Mallory briefly discusses shortcomings at ISU, plans for UMass

A few brief comments from Indiana co-defensive coordinator Doug Mallory on IU’s defensive performance in its opener and his hopes for UMass:

On the Indiana State game: “We gave up 117 yards on four runs. If you take that away, then you feel like you maybe kept a pretty good running back fairly well in tact. We misfit on the long counter there. We misfit with a safety. He broke through, we didn’t have a second-level player behind him and a good back exposed us. Then when we get to the end of the half. They’re just trying to run out the clock right there and we don’t have a corner hugging the tight end. We gave them a soft edge and we got exposed there. There are things that I think can be corrected. I think if we fit a little bit better, we’d be in position to make a play.”

On UMass: “We’ve gotta make them one-dimensional. We’ve gotta be able to take away the run. I think our defensive line’s gotta continue to come on and continue to control the line of scrimmage. Those linebackers and those defensive backs, we’ve gotta fit the run game where we’re supposed to fit. Again, they’ve got two quality backs. One’s a transfer from Pitt, the other’s a transfer from Michigan. That’s two good quality backs there. We’ve gotta get after them. Be able to stop there running attack and force them to be one-dimensional.”

On the return of Lawrence Barnett: “I think he’s gonna be right there in the mix competing. We’ve got a couple more bodies back there at the corner spot. We just kind of open up the competition there this week. Every week. We don’t name starters right now. It’s how they produce during the week.”

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  • Jim says:

    tl:dl If you take away all the big plays that FCS team has on us, our D did GREAT!

  • Podunker says:

    Yep, I have to agree, that was a pretty stupid comment by Mallory. No way ISU should have had one back that ran for that many yards. I don’t care if it was Walter Peyton, no back with ISU should not have gained more than 100 yards.

    I’m just not convinced that the co-defensive coordinator thing works. Or, maybe a better way to say it is, I’m not sure the co-defensive coordinators at IU are working out. Too early to tell, but pretty soon we have to see that IU’s defense can stop giving up those huge plays that result from mental mistakes.

  • Wisco says:

    Is he setting expectations by telling us the UMass RBs are from Pitt and Michigan?

  • IsItBasketballSeasonYet says:

    Two quality backs? Really? Those “two quality backs” rushed for 21 yards on 13 carries last week against UConn. FOr anyone keeping score, that’s 1.6 yards/carry. Only 3 total yards rushing for the team. UMass only had 56 yards of total offense, and didn’t take an offensive snap on the other side of the 50 yard line all game. If IU doesn’t steamroll UMass Saturday, we need to switch to the MWC or MAC becuase we clearly don’t belong in the B1G.

  • iufan23 says:

    I don’t think he’s necessarily setting expectations except that for our program right now, there are no easy opponents. I don’t know much about Mass except that this is their first year at this level, but one could make the argument that this is our first year as well! Fact is that while we got a great win last Saturday, we are not a D1 caliber team yet which means that every opponent is going to be a VERY tough opponent. Once again, patience is the order of the day. I’d like to think we can beat Mass, but its going to be tough…young, undermanned team, on the road…tough.

  • Hoosier Clarion says:

    Po, what is not to like about co-coordinators? I see them recruiting better players and performing better on the field even if only after this 1st game. ISU did not score in the last 3rd of the game and their little water bug RB only gained like 40 some yards in the 2nd half. I’d say these co-coordinators made halftime adjustments and they worked to the desired result. Their coaching allowed the D to find a way to hold on to the lead and a way to win. Even Coach Wilson says the D won the game and also stated that would not have happened last year.

  • Podunker says:

    HC, I will agree that IU’s defense showed signs of improvement. But Saturday’s game was evidence that they are still vulnerable to making the mental mistakes that result in HUGE TD plays for the opposing team. That suggests that the players remain confused about their assignments and are not all on the same page. Those mental mistakes result in devastating, momentum shifting plays that can cost a young team essential wins.

    I think you can argue that, in relative terms, IU’s offense is the better prepared and better performing part of the team right now. At least it appeared to me that they were making far fewer mistakes Saturday night. And this early in the season, especially with so many young starters on offense, it is very unusual for a team’s offense to be the better performing group.

    I really hope I’m wrong and that IU’s defense shows enormous improvement this year. But my gut tells me that IU’s defenders are still not all on the same page.

  • iuhoosier1992 says:

    Why doesn’t everyone call Pitt and see if they would take a win with how IU played against a FCS team or their loss versus a FCS team? Or Huston or Penn State. Heck, Iowa got pushed to the limit by a FCS team. We gave Crean more than a year to build it back up, why aren’t we giving Wilson the same courtesy?

