With the news that Indiana Hoosier quarterbacks Dusty Kiel and Ed Wright-Baker have left the program coming on the heels of former IU commit Gunner Kiel’s commitment to LSU, you’d think things are pretty bad in Bloomington. But that’s a tricky statement because things are always bad in Bloomington when it comes to college football.
While losing Kiel the Younger to LSU stings because we all thought for a minute that maybe Hoosiers coach Kevin Wilson was more of a genius than anyone imagined, at least this latest purge at the quarterback position means Wilson might be getting to assemble his players. If this ship sinks, and historically speaking, it will, then it might as well be with guys Wilson wants on campus.
Let’s not forget that Dusty Kiel sucked in his time for the Hoosiers and Ed Wright-Baker wasn’t much better. The team went 1-11 in 2011, so everyone sucked, but the quarterback position was a hurricane of awfulness before true freshman Tre Roberson was thrust into the lineup. Roberson was overmatched but at least performed admirably. You could see flashes of something good coming down the road when he was in the game.
With Kiel and Wright-Baker? Not so much. To paraphrase a text I sent Phillips before Roberson got the job: When Wright-Baker was in, the offense is a turnover machine. When Kiel was in, the offense just sucks.
All that has really happened here is Indiana getting rid of two Bill Lynch recruits who never had the arm strength or skills to play Big Ten football. I’m sure they’re perfectly good kids, but semi-anonymous bloggers don’t have to worry about that. They’ll both land on their feet somewhere. Especially since they chose to leave Bloomington.
Gunner Kiel couldn’t have honestly thought that his brother deserved to start, though the timing of his de-commitment from Indiana suggests the family wasn’t happy with Wilson’s treatment of his older brother. That said, I’m not sure what a completion percentage of 45 percent and 5.21 yards per attempt says about Dusty Kiel’s treatment of the football, but I digress.
Losing Gunner Kiel sucks, but most Indiana fans recognize getting even a verbal commitment from a five-star (or four-star, depending on who you ask) recruit to Indiana was an unimaginable score for a program that isn’t at that level. Yet.
Losing Dusty Kiel and Ed Wright-Baker just means that Indiana is continuing the transition from the well-intentioned Bill Lynch era to whatever the Kevin Wilson era is going to be (ask our own Hick Flick if you have twenty minutes to hear a grown man yell in full voice). No one should be surprised that some recognizable players are out. It’s how these things work.
Now if only Wilson would get around to getting his offense a halfway decent line and fixing the entire defense.