Indiana Football vs Rutgers: 3 keys to the game

PISCATAWAY, NJ - SEPTEMBER 29: Artur Sitkowski #8 of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights throws during the fourth quarter against the Indiana Hoosiers at HighPoint.com Stadium on September 29, 2018 in Piscataway, New Jersey. Indiana won 24-17. (Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images)
PISCATAWAY, NJ - SEPTEMBER 29: Artur Sitkowski #8 of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights throws during the fourth quarter against the Indiana Hoosiers at HighPoint.com Stadium on September 29, 2018 in Piscataway, New Jersey. Indiana won 24-17. (Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images) /
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PISCATAWAY, NJ – AUGUST 30: Isaih Pacheco #1 of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights stiff arms Logan Darby #31 of the Massachusetts Minutemen during the fourth quarter at SHI Stadium on August 30, 2019 in Piscataway, New Jersey. Rutgers defeated UMass 48-21. (Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images)
PISCATAWAY, NJ – AUGUST 30: Isaih Pacheco #1 of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights stiff arms Logan Darby #31 of the Massachusetts Minutemen during the fourth quarter at SHI Stadium on August 30, 2019 in Piscataway, New Jersey. Rutgers defeated UMass 48-21. (Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images) /

2. Lock Down Isaih Pacheco

As the starting running back coming into this season, Pacheco was already a vital part of the Rutgers offense.

Now he is nearly the only offensive option following Raheem Blackshear’s unexpected decision to redshirt this season, ahead of last week’s loss to Maryland.

Pacheco has the ability to be a big time player at the power-five level, but with no skill players around him, it’s difficult to get a ton of production.

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After his 158-yard outing in the season opener against UMass, Pacheco has collected just 184 yards in the four games since, with just one game over 50 yards.

Though he isn’t much of a pass catcher out of the backfield, it wouldn’t surprise me if newly appointed interim head coach Nunzio Campanile drew up more plays, in his second game as the leader of the program, to get the ball to Pacheco as much as possible.

The 5-foot-11 back could find some success against an inconsistent IU defense if he is able to get into the second level, as we are all aware of the inability of the Indiana secondary to tackle the ball carrier.