  • Dunbar says:

    iuhoosier1992, you clearly have no clue. Iowa did not get pushed to the limit by a FCS team. Northern Illinois is in the MAC, and has won 22 games the last two seasons combined. Slightly different than ISU’s back-to-back 6-5 seasons at the FCS level. And who is not giving Wilson more than a year? Unless he gets lost in McNutt again he will get at least 5 years.

  • TsaoTsuG says:

    Somehow we continue to miss the point. While we demand immediate and significant improvement from our coaches and players, we demand none (actually, this is not a fair and dose not apply to some fans like IUFan23, Davis and HC who do retain a sense of proportion) from our fan base. Much of the culture that had IU so buried in pathetic losing season comes from a fan base that had little understanding of football, the solid leadership that can envision and direct a solid, winning program and the culture that has to surround it.

    We now have a very professional coaching staff that seems to have a very clear idea of the problem, a plan to correct and replace it, the command presence to demand effort and performance from its players, recognizes the need for players who have the ‘potential’ to be winners and the commitment to separate those who don’t; and the will to direct, teach, test and motivate those players towards the common goal of becoming the foundation of a B1G program that respects itself each and every day and game.

    Somehow, however, as it is still evident from some of the posts here, we still have a fan base lacking the knowledge and patching for that missing link may take a while. Hopefully, the staff will forgive and ignore us and follow their instincts while patiently wait for us get ‘a clue’ while they bring us along to the extent we eventually develop a Hoosier football culture and grow and sustain a winning tradition.

    Until then, we really should avoid passing judgment on a staff that within its members likely has more winning seasons than Indiana has had throughout our history (Bill Mallory being the only proud exception). We really should remain quiet, watch and really concern ourselves with developing some humility rather than continue to sound like a bunch of ‘wannabe’ coaches.

    I suggest we leave it to the real ones.

  • Hoosier Clarion says:

    TTG, You’ve touched on the evolution of FB in Indiana and you are right. Well over a half century ago as a boy growing up in Indiana I knew near nothing about FB except the players had hunched up shoulders(as seen on TV). My family moved to Ohio during my pre-teen and very early teen years and I was near force fed FB just as Indiana force feeds BB. When we moved back a few years later and that Fall I enrolled in the HS I graduated from it was their very 1st year of varsity FB. From a FB standpoint I had moved back in time. Boy did I have a leg up on them and became a starter as a Freshman. Fair sized towns and the cities in Indiana were different but I’ll bet every country kid had almost the same lack of knowledge about FB I as I started with.

  • Chet says:

    HC, growing up on the Ohio River, where the first settlements were, was a bit different. Fifty years ago Jeffersonville and New Albany had already been playing each other in a heated rivalry for fifty years.

  • Hoosier Clarion says:

    Chet, point well taken. A farm kid with a basketball can be entertained for hours shooting hoops. Not quite the same enjoyment in throwing or kicking a football by yourself. Ohio schools stated consolidating a decade or 2 before Indiana and that offered enough boy students per class to play FB at recess. My experience was there were times in grade school we did not have enough to play 5 on 5 BB. When we played baseball we had to mix 2 grades to have enough and then maybe have to use an opposing team player to catch for the defense. Consolidation advanced the popular state sport of FB in Ohio. It has done the same in Indiana but in a later timeline.

  • Harvard for Hillbillies says:

    Football was very big in Northwest Indiana during my high school years. I really don’t think basketball received any more attention. There was a wonderful mystique to Friday nights..After school pep rallies with cheerleaders and band along with bonfires to put to flames a straw-stuffed dummy of a rival team’s uniformed player burned in effigy were always the norm. There was always excitement for Friday nights under the lights of Troy Field. Homecoming Queens were crowned during football season and paraded around the track that circled the field during halftimes…And did the flirtatious girls you carried a heavy crush ever look sexier than in the ambiance of a nighttime football game as they strolled through the cool fall air in soft virgin wool sweaters and tight blue jeans?

    Hobart(the ‘Brickies’) was always the team from our conference to be respected…Hobart always had good size..They looked bigger because they were bigger. They hit hard. You were guaranteed an indoctrination into good hitting when going up against the Brickies. Hobart was to our Duneland Conference as OSU is to the Big 10.. If you could stay in a game against Hobart, then there was a sense you could have a great chance to win against anyone on your schedule.

    Drop back a few more decades into the steel city of Gary and football was far more popular than basketball. My dad was an All-State football during his high school days in Gary. Only his decision to enlist in the Navy during WW II prevented him from scholarship offers coming from Purdue and Michigan. The Gary city newspapers must have devoted a lot of space to covering local football teams(as evidenced by a wonderful old scrapbook my father’s sister made for him).

