Dec. 21, 2007
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Head football coach Bill Lynch sat down with IUHoosiers.com to talk about the team's preparation for the Insight Bowl. The Hoosiers just completed a week of two-a-days today and the team is headed home for the holidays before returning Dec. 26. Indiana heads to Tempe the next morning and will face Oklahoma State on New Year's Eve at 3:30 MST/5:30 p.m. EST.
On the team's preparation:
"We went at it pretty good. We got a lot of Oklahoma State work done and a lot done with the younger guys. The young guys practiced a lot during two-a-days. They are tired and have not had this kind of work, which is good. We have these cameras going non-stop, and once we get off the road recruiting we'll evaluate a lot of what we saw from those young guys before spring practice. I think there is some motivation for them and some really good teaching going on. I also think the preparation for Oklahoma State went well and we stayed relatively healthy."
On how the extra practices help the team:
"When we start in the spring we'll be that much further ahead. You only get 15 practices in the spring and sometimes the first four or five practices you are installing the offense and defense because the players haven't been taught it. After you go through this (bowl practice), your first day of spring you can hit the ground running. That is the real benefit of it."
On the team's running backs:
"We really haven't talked personnel this week. I think that will be something we talk about once we get out to Tempe. Demetrius (McCray) seems to be practicing well, but the other backs are as well. (Bryan) Payton certainly got better throughout the year, and I think (Marcus) Thigpen has gotten better. He ran well against Purdue and seems like he is running with some confidence now. Demetrius is a good back and we'll take a look at where he is."
On the team's practices:
On playing in the Insight Bowl:
"They are still practicing hard, but they are having fun. That comes with having a little success. You can have fun doing this as long as you work hard and you understand what it takes. I've been around grumpy teams, and those aren't any fun to be around. They don't enjoy football or they don't enjoy each other. I think this team enjoys football and enjoys being with one another. That is why they are loose and are having fun."
"I think it is the first step in building the kind of program we want here. All BCS football programs are measured on being a bowl team. You have to become a bowl team and then your next step is being a consistent bowl team. Then you are competing for your conference championship and then you are in a BCS bowl. You have to take it one step at a time, like everything else we've tried to do here. We've reached that first step and now we have to try and take advantage of it. We have to take advantage of it by getting better in bowl preparation. We have to take advantage by competing to win the football game and use the momentum going into our off-season development. It certainly helps your recruiting, and that is what builds your program. And it develops confidence, which is the mark of a good, consistent football team. You have to take that first step to get to that next step."