The quarterback carousel has spun for weeks at Indiana, but the Hoosiers want it to stop this Saturday when they host Rutgers in Bloomington, Ind.
Coach Tom Allen said Monday that Indiana (2-4, 0-3 Big Ten) will not continue to rotate quarterbacks Tayven Jackson and Brendan Sorsby the way it did in last week’s 52-7 loss to No. 2 Michigan. Allen has not decided who will start the Rutgers game.
“Bottom line is we definitely want to be able to have some continuity there,” Allen said. “I know we’ve obviously had some back and forth with that throughout the course of the season, as we have two young guys that we know are trying to grow and develop, and as we figure out what their strengths are as well. We just want to see them play consistently and build it around them.”
Jackson has started five of the games and has completed 60.9 percent of his passes for 914 yards, two touchdowns and five interceptions. Sorsby has gotten into four games, starting the season opener against Ohio State, and has completed just 51.7 percent of his throws for 294 yards, two touchdowns and no picks, adding 81 rushing yards.
Coach Greg Schiano and Rutgers are left preparing for both quarterbacks.
“They both can throw it very well,” Schiano said. “They are both athletic. I don’t know, it’s going to be a challenge whoever lines up back there. But knowing who starts the game, that will be the guy, then we’ve just got to be ready for both.”
Rutgers (5-2, 2-2) is coming off a 27-24 comeback victory at home over Michigan State. Rutgers scored three touchdowns in the fourth quarter thanks in part to a fumble return TD and a botched Spartan kick return.
Scarlet Knights running back Kyle Monangai continues to put together a strong campaign. After piling up 148 yards and a go-ahead 21-yard touchdown run against the Spartans, Monangai leads the Big Ten in rushing (635 yards).
Schiano likened Monangai to program legends Ray Rice and Brian Leonard, all power backs who run “downhill.”
“What I think Kyle is a great representation of is this is his fourth year in the program,” Schiano said. “He’s developed year after year. He’s gotten stronger. He’s gotten better as a football player. He’s matured and now he’s a grown man playing running back.”
The Hoosiers are 5-4 in the all-time series since Rutgers joined them in the Big Ten East Division. Rutgers has taken the past two meetings after Indiana rattled off five straight victories.