    Maybe it was our proximity to Chicago that made us a bit more equally devoted to the major sports(football, basketball, baseball), but in my humble opinion, it’s a real stretch to claim IU football has been stalled in its progression because of a lack of general interest or some cultural phenomenom. The focus was always put on the back-burner because the appetite for success was being satisfied by a very prominent basketball program. As the banner drought took hold during the latter years of Knight, suddenly pigskin at IU was viewed as a worthwhile investment in resources.

  • Harvard for Hillbillies says:

    Some of my fondest childhood memories were playing football in my backyard with the buddies from my street.

    We devoted equal time indoors to the thrills of electric football or a board game featuring ping pong basketball. Are any of you old enough to remember flicking those spring-loaded controls and lofting the ping pong ball from half-court for a score? Looking back, I wonder how on earth we ever kept ourselves entertained on rainy days without cable TV and XBox games? Every so often you’d walk downtown to a hobby shop and kill a couple hours watching the electric slot cars race around a track..When you wanted real excitement, you’d make a trip to the Aladdin’s Castle arcade at the mall and immerse yourself in pinball, or the latest craze, ‘Space Invaders.’

  • Chet says:

    My entire collection of toys growing up consisted of a basketball, a football, and a handful of toy soldiers. I was under the impression that was all anyone had. My Mom made me put on nice clothes the day the color TV arrived.

  • Hoosier Clarion says:

    Old enough to remember, ha HfH, you are 2-3 decades behind what I was talking about. Sorry for the critique but your Dad would have a better handle on it than you. Population is where FB was/is played and BB was played against a barn with a hoop on it needing a minimum of 1. Please tell me how the 1-12 school I attended as a 4th grader could play organized varsity FB when only averaging 21 pupils per grade? Can anyone say cultural phenomenon? You are not old enough to expound with accuracy.

  • Harvard for Hillbillies says:

    Your experience is not indicative of my own. I grew up in a small town(population approx. 10,000) in Northwest Indiana, but we still had decent enough numbers to field a football team. There were plenty to make it necessary for cuts and competition. My graduation class was around 300 students. We did have a disadvantage against other somewhat larger schools in the conference that were coming out of small city populations probably in excess of 40,000(Michigan City, Portage, Gary, Hobart, LaPorte, Valparaiso). My folks moved from the town limits to the countryside when I was heading into middle school. I soon had to take about a 45 minute bus ride to the middle school I attended in a different township because the township my parents had built their dream home was very sparse(mostly farmers) and only had one elementary school.

    I know all about rural living and spending hours on a basketball court. My closest friends in the country were 6 to 7 miles away. My old man erected my b-ball hoop out of a left over beam from the Pullman train car manufacturing building that was tore down years prior in Michigan City(the majority of the hundreds of other beams used as framework his home designed of his own hand)…add a custom cut sheet of plywood for a backboard, some angular 2″ x 12″ wooden supports cut from fir, rim and net. My hoops heaven sat looking out upon a huge expanse of a beautiful green 10 acre field that served as frontal property our home. No barns. I played into the late hours of summer nights under a the bright glow of street lamp salvaged from the city of Huntington, Indiana. What once lit Main Street in Huntington in the early 1900s became the night lights our property borders and long driveway.

    We had playgrounds and parks in our town. We had two practices a day weeks before classes would begin as we prepared for the opener of our high school football season. We had a practice field and a separate football field with grandstands. We had football at the two middle schools that funneled into one high school. We lived for Friday nights with the fame fervor the winters game on hardwood when the gym would be packed for basketball season. This was over four decades ago in a very small town that hasn’t changed much in population size since. We had a passion for all sports. We even had an Olympic size pool at my tiny high school and regularly sent a half-dozen or so very strong swimmers to the state finals.

    I understand that your experience in a very rural setting is unique, but I still think its not representative of many others that grew up in towns adjacent to populous cities. I grew up in a small town that had to compete against bigger schools. We still had years that we could give them all they asked for for four quarters. Indianapolis, Hammond, Gary, South Bend, Michigan City, Evansville, Connersville, Jeffersonville, Lafayette, Fort Wayne, Muncie…Plenty of populous areas our state to support more than basketball on the side of a barn. I don’t think Oscar Robertson shot jumpers at the family barn in a cornfield.

  • Hoosier Clarion says:

    After scanning your lifes history it is easy to understand why you cannot comprehend what I have described because I predate by 3-4 decades. I too am from NW Indiana. Please tell me about the prowess of the varsity football teams from Hebron, Porter, Boone Grove, Westville, St John, Wanatah, Dyer, Kouts and lets say Wheeler. Please expound I am all ears.

