Ranking coaches in the B1G can be a pretty easy task. It’s easy to place a number beside a guy, failing to give any reasoning behind his placement on a “power rankings,” list.
At Saturday Tradition, though, we don’t want to just give you the rankings. We want to provide you with a detailed description of each head coach and why he’s ranked in his selected spot.
This was a practice that was kicked up from the ground last year and, since there’s still several months until football season gets underway, it’s worth revisiting. So, let’s continue our 2017 #B1GCoachRank:
Coach: No. 13 Tom Allen (Indiana)
Record: 0-1 (0-0 B1G)
Record vs. top 25: 0-1
Where team was when he was hired: Allen is inheriting an Indiana program that’s on the uptick and is going through one of its best stretches in over two decades.
Kevin Wilson introduced a high-powered offense in Bloomington, which helped the Hoosiers evolve into a competitive program. He took Indiana to the Pinstripe Bowl in 2015 because of a highly-efficient passing attack. In 2016, Wilson hired Allen to improve a defense that was one of the worst in the B1G. Thanks to that addition, the Hoosiers reached a second-straight bowl game for the first time in 25 years.
The rumors about player mistreatment that cost Wilson his job seem to be solely tied to the former head coach, meaning Allen doesn’t have a huge mess to clean up. Instead, he’ll try to move the program forward and try to get over the six-win hump the Hoosiers have been stuck on the past two seasons.
Biggest win: N/A
Most embarrassing loss: Dec. 28, 2016, Foster Farms Bowl vs. Utah
Allen has only served as the head coach in one game, Indiana’s bowl game against No. 23 Utah. It wasn’t an embarrassing loss by any stretch, but it was a disappointing outcome.
The Utes kicked a game-winning field goal to knock off the Hoosiers 26-24, robbing Allen of a victory in his first game. There were plenty of plays Indiana would love to have back from that game, but it only falls under this category because it’s the only loss on Allen’s resume.
Best recruiting class: 2017
Allen was able to put together a decent class despite taking over on short notice. Indiana was able to land three-star DT Juan Harris and flipped three-star athlete Juwan Burgess from USC. That’s a pretty impressive feat for a program that has been at the bottom of the B1G for so many years.
Overall, Indiana brought in 22 recruits but didn’t receive high rankings from 247 Sports. The Hoosiers ranked 64th nationally and 13th in the B1G with its 2017 class.
By the numbers, this class doesn’t look impressive, but there are some hidden gems in there.
What could get him fired: Unless there’s some sort of mistreatment allegation, there’s nothing that will drive Fred Glass to remove Allen from his post.
Why he’s at No. 13: Though his head coaching experience is extremely limited, Allen completely turned around Indiana’s defense last season. Considering how close the Hoosiers came to pulling a few upsets along the way, there’s a positive vibe moving forward for hoosiers football.
Allen was a field goal away from winning a bowl game, revitalized an awful defense and was able to land some big-name recruits. That’s why he ranks ahead of Chris Ash. But with only one game on his resume, it’s not enough to be any higher.
No. 13 Tom Allen (Indiana)
No. 12 TBA