Hoosiers Host Northwestern on 99th Homecoming

    Go Hoosiers! Indiana hosts Northwestern on its 99th Homecoming.
    Go Hoosiers!
    Indiana hosts Northwestern on its 99th Homecoming.
    Go Hoosiers!

    Oct. 24, 2011

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    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - The Indiana football team (1-7, 0-4 Big Ten) welcomes the Northwestern Wildcats (2-5, 0-4 Big Ten) for IU's 99th Homecoming on Saturday, Oct. 29. Kickoff is set for noon EDT at Memorial Stadium (52,929; FieldTurf) and the BTN will broadcast the game.

    The Hawkeyes defeated Northwestern, 41-31, on Saturday to even their Big Ten record at 1-1 following a 13-3 loss at Penn State. Iowa posted a 3-1 mark in non-conference play.

    Tom Hart (play-by-play), Derek Rackley (analyst) and Lisa Byington (sideline) will call the game. The game can also be heard on the statewide IU Radio Network, Sirius 94 and XM 195 with Don Fischer (play-by-play), Buck Suhr (analyst) and Joe Smith (pre-game, halftime and post-game) on the call.

    Setting The Scene
    • The Hoosiers own a 44-48-6 record on Homecoming, including wins in six of the last seven seasons. • Indiana holds an 8-7 record against Northwestern on Homecoming. • The last time the teams met on Homecoming, IU knocked off No. 22 (BCS) NU, 21-19, on Oct. 25, 2008. • Northwestern fell to Penn State, 34-24, last weekend in Evanston. The Wildcats are 0-2 in Big Ten road games and 0-4 overall in league play after posting a 2-1 mark through their first three non-conference games.

    The Coaches
    Kevin Wilson earned his first victory as Indiana head coach vs. South Carolina State. Wilson spent the 2002-10 seasons at Oklahoma, where he served as co-offensive coordinator and offensive line coach from 2002-05 and as offensive coordinator and tight ends and fullbacks coach from 2006-10. OU played in seven Big 12 Title games in Wilson's nine years, going 6-1 in those appearances. His offenses were vital to accumulating an overall record of 99-24 (.805) during his time in Norman, including seven 10-win seasons. • Pat Fitzgerald is in his sixth season at the helm of the Northwestern program and owns a 36-34 (.514) record. Fitzgerald starred at linebacker for the Wildcats (1993-96) and has guided NU to three straight bowl games.

    News & Notes
    • Indiana head coach Kevin Wilson was Northwestern's offensive coordinator from 1999-2001.
    • Hoosiers co-offensive coordinator Kevin Johns served two stints with the Wildcats (1999-2001, 2004-10).
    • NU wide receivers coach Dennis Springer spent the 2008-10 seasons on IU's coaching staff.
    • Northwestern leads the all-time series, 44-34-1. The series is tied, 18-18, in Bloomington.
    • The last seven games between the two teams have been decided by seven points or less and a combined 26 points with two of those games extending into overtime.
    • True freshmen quarterback Tre Roberson and cornerback Michael Hunter made their first career starts at Iowa. Indiana has started nine true freshmen and played 16 overall, which is tied for the third most nationally.
    • Roberson became the first true freshman quarterback in IU history to start and completed 16-of-24 for 197 yards with his first career TD pass and zero interceptions. He also rushed for 84 yards on 16 carries (5.2 average).
    • The Indianapolis native became the third Hoosier to earn Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors this season.
    • IU rushed for 200-plus yards against Big Ten opponents in back-to-back weeks for the first time since 2001.

    Hoosiers On Homecoming
    Indiana owns a 44-48-6 record on Homecoming, including wins in six of the last seven seasons. Last year, the Hoosiers downed Arkansas State, 36-34. IU defeated Illinois, 27-14, in 2009 and knocked off 22nd-ranked (BCS) Northwestern, 21-19, in 2008 after coming up just short vs. Penn State, 36-31, in 2007. Prior to 2007, Indiana reeled off three straight victories against Michigan State (46-21 in 2006), Illinois (36-13 in 2005) and No. 24 (AP) Minnesota (30-21 in 2004).

