Kevin Wilson resigned as head football coach at Indiana, and
defensive coordinator Tom Allen was promoted to head coach on a
permanent basis, the school announced Thursday evening.
The change occurred even though the Hoosiers are bowl-eligible for
the second consecutive season. The Hoosiers (6-6, 4-5 Big Ten) last
made consecutive bowl appearances in 1990-91.
Players were told of the changes in a meeting early Thursday
evening, the Indianapolis Star reported.
“I appreciate Coach Wilson’s many positive contributions to our
football program,” athletic director Fred Glass said, according to
the Indiana website. “This has nothing to do with the performance
of the football team, which I view as quite positive and very much
heading in the right direction.”
Glass said no NCAA compliance issues were involved in the
According to the Star, Glass met with Wilson in his office Thursday
morning and accepted Wilson’s resignation “based on the
philosophical differences we have in terms of leadership of Indiana
ESPN reported that at least five former Indiana players were
interviewed by the administration about Wilson’s treatment of the
players. An ex-Hoosiers player was the source of that report.
Wilson owns a 26-47 record in his six seasons in Bloomington,
although the team won six games in each of the past two seasons —
a dramatic rise from a 1-11 campaign in his first year.
“Once Coach Wilson and I concluded to part ways, I turned to
determining who the best person in the country would be to keep up
our momentum and take us to another level with our football team,”
Glass said. “I quickly concluded that person was in our midst in
Tom Allen. He is a leader of men. He is demanding without being
demeaning. He is a proven, successful coach on a national scale
with deep Indiana ties. He cares about his players, and they care
Allen has a lot of coaching experience, but he has never been a
collegiate head coach.
Wilson brought Allen to Indiana from the University of South
Florida in January to try to fix the Hoosiers’ defense. The
Hoosiers showed great improvement on the defensive side, reducing
points allowed from 37.62 in 2015 to 27.33 in 2016, and cutting
down yards allowed per game from 509.5 in 2015 to 372.6 this season.
“It’s hard to believe,” Allen said during his introduction as head
coach. “This day has been an absolute whirlwind. Unbelievable. But
I do know this: In the year that I’ve been here, it became very,
very obvious to me of Fred’s commitment to this football program,
to Indiana athletics, to the facility upgrades that we’ve seen, the
facility upgrades that we’re about to see, and his passion for the
student-athletes at our great university.
“Our immediate goal is to prepare for our bowl game. We’re going to
keep our staff intact, adjust guys around to make sure we have
everything covered for this bowl game, and attack it with the
energy and passion, the only way I know how.”