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Indiana University

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Indiana
What: Cream & Crimson game
When: Noon today
Where: Memorial Stadium, Bloomington

Spring game will highlight IU’s quarterback situation

– Tre Roberson emerged late last season as Indiana’s starting quarterback.

Edward Wright-Baker and Dusty Kiel left during the offseason, making Roberson the Hoosiers’ most experienced quarterback.

IU added junior college transfer Cameron Coffman and together the two have grown this spring. Indiana wraps up spring camp with the Cream & Crimson game today at Memorial Stadium.

“Right now, Tre is a young guy, even though he played last year and started the last five games, this is spring No. 1 for him. Cam’s been here for 2 1/2 months,” IU coach Kevin Wilson said during the Big Ten teleconference Wednesday. “We’re making strides. I like what those guys are bringing. But they’ve got a lot of work to do to keep moving them where we need to get to.”

Roberson completed 81 of 142 passes (57 percent) for 937 yards, three touchdowns and six interceptions. He also had 426 rushing yards with two scores in nine games.

“He’s got a very nice skill set as a quarterback. I think just learning how to go through progressions, put the ball on target,” Wilson said. “We’re trying to make some real strides in being much more efficient in the pass game. We were at 54, 56, 57, 58 percent most games.

“You have to be clicking in the mid-60s right now to be just OK. The really good teams are pushing that 70 barrier and a number of teams are over that. It’s getting much more efficient where when we have an easy throw, an easy read, we get the ball target to a skill guy.”

Coffman joined the team from Arizona Western Community College.

“Cam has progressed in the pass game very nicely. We’re really pushing Tre in that regards. I think he has the skill set to be a complete player. He probably made more plays for us with his feet, running around a little bit,” Wilson said. “I don’t think we’re going to make significant jumps offensively designing quarterback run plays and taking advantage of Tre’s ability to run. We need to throw the ball better. He’s making some progress, but Cam’s been on his heels.

“He’s working with the ones and twos to make it a great competition. I don’t think we have a controversial issue, but we do have two very competitive players and we’ll look forward to seeing what (incoming freshman) Nate (Sudfeld) looks like when he gets here involved in the summer.”

Junior college players have also helped on defense. Jacarri Alexander and David Cooper have seen some time at linebacker. Ryan Thompson and Tregg Waters are in the secondary while Justin Rayside plays is on the defensive line.

“They have all helped with our energy,” Wilson said. “And defensively, year two, we’re playing better team defense. We understand our system, we’ve tweaked some things to help our players. Our kids aren’t thinking as much. We’re not blowing assignments in spring ball. We’re tackling better. We’re a long way to where we want to get to, but we’re making some really good strides and those junior college players are very much a part of what’s going on with that side of the ball.”

lpope@jg.net

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