    The Northwestern Series
    Northwestern leads the all-time series, 44-34-1, and the teams have split 36 meetings in Bloomington. The last seven contests have been decided by a combined 26 points:
    • 2010: NU, 20-17, on Oct. 30 in Bloomington
    • 2009: NU, 29-28, on Oct. 24 in Evanston
    • 2008: IU, 21-19, on Oct. 25 in Bloomington
    • 2007: NU, 31-28, on Nov. 10 in Evanston
    • 2004: NU, 31-24, (2OT) on Oct. 9 in Evanston
    • 2003: NU, 37-31, (OT) on Oct. 11 in Bloomington
    • 2002: NU, 41-37, on Nov. 2 in Evanston

    Northwestern Ties
    Hoosiers head coach Kevin Wilson coached at Northwestern from 1999-2001. He was promoted to assistant head coach and offensive coordinator in 2001 after serving as offensive coordinator in 1999 and 2000. He also worked with the quarterbacks.
    • Wilson's 2000 offense averaged 42.1 points per game in Big Ten play, which is the third-best output in conference history, and boosted the Wildcats to a share of the Big Ten championship.
    • IU offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach Kevin Johns spent the 2004-10 campaigns at NU. Additionally, he was an offensive graduate assistant under Wilson from 1999-2001.
    • Noah Herron, Indiana's offensive graduate assistant, was a four-year letterwinner with the Wildcats (2001-04) and closed his career as the program's fifth all-time leading rusher (2,524).
    • Northwestern's wide receivers coach Dennis Springer was on Indiana's coaching staff from 2008-10.

    Illinois Connection
    Eleven Hoosiers hail from the state of Illinois. Dimitrius Carr-Watson (Calumet City/Mount Carmel HS), Joe and Marc Damisch (Arlington Heights/Buffalo Grove), Peyton Eckert (Arlington Heights/Prospect), Mitch Ewald (Naperville/Waubonsie Valley), Will Matte (Wheaton/Wheaton-Warrenville South), Jake Michalek (Midlothian/Brother Rice), Justin Pagán (Chicago/St. Patrick), Matt Perez (Park Ridge/Maine South), Adam Pines (Highland Park/Highland Park) and Teddy Schell (Barrington/Barrington) all arrived from the Land of Lincoln.

    Mr. Roberson's Neighborhood
    At Iowa, Tre Roberson became the first IU true freshman quarterback to start. Roberson celebrated his 19th birthday by becoming the third Hoosier to earn Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors this season.
    • He completed 16-of-24 (66.7 percent) for 197 yards and a touchdown with zero interceptions. Roberson also rushed for 84 yards on 16 carries (5.2 average).
    • His rushing total was the most for a Hoosier quarterback since Sept. 20, 2008, when Kellen Lewis dashed for 148 yards against Ball State.
    • Roberson became only the second true freshman quarterback to play at Indiana in the Virginia game. He also appeared against South Carolina State before earning his first extensive action vs. Illinois.
    • He went 11-of-17 for 148 yards, rushed for 36 yards and scored on a 2-yard run against UI.
    • On the season, Roberson is 29-of-46 (63.0) with 355 yards, one TD and one INT to go along with 146 rushing yards on 40 carries with one score in five games.
    • As a true freshman in 1977, Tim Clifford completed 8-of-15 for 143 yards with one touchdown, one interception and 25 rushing yards in one half of work.
    • Roberson earned Indiana's 2010 Mr. Football Award at Lawrence Central High School in Indianapolis.
    • He passed for 2,611 yards, 24 touchdowns and four interceptions and rushed for 1,992 yards and 21 scores.
    • His grandfather, Larry Highbaugh, played defensive back and ran track at IU from 1968-71.
    • Highbaugh played briefly with the Dallas Cowboys, spent 13 years in the Canadian Football League and was inducted into the CFL Hall of Fame in 2004.




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