BLOOMINGTON – Indiana began its preparation for Navy's triple-option offense in the spring, and it carried that into fall camp, as well. The Hoosiers played a Thursday game against Indiana State in Week 1 to give themselves extra time to prepare for the Midshipmen's distinct style.
It hasn't done any good so far.
Navy leads IU 24-14 at halftime at Memorial Stadium. The Midshipmen gained 255 yards on 35 rushing attempts and did not attempt a pass until the middle of the second quarter.
That play went for 47 yards, put Navy at the 6-yard line and set up the Midshipmen for their third touchdown run of the game.
Navy averaged 278.4 rushing yards per game last season, which was sixth in the nation.
The Hoosiers lost the possession time battle by 6:20 in the first half. But when it struck, IU struck quickly.
Sophomore quarterback Nate Sudfeld came in after two stalled series by redshirt sophomore Tre Roberson. He led IU into the red zone before an interception ended the drive.
After a 13-yard run by running back Tevin Coleman, in his second series, Sudfeld completed a 21-yard pass to tight end Ted Bolser. He followed that with a 45-yard bomb to wideout Kofi Hughes, who reeled in the pass for a score. The three-play drive covered 79 yards in 1:03.
With his team down 24-7 and 4:47 left in the half, Sudfeld was surgical.
The 6-foot-5 signal caller took IU 80 yards on 10 plays and was 6 for 8 on the drive, which ended on a 6-yard touchdown to Bolser. It was Bolser's third touchdown of the season and took the game clock to 1:37.
Sudfeld threw for 160 yards in the first half and was 12 for 16 with two touchdowns and an interception.
But the defense, porous from the start, gave up some more big gains and let the Midshipmen stroll downfield despite being out of timeouts.
Navy picked up gains of 12, 24 and 15 yards, along with a pair of short gains, to set up for an end-of-half field goal. Luckily for the Hoosiers, it went wide left, and IU is down just 10 points after an abhorrent first half defensively.