Coach Mal Talks Hoosier Football
Aug. 31, 2007
Former Indiana head coach Bill Mallory has been a regular at Indiana practices this preseason. Mallory, who led the Hoosiers to six bowl games between 1986-93, sat down with IUHoosiers.com to break down the team and what he likes about the 2007 Hoosiers.
On Indiana's preseason camp: "I had a chance to be out and catch a few practices and I thought the players have worked very hard. You just see a good maturity about them with a lot of returnees from last year. You see a good work ethic and I think they are focused on what they have to do. You see a real good improvement over last year; at least that's my observation. They just seem quicker and sure of themselves and what they are doing. From what I have seen when I have been out here, they have had quality practices and are making good headway."
On the offense: "I really like (Kellen) Lewis. I think he is, without question, a difference-maker. You could see that last year. But you can see such a difference in him after a year of experience, after coming on as a starter last year. You can see him taking his play to another level and he is an impact player."
"I also think it is the best receiving corps that I have ever seen here. We have had some real good receivers over the years, but I have never seen a better corps. With Lewis and the receivers, the offense is going to be very effective."
"The running game has to come on, and there isn't any reason why it can't. Last year it wasn't near where they wanted, but this year they are putting more emphasis on it. This year they have more experience, more seasoning there."
"The offensive line is still young. They went with two freshmen last year, but they have a year under their belt. There isn't any reason why the offensive line shouldn't be better. So the offense should definitely be improved, they have playmakers."
On the defense:
"The defense should be better, without question. I think they have got people up front with more experience. It looks to me like they have some depth there, where they can interchange people. I think that is good with that front four, when you have eight or more players that they can rotate in there. I think that helps keep the players fresh and there is no reason why it can't be a decent, solid front line.
"I like the linebacking corps. They are big and strong and very active. They should be a very good linebacking group.
"I know they have lost some safeties, but I know they have got some people back there to give them a good, quality secondary."
On head coach Bill Lynch: "With the tragedy of Terry Hoeppner, we are very blessed to have Bill here. I'll never forget when I stopped in to see Terry when he was putting his staff together and getting things in order. He said `I just got my first blue chip today.' I thought what player that would be and he said I just hired Bill Lynch. Bill was with me two years and he's an outstanding coach. We are very fortunate to have Bill to continue the vision that Terry had here. He is very, very capable. He has the head coaching experience and has succeeded everywhere he has been. There is nobody that is more respected by the high school coaches in this state than Bill Lynch. I assure you the program is in good hands. They have been able to keep the staff together and stability in the program and I think that is important. With that, I think they will be able to go on and make this a successful season."
On what he has to say to the Hoosier fans: "I really hope we can get people in the stands with a lot of excitement. That means an awful lot when the team walks out and can see the stadium full with a lot of energy. I know when we had that kind of attendance it had a great impact. That was kind of like the 12th man. I think they will come out and rally around this team and I know it will have an impact on the success of this team."
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