Success for Indiana in 2021 hinges on the health of quarterback Michael Penix Jr. There’s no question the Hoosier operates at a much higher level when he’s on the field.

It should comes as good news, then, that Penix is confident that he’ll be ready for IU’s season opener against Iowa at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 4. The quarterback has been rehabbing an ACL injury he suffered near the end of the season in 2020.

“I’ll definitely be ready 100%,” Penix said at B1G Media Days, per CNHI’s Kevin Brockway. “I can’t wait to get out there with the guys.”

Penix is considered by many to be the top returning quarterback in the B1G. He threw for 1,645 yards and 14 touchdowns with just 4 interceptions in six games last season. The Hoosiers were 5-1 with him in the lineup.

Over the course of his two years as a starter, Indiana is 10-2 with Penix starting under center. But his health has been a concern, suffering injuries that sidelined him each of the past two years.

In the final two games of the season against Wisconsin and Ole Miss, Indiana totaled just 34 points with Jack Tuttle taking snaps for the Hoosiers. The passing attack didn’t have nearly that same zip, leading many to place expectations for IU’s 2021 season on the shoulders of Penix’s availability.