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Indiana University

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Indiana
vs. Michigan State
When: Noon Saturday
TV: Big Ten Network
Radio: 1250 AM, 102.7 FM
Associated Press
Since taking over for injured quarterback Tre Roberson, Cameron Coffman has thrown for 519 yards with three touchdowns.

Hoosiers stressing improved QB play

– Cameron Coffman and Nate Sudfeld have split the reps 50-50 this week as Indiana prepares for Saturday’s game against Michigan State.

It remains to be seen which one will emerge as the starting quarterback for the homecoming game.

“I’m not trying to be a Little League coach and make everybody happy and give everybody a trophy when the year is over. I’m trying to get them better,” Indiana coach Kevin Wilson said during his weekly news conference Tuesday in Bloomington.

“I want them both to be better. They both have things to work on.”

Coffman has started both games since Tre Roberson suffered a season-ending leg injury Sept. 8 against Massachusetts. Sudfeld replaced an injured Coffman on Sept. 15 against Ball State. The Hoosiers used both quarterbacks in Saturday’s 44-29 loss at Northwestern.

“They both are going to end up playing a lot of football for us this year,” IU offensive coordinator Seth Littrell said. “The biggest thing is not worrying about who the starting quarterback is as much as worrying about making sure they each get individually better each day.

“In order to help this team win, they are going to have to grow each day.”

Coffman threw for 109 yards against the Wildcats. The junior college transfer has completed 66.2 percent of his passes (53 for 80) for 519 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. Sudfeld threw for 157 yards against Northwestern. The freshman has completed 62.5 percent of his passes (25 for 40) for 357 yards and three touchdowns.

“Our players like both guys. I don’t think they really know who’s in or think much about it. They are both similar in what they do. The offense doesn’t change,” Wilson said. “I like both of them, but I think they both need to be a lot better. I don’t think either one of them played poorly. I don’t think either one of them played that much better than the other one.”

The Hoosiers will face a Michigan State squad that is second in the Big Ten in pass defense, allowing just 167.2 yards per game.

“(Indiana) throws the ball effectively down the field,” Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio said during the Big Ten teleconference. “Both of them demonstrated the ability to throw it.”

Opponents are completing just 49.7 percent of their passes against the Spartans.

“I like them both, I need them both to significantly continue to improve,” Wilson added during the Big Ten teleconference. “That’s all we’re asking them to do, every meeting, every practice, every game. Look at the mirror on the way out and make sure you’re better than when you started.

“Whether Cam goes out first or Nate, the offense isn’t going to dramatically change significantly. One is a little taller, but they both throw the same kind of balls and both distribute it well.

“Bottom line, our whole team better be getting better every day.”

lpope@jg.net

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