Saturday, October 10, 2020, SHI Stadium, Piscataway, New Jersey, 3:30 p.m. ET
Hoosiers at Scarlet Knights Betting Preview: Hoosiers (-12), Scarlet Knights (+12)
The No. 17 Hoosiers jumped to their highest ranking since the 1993 season with their scintillating 36-35 overtime victory over Penn State, but now must look to build on momentum that victory created.
“We have to be very focused,” coach Tom Allen said. “We have to be very laser-like in our intentions.”
Coming up with three turnovers helped the Hoosiers overcome a huge deficit in yardage (Penn State had 488 yards, Indiana only 211). Quarterback Michael Penix was a so-so 19 of 36 passing for only 170 yards, but he scored on a 2-point conversion after scoring a touchdown from a yard out with 22 seconds left to send the game to overtime, then threw a touchdown pass in overtime before diving in for the 2-point conversion to win it.
With Penn State at No. 8 entering the game, it was the highest ranked opponent the Hoosiers have beaten since a win over No. 3 Purdue in 1967 in a game that sent them to the Rose Bowl that season.
“It has been crazy, I can confirm that, but a good kind of crazy,” Allen said of the aftermath from the Penn State win. “It has been hard to sleep, for good reasons. My mind was just racing. My phone was blowing up with a lot of people reaching out congratulating us.”
The Hoosiers do have veteran players returning at skill positions on offense, including running back Stevie Scott III and wide receiver Whop Philyor. Philyor had only 36 yards on five receptions, but one catch came for a touchdown in the overtime. Scott rushed for 57 yards on 20 carries against the Nittany Lions.
Rutgers Scarlet Knights
It wasn’t as dramatic or eye-catching as Indiana’s win over Penn State, but their 38-27 dominance of Michigan State was big for the Scarlet Knights (1-0, 1-0 Big Ten). The Knights forced seven Spartan turnovers to help coach Greg Schiano get a win in the first game of his second stint at Rutgers.
Now, however, Schiano is taking an approach similar to Allen’s looking to Saturday.
“It’s all eyes on Indiana,” Schiano said. “As I tell them, the world will lie to you both in the good times and the bad, and you need to just stay on the process.”
Schiano’s roster at Rutgers features 10 transfers including several who made significant impacts in the opener.
Nebraska grad transfer Noah Vedral completed 18 of 29 passes for 169 yards, with one touchdown and one interception against Michigan State. He also rushed for a touchdown. Defensively, former Michigan Wolverines defensive tackle Michael Dwumfour made six tackles, including 1.5 for loss, in his Rutgers debut.
The win over the Spartans snapped the Knights’ losing streak in conference play at 21 games. They now look to end a string of defeats by Top 25 teams that has reached 28 games dating back to 2009.
Hoosiers at Scarlet Knights Betting Pick for October 31, 2020
Both teams are coming off surprising wins so the question will be which can handle success. The Hoosiers didn’t show much on offense until their final two series in the 36-35 win over Penn State. Rutgers was a little better, matching Indiana’s in passing with 170 yards while rushing for 106 to Indiana’s 41 yards in the 38-27 win at Michigan State.
Hoosiers at Scarlet Knights Betting Pick:
Hoosiers 31, Scarlet Knights 24
Hoosiers at Scarlet Knights Best Bet for October 31, 2020
Both teams look somewhat vulnerable on defense. The Scarlet Knights held Michigan State to 369 yards while the Hoosiers allowed a whopping 488 to Penn State in their overtime win. Penix makes the difference for IU.
Hoosiers at Scarlet Knights Best Bet: OVER 52.5