There’s no doubt Indiana’s defense has improved since Tom Allen arrived in Bloomington in 2016. Back then, Allen was the defensive coordinator for the Hoosiers under then-head coach Kevin Wilson.
Solid defense has continued to be a priority under Allen since taking over the program in 2017. And while the Hoosiers had some hiccups on that side of the football last season, IU’s defense is still leaps and bounds ahead of where it was under Wilson. Heading into the 2020 season, Allen is expecting the defense to look much better than a year ago.
“Defensively, we were very young two years ago. We were still young last year and it showed a few times,” Allen told IUHoosiers.com. “It hurt us at times.
“We have to continue to grow through those mistakes we made. I know we will. That’s why this spring was off to a really, really good start. I loved the way we were practicing. I loved the communication on defense. I loved the energy on defense. I loved the confidence, the intensity of those guys.”
Indiana’s defense allowed 24.4 points per game last season, ranking ninth in the B1G. The Hoosiers also struggled against the passing attack, allowing more than 200 yards per contest through the air.
Still, Allen believes the experience his players have gained on the field will be a significant advantage for his defense this fall.
“They’re all a year older,” Allen said. “They’ve all played so much football.”
Indiana is coming off its best season in decades, finishing with an 8-5 record, defeating Purdue to reclaim the Old Oaken Bucket and making an appearance in the Gator Bowl. At one point, the Hoosiers were 7-2 and were ranked in the Associated Press poll for the first time in 25 years.
There’s no question Allen is trying to build off that success and create a consistent winner in Bloomington.