AKA, the Jim Harbaugh offense), Ohio State (dumbass Pryor), and Purdue (who will be playing their sixth string QB after their fifth string QB dies of some disease that no one in history has ever had except for Purdue's fifth string QB, seriously, at this rate that is probably going to happen).


October 3rd, 2010 at 7:37 PM ^

It's hard to have a much more effective pass game than IU had against us. Even without a running game they could pass on us. I think teams that run more will give us a better chance to stop them, because we actually have a chance against the run.


October 3rd, 2010 at 3:49 PM ^

But they are the only team that is going to line up with 4-5 receivers on just about every snap and throw it 60+ times against us (Purdue may try, but they kind of suck).  Their offense forced our young and/or not-that-great corners into a bunch of one-on-one matchups.  I doubt any other quality team on our schedule will abandon the run and attempt to do the same thing.


October 4th, 2010 at 11:12 AM ^

The fact that IU is pass-first and lines up 4-5 wide is what really hurt the Defense.  I don't think the other good offenses we face will line up this way.  

It would seem that a defense could contain a pass-first offense rather easily knowing that the bulk of their plays will be a pass.  However, with so many receivers (and youth in our secondary) even though you "know" they will pass doesn't mean you can stop it.  

With the other O's we will face, i think our D Line will be able to contain the run threat and the extra players in the backfield - RB/FB/TE.  Our secondary should be able to handle (minimize the damage;  bend not break) coverage of 2-3 wide receivers.

How many of the upcoming teams are capable of spreading the field that much?  OSU can, who else? 


October 3rd, 2010 at 3:52 PM ^

I think you could make a case that Michigan St. has a better passing offense than Indiana, let alone Iowa or Ohio State. I honestly did not even think Chappell was that great yesterday--and yet he still through for almost 500 yards against us. Chappell missed a bunch of throws that were wide open and consistently forced his receivers to make difficult catches on routine throws.    


October 3rd, 2010 at 4:07 PM ^

Doesn't the second half of my response answer why? In short, I think that Chappell's day yesterday says much more about our defensive woes than it does about the skill level of Chappell. I think that we will play against better quarterbacks in upcoming games who have much better skill players on the outside, specifically much faster skill players. Indiana did not even test us vertically that much, I expect that to change in the coming games as well.


October 3rd, 2010 at 4:19 PM ^

There is one very large reason Indiana, as well as pretty much every team we play this year, will fail to test us deep. Not only does the defense we play force opposing offenses to dink and dunk their way down field, but this will also help neutralize the much more athletic WRs we will be facing. Chappelle did exactly what we allowed him to do so we didn't get beat deep. You seem to have missed that in your expert analysis.


October 3rd, 2010 at 4:34 PM ^

Actually, I agree with you. Chappell took exactly what our defense gave him. But teams like MSU, Iowa and OSU with feature much better run games, and thus will probably test us deep on play action--since our corners will be forced to step up in the run game. By the way, this is just one man's opinion. I think we all have the right to disagree with each other. With this in mind, I do not really understand the hostility implied in your last statement. 


October 3rd, 2010 at 3:54 PM ^

I don't know about the best offense, but like someone else mentioned no other team will throw it 65 times.  Most teams won't even throw half that many attempts


October 3rd, 2010 at 3:55 PM ^

It's hard to say.  They will likely be one of the best, however I'm sure you will see almost all teams have plenty of ease throwing a bunch of 6-7 yard dink and dunks against our soft zone.

I will go out on a limb and say that Doss is likely going to have the best performance of a receiver against us all year.  He was simply unstoppable.

Blue boy johnson

October 3rd, 2010 at 4:04 PM ^

IMHO too much emphasis is put on stats and what not. Team A is the best at X, team B is strong at Y, which is all well and good, but what is really important is making plays and making plays when the game is hanging in the balance. M has playmakers.

IU fans can recite stats from yesterdays game and make the case as to why they should have won. ND fans made their case a few weeks ago. I hope MSU is lamenting the stat sheet next week.

Playmakers, that's the ticket, and M has playmakers, one an incredible playmaker, that is what will get them wins 6,7,8


October 3rd, 2010 at 4:05 PM ^

We are lucky in the fact that the B10 will not be particularly good at passing this year.  We don't have to face the best passing attack, Northwestern, and the ones we do  just aren't that great.  Pryor is still not a good passer, Bolden is a true freshman, and Steelhausenfrogensteiner at Illinois is the same.  I'm a bit concerned about Cousins, Tolzien, and Stanzi, however, as they can be quite good at times.  Particularly Cousins strikes me as someone who could do damage to our secondary.


