Information for Football Optimism

SydCamore

The Captain Level
All,

Unfortunately, I have seen most of the people on here go from talking about how young we are and how good our recruiting class was..........to........ we are horrible and it will never work.

How many of you have been to every ISU game for the last 3.5-4 ? I have.

How many of you have been to over 25 practices this year? I have.

How many of you ever played the game of football? I have.

That being said, our roster consists of:
79 players.
7 seniors (was 8, but one just quit)
11 juniors (was 12, but one just quit)
16 sophomores (was 17, but one just quit)
45 Freshmen.

Of the 7 seniors, 4 start.

77% of our roster are Freshmen and Sophomores
55% of our defensive production comes from Freshmen and Sophmores (statistically)

I dare you to find another Division I-IAA program in the country with those numbers. EVER!

As I watch our guys go out on the field and get drubbed by the opponent, I really try to digest what is going on. I feel as though 99.9% of the people watching these games (including the media and most of you) basically just watch the scoreboard. Well, I don't. I watch the way the guys are making their cuts. I watch the way the guys respond from adversity. I watch the way the guys respond to something positive. I watch the way our coaches talk to the players. I watch the way that our players keep their heads up and realize that they are learning.

The number ONE thing that I watch is the fact that we are putting a significant amount of Freshmen and Sophomores on the field against 4th year juniors and 5th year seniors. Let me ask you something, how would your high-school's Freshmen/JV team do against your opponents Varsity team? That is literally what we are doing. Let me ask you something else. What is better experience for a young player.... Being a practice player or being on the field figuring out what it takes to compete at this level?

As I watch the second half of most of our games, I see our team moving the ball a bit and making defensive plays. I know, I know, "But the other team has their second string players in." Very True. GUESS WHAT, the majority of our guys will still be playing at ISU when their second string has graduated.

THINK ABOUT THAT! And Please, stay positive.

Sorry for the negative remarks, I'm not taking shots at anybody personally. I definetly understand how you can be discouraged.
 

IndyTreeFan

The Nicks Level
Supporter
Since I know close to nothing about football, I'm one of those scoreboard watchers! I couldn't tell you if a "cut" is good or bad, or if the routes being run are done right, or if the kick coverage is correct. So, I really take comments from folks like you to heart. I kinda hope that guys like you are telling the truth!

So, how are the young-uns doing? Are they getting better fundamentally? Is there progress? I know we're young. I really hope that this 0-12 group of freshmen can grow into a 12-0 group of seniors. I'm trying to remain positive, but you have to admit, when you get tanked 60-7 every stinkin' week, it's tough.

Give us a bit more insight, Syd. I'd like to hear it!

:sycamores::sycamores::sycamores:
 

ISUGUY

The Blue Level
don't deny that the team is young. a couple questions to surface:
1) how many of these underclassmen will stick around after an 0 - ?? season or 0 - 20+ consecutive losing streak?
2) how long will the administration tolerate winless seasons before the coach is terminated?
3) the continuous losing will no doubt impact the confidence of the younger players. what type of impact will that have on their future? most of these kids were top 10 athletes in their school or on their team and might not adjust well to the losing behavior.
i agree w/others that we should play 1 Big Ten team (3rd game) and open up against Rose Hulman, UIndy or similar schools and at least play competitive football.
 

SydCamore

The Captain Level
Indy and ISUGUY,

We had 11 Freshmen on the field for the opening kickoff yesterday against SIU. WOW! That is absolutely unheard of.

As far as your questions.........

Fundamentally, they are improving greatly. The Freshmen are trying to learn how to play college football. They are also learning how to be a college student. The Freshmen are getting better each week. These kids will only get bigger and faster. Most of them will put on 25 lbs of muscle in the next couple of years.

As far as the mental part of this.............. That is up to the coaches. They have to keep the kids dedicated and focused. We will lose some of the players, no doubt about it. QUite honestly, I don't care if we lose anybody. If somebody wants to give up, fine. They will be quitters the rest of their lives.

I cannot see Coach Miles job being in jeopardy for a couple of years. Remember, he inherited the worst football team in the country. Enough said. Our current struggles rest on the shoulders of the pervious staff.
 

bent20

The Odum Level
I appreciate what you're saying and I thought I saw signs of progress and things I could be optimistic about at the Northern Illinois game, but when I read Golden saying the team isn't showing the kind of effort it needs and is giving the worst performance he's ever seen at ISU that worries me. I didn't get to see yesterday's game but I can guess part of the reason we had some success in the second half wasn't just that we were facing their second or even third and fourth strings, it was that they weren't trying hard to score. We got a TD which is nice but in the second half they still outscored us 10-7, so it's not like our guys are that much better than theirs. Hopefully the recruiting continues. We need some linemen on both sides of the ball to get us started.
 

