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What to expect in IU sports this fall


By Matt Smith




Welcome home, Hoosier Nation. IU Athletics will soon be in full swing with the fall season. Here is a snapshot of the upcoming fall season.

Football

It finally begins: a season without Bill Lynch as coach.

Coach Kevin Wilson’s new attitude and “win today” mentality should be all the reason someone needs to trek over to Memorial Stadium for Big Ten football. This team will not be Pasadena-bound, but a bowl game is within legitimate reach.

At games’ end, do not worry. Lynch will not be there saying, ‘We played hard, just came up short,’ as it seemed he did after every loss in past years.

Cross Country (Men & Women)

IU Coach Ron Helmer is a lot like Wilson: he demands success and is not pleased without a solid effort. The men finished second in the Big Ten Championship and had an overall solid season a year ago.

 Former Big Ten Track Athlete of the Year, junior Andy Bayer, makes his return from injury and should lead IU to another successful year this season.

A solid group of experienced women look to lead the Hoosiers out of the middle of the pack in the Big Ten this season.

Soccer (Men & Women)

Many people have long said IU is a basketball school because of the five banners and the Bobby Knight years, but let’s be realistic, those years are long gone.

Focus on the seven stars representing soccer championships. Indiana is a soccer school. The No. 17 men’s team begins the quest for its eighth star and opens up the season Saturday at Notre Dame.

The women continue their season Friday in Tampa, Fla., when they play the University of South Florida. If sophomore forward Lisa Nouanesengsy continues her successful start, this team is in solid shape to be competitive. Indiana is 1-0-1 to start the young season.

Field Hockey (Women)

Freshman Nicole Volgraf enjoyed instant success Sep. 20 when she scored three goals on the Hoosiers’ way to a 11-2 domination of Ball State in their preseason finale. A rather young roster poses a lot of question marks after a 9-9 record a season ago.

Golf (Men & Women)

Senior David Erdy will begin the last chapter of his stellar college career when the Hoosiers tee off their season Sept. 10. Erdy, a 2011 All-America scholar, looks to help the Hoosiers improve from their eighth-place finish at the NCAA Regional a season ago.

 Former IU women’s golfer Lauren Harling, who competed in 2007 and 2008, returned this offseason as an assistant coach. Hopefully her success will benefit a current roster that did not see much success last season.

Volleyball

IU Coach Sherry Dunbar and the Hoosiers are coming off one of the most successful seasons in IU Volleyball history. The team should have high expectations as they look to match the success of their Sweet 16 run a season ago.

But who will be the Hoosier that fills the void of middle blocker Ashley Benson, since she exhausted her eligibility after last season?

The long summer without Hoosier athletics is over. Hopefully this fall the Hoosiers bring home more trophies and banners to add to their already sterling success.

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