October 3rd, 2010 at 4:10 PM ^

As others have noted, we'll know more after IU plays OSU next week.  But I do think that they have the most dangerous passing attack in the Big 10 - Doss is a beast, and Belcher is very dangerous and a huge target.  And while Chappell probably won't be playing on Sunday, he is a 5th-year senior who has been in that offense for a couple of years. 

OSU may have more talent at the WR position but Pryor seems lost out there at times.  Stanzi is a great American, but there is a reason the terms "Stanziball" and "Stanzi'd" exist.  As for MSU, their running game is so dangerous that it creates mismatches for the WRs who are very dangerous (especially if you are an engineering student), but Cousins has shown a proclivity to throw the ball into coverage when pressured.  I still think he is one of the better QBs in the Big 10, but he doesn't look completely comfortable back there.  


October 3rd, 2010 at 9:17 PM ^

He just seemed to be a good college QB but his arm strength didn't jump out to me and in that offense, a good QB is going to put up massive numbers.  I'm not saying he won't be drafted, but I have my doubts that he'll be a consistent starteer in the NFL.  That said, he certainly is very prolific.  I just see him as being another Joey Elliott - good stats, but probably a backup at the next level at best. 


October 3rd, 2010 at 4:36 PM ^

Caveats apply about schedule so far.  Even so, six teams are in the top 40 in both yards/game and passing efficiency.  IU and Northwestern would seem to be the biggest threats for "best of" title so far with U of M and MSU in stalking distance.

Yards/game (Nat rank): IU 348(4), NDame 293(17), Nwest 278(23), Iowa 254(30), Minny 241(36), U of M 241(38), MSU 240(39), OSU 229(54), PSU 217(68), Wisky 207(71), Purdue 186(86), Illinois 131(113)

Rating (Nat rank) Nwest 181.3(3) U of M 181.3(4), Iowa 173.9(6), MSU 166.1(12), IU 161.3(14), OSU 159.3(15), Wisky 158.2(16), Minny 148.6(27), NDame 123.7(77), Purdue 112.2(101), PSU 111.9(102), Illinois 103.3(111).


October 3rd, 2010 at 5:14 PM ^

I don't think there is any other QB in the conference who could do what he did yesterday - make a ton of plays and only one big mistake when you knew that he'd be throwing on almost every play.  Pryor is a more dangerous player overall, but Chappell is the best passer in the Big 10 IMO, though he lacks the weapons that others have around him. 


October 3rd, 2010 at 5:42 PM ^

Most of the teams we play haven't changed much from last year, so I thought the best way to approach the question is to do a comparison.


ND:  490 Yards Against, 336 passing, 150 rushing

IU:  467 Yards Against, 270 passing, 197 rushing

MSU:  417 Yards Against, 220 passing, 197 rushing

Iowa:  367 Yards Against, 284 passing, 83 rushing

PSU:  396 Yards Against, 230 passing, 166 rushing

IL:  500 Yards Against, 123 passing, 377 rushing

Purdue:  494 Yards Against, 367 passing, 127 rushing

WI:  469 Yards Against, 240 passing, 229 rushing

OSU:  318 Yards Against, 67 passing, 251 rushing


ND:  535 Yards Against, 381 passing, 154 rushing

IU:  568 Yards Against, 480 passing, 88 rushing

There really doesn't seem to be much of a difference.  However, the outcome of four close games last year (MSU, Iowa, IL and Purdue), would probably have been different if we had this year's Denard.  Given PSU's drop off, 3-4 victories against those teams, with prolific offense, would mean a 3-4 loss season, which would be respectable. 


October 3rd, 2010 at 5:47 PM ^

Does anyone know why we didn't rush 4?  They obviously weren't going for the run and wouldn't it be better if we could have gotten some people in Chappell's face?

Dan TrueBlue

October 4th, 2010 at 11:07 AM ^

First you have to throw out any statistics that are affected by things like TOP and number of attempts.  Looking at what's left: They have the highest pass completion percentage of anyone we'll face (Dan Persa's is higher but we don't play NU).  But MSU, Wiscy, and Iowa all have higher yards-per-pass.


October 4th, 2010 at 11:37 AM ^

I have never been that impressed with Pryor. Maybe Stanzi, but other than that, I think Chappell is the best, and I actually think he has a reasonable chance to make it in the NFL. I think that Michigan's defense will actually do better against most of the Big 10 teams we face this year.