  • Chet says:

    How the generations change. A while back we built our ‘dream house’ (later, with the kids growing up, we decided it was ridiculous and sold it to buy our real dream house, a log cabin). The first thing to go in was a lighted, full court basketball court. It wasn’t regulation length (it was 60 feet) but it was regulation width, at 50 feet. All the lines were painted as were lines for volleyball. It was basked in lights.

    Dear God, what was I doing? Some guy with three fat kids bought it. I hope they ran the weight off.

    On an IU note, we had a reunion of the Willkie Coop there. Volleyball was the game of the hour.

    Now I have what I really always wanted, including a roaring creek 100′ feet from my door stocked with trout by the DNR (damned government intervention). Simple is better.

  • Hoosier Clarion says:

    Chet, I offer this just for shits and giggles. My pond was stocked by me. Pure pleasure as I did not have to cuss the government even once about it.

  • Chet says:

    I wish I fished. It’s like having a Genie and not having any wishes. I am dripping in trout and I’m a Type A guy who can’t give up an hour to stand still.

    It’s my loss.

  • Harvard for Hillbillies says:

    The schools you mention also had basketball teams that had no prowess. There are pimple-sized towns in every state that can’t support football programs. Why is that unique to Indiana? Conversely, there have been plenty of towns and cities throughout the state where football has thrived. I believe a population of 10,000 is still relatively small by most standards. We had football and it was plenty popular. Could we compete against the bigger schools in our conference? Probably not with the same success we could on the hardwood.

    Football has had plenty of support from plenty of small towns to large cities across this state. The dotting of small farming towns doesn’t make for an excuse some cultural regression in Indiana that has kept football lagging behind in Bloomington. IU has dropped the ball because they had a prominent coach that brought huge success the other major sport. The personality and success of Indiana basketball contributed to Bloomington being identified in its likeness. Football didn’t die in Bloomington because it wasn’t being played throughout the state with great passion.

    Not very long ago, a tiny little town in southern Indiana produced a first team All-State selection quarterback that now starts for the Chicago Bears. Hew went to a school that graduated only 200 students(smaller than my Northwest Indiana school 40 years ago). I’m pretty sure he played football in Indiana. Do you believe in Santa Claus? His Class 3-A team defeated Zionsville(a school of over 2000 students) 27-24 in an overtime contest for the 3-A state championship.

  • Hoosier Clarion says:

    You still don’t get it. I’ll waste no more of your time.

  • TsaoTsuG says:

    Indiana is basically a rural state (except for its dotted larger urban areas and some small cities like Anderson, Kokomo, Lafayette, (New Albany and Chetville)…where basketball really was king.

    Hoosier culture of smaller towns (at that time a Bloomington to Indianapolis trip on Old 37 was a tek) was made for the generally isolated life of rural areas. Basketball is 5 v 5. A school with 12 boys could field a team. and can be played and is fun 1 v 1. Football, however required larger concentrations of people and…money. It takes 15 or more players to field a team and do anything resembling the ‘real’ game (I understand there is a 7 v 7 version- I’ve never seen it) so, until consolidation of school districts became the rule the sport could not grow roots in Indiana.

    And, in terms of culture; have you ever tried to play football 1 v 1 or 2 v 2? It can be done (I imagine) but it is nothing like the real game. Another factor, it is an expensive sport each player is carrying about $2000 worth of equipment (even for practice) and the injury and liability insurance alone would make it prohibitive for small school districts.

    I grew up playing soccer in South America (we would play 1 v 1 (or 53 v 51- exaggeration but you get the point) depending on how we chose up sides. Our ‘field’ a dirt street full of hard, sharp rocks (and other matter) that was about 20 yards wide (twice a year the municipality would run its road planer and widen it to 30 yards- we called it ‘world cup time’). We put two empty cans, or piles of clothing on each end as goals, so the field was about 120 yards long and 20 yards wide. Play stopped when a cart pulled by a horse came by (ice man, milk man, junk man…knives sharpener) and we used sticks to move whatever gifts were left by the horse and resumed play. Between all of us we owned…ohhh, about 1 ball. We greased it every night with meat fat to preserve the leather and covered it with an old sweater. No line markings, no posts, no nets, no corner flags. The very first time I coached it here (my kid’s first team), the kids couldn’t understand how we could practice without a full field marked off and the nets hung. So, I had us practice across a field, with a pile of sweaters as the goals.

    Playing it here was never as much fun or as competitive as I remember as a kid. But, though separated by about 7000 miles, it is incredible how the memories of basketball in Indiana are like the memories of a kid chasing after a soccer ball at the bottom of South America on a street where a Lio Messi or Diego Maradona or Pele play their games was exactly like watching alley round ball in Indianapolis or a kid shooting baslets on a drive way near Brownsburg in 1958.

    And the fans…like you guys… the same no matter where they are.

    Go Whoosheers!

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