IndyTreeFan

The Nicks Level
Supporter
Remember, bent20, that our freshmen had already been playing the whole game when we started playing against their freshmen, who were nice and rested. It does give reason to think that in a few years, we will be competitive.

Also, I kinda got the feeling from Coach Miles that most of the players who were here under West will be gone after the season. He basically said that they are the players who aren't giving the effort, both on and off the field.

Believe me, I get as frustrated as you do about the constant losing, but let's give Coach Miles at least a couple of years to get this ship righted. Then, perhaps, we will have a program that we'll be excited about travelling to TH to see every Saturday!!!!

:sycamores::sycamores::sycamores:

BTW, you're no better or worse a fan than me or anyone else on this board, and I really don't think that that was the implication. It's obvious that we all care deeply about our alma mater (or why else would be on here???), and we have disagreements from time to time. We just want to be successful. We'll get there. We have to. We have had 20+ years of inept Athletic Department "leadership." Now that we seemingly have an AD who isn't in totally over his head, let's see where it can go. Could be a fun ride!!! :bigsmile:
 

bent20

The Odum Level
I think you just have a better appreciation of both sides, remaining optimistic like me while getting increasingly frustrated with each blowout loss. I certainly expect these players to get better and I like what I've seen from Miles, especially with recruiting.
 

SycamoreSage

The Captain Level
Antoine Brown?

What happened to Antoine Brown?

He had his best game as a Sycamore against Illinois State but did not play, I don't think, against SIU. I do not remember seeing him on the pre-game injury list.
 

Ong Hop

The Sycamore Level
Sports is basically compounding. Coach Miles is starting with very little in-house talent.
He inherited a few players with "good" talent and a lot of "me too" talent. Many he kept because we needed the bodies. He and his staff recruited a few "very good", some "good" and some "me too" players. We definitely will lose some players. Guess what, we'll recruit a few "very good", some "good" and a few "me too" players next year. BUT, we will now have 2 years of "very good" and "good" players as a team base and we will win 2-3 games next year. The following year more of the same and we start to playing .500 football. It'll just take time as we compond talent.
 

country123a

The Starter Level
...
That being said, our roster consists of:
79 players.
7 seniors (was 8, but one just quit)
11 juniors (was 12, but one just quit)
16 sophomores (was 17, but one just quit)
45 Freshmen.

Of the 7 seniors, 4 start.

77% of our roster are Freshmen and Sophomores
55% of our defensive production comes from Freshmen and Sophmores (statistically)
...
Pretty sobering numbers for sure. If Miles can keep the team focused and believing there should be much better times ahead.
 

bent20

The Odum Level
What happened to Antoine Brown?

He had his best game as a Sycamore against Illinois State but did not play, I don't think, against SIU. I do not remember seeing him on the pre-game injury list.
I don't know, but if you read Sunday's story in the Tribstar it's sad how many players missed the game due to suspensions for rules violations, mostly veterans according to Miles. I'd definitely put a limit on the number of suspensions you can face before getting kicked off the squad and I assume he has.
 

SydCamore

The Captain Level
Bent20,

As I mentioned early, I'm not taking shots at anybody. Heck, I'm as frustrated as you. Actually, I think I'm more frustrated than anybody.

Just remember that you don't get this bad overnight and it is easier to get bad than it is to get good.

By the way, Antoine was suspended for showing up late to something. Another player was suspended for a quarter because he showed up to last Sunday's practice wearing sandles. Behavior like that is not tolerable. Those players SHOULD be suspended. If our best players act like morons, suspend them. What is the worst that is going to happen?

The attitude MUST change. If it takes suspending good players, oh well.
 

bent20

The Odum Level
Bent20,

As I mentioned early, I'm not taking shots at anybody. Heck, I'm as frustrated as you. Actually, I think I'm more frustrated than anybody.

Just remember that you don't get this bad overnight and it is easier to get bad than it is to get good.

By the way, Antoine was suspended for showing up late to something. Another player was suspended for a quarter because he showed up to last Sunday's practice wearing sandles. Behavior like that is not tolerable. Those players SHOULD be suspended. If our best players act like morons, suspend them. What is the worst that is going to happen?

The attitude MUST change. If it takes suspending good players, oh well.
I absolutely agree about the suspensions. Having the right attitude and behavior is the first thing you have to get right. I don't care who it is.
 
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