This Zander Diamont kid has a lot of heart. Sure, the Indiana Hoosiers lost to the top ranked Ohio State Buckeyes, but this kid gave all that he had with every inch of his slightly built frame.
He is the kid of a Soap Opera star, Don Diamont, who stars on the Bold and the Beautiful. I don’t watch day time television unless it’s a Saturday afternoon and it’s football, and I especially don’t
watch Soap Operas at all. But they say that Don Diamont has been a star on 2 of them for years, he started on The Young and the Restless, and then he moved over to The Bold and the Beautiful.
ESPN recruiting rankings had Alexander Diamont from Los Angeles Venice High School at their number 85 spot for Pocket Passers. They had him as a 3 star and he was listed at 6-2, 175.
Those numbers were pretty generous. When he got to Indiana, I have heard that he was really 6-1, 158. Who knows the actual truth, but he was not very big.
Due to injuries to other players and the loss of starting Quarterback Nate Sudfeld for the season, Diamont was forced into playing duties when he really needed to redshirt as a freshman. He could have used a little more time to learn the system, but mostly he needed to physically mature.
He struggled as a true freshman as true freshmen Quarterbacks tend to do. He only completed 48% of his passes for 515 yards while only throwing 1 Touchdown pass and 4 Interceptions. That was a very freshman like season.
Known as a Pocket Passer, Diamont also ran for 133 yards and 2 Touchdowns.
The still undefeated at 4-0, but also still unranked Indiana Hoosiers hosted the number 1 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes on Saturday with Quarterback Nate Sudfeld running the show.
Star Running Back Jordan Howard, a transfer from the University of Alabama Birmingham, had nearly run for 700 yards coming into this game. Howard was struggling early on, and then Sudfeld went down to an injury.
Zander Diamont was forced into his first playing time of the season so far and it was against the top ranked team in the nation.
Diamont didn’t get that much done in the passing game only completing 6 passes out of 14 attempts for 76 yards. But, in his defense, he was running for his life on several occasions.
It was with his feet that kept his Hoosiers in the game with a 79 yard Touchdown run when Diamont ran the zone read and Ohio State Safety Tyvis Powell misjudged Diamont’s speed and missed the tackle. Then, Diamont outran the entire Ohio State secondary for 79 yards and a score to keep his Hoosiers in the game.
Pocket Passer? This kid can run a little bit.
Diamont, undersized and mostly unwanted as a Quarterback recruit, came to Indiana and for the second time in two seasons was forced into playing before maybe he was ready.
He responded with a lot of fight and a lot of heart and should be admired.
In the off season, there was talk of Indiana head football coach Kevin Wilson was on some kind of a hot seat, meaning he might be in some trouble and in danger of being fired. His 2014 team finished 4-8 after a promising start. But, Wilson is one of the better coaches in the country and in no way should this guy be fired.
He is 4-1 at Indiana which is not exactly a football school, nor located in a hotbed of high school football stars. Basketball is a different story, but football has never been huge in the state of Indiana. They do have occasional stars coming out of the state, but most of them leave for greener pastures. The Indiana Hoosiers are left with the leftovers and whatever kids they get lucky enough to bring in from other states, particularly Florida.
Indiana has not won the Big 10 Conference championship in football and gone to the Rose Bowl since 1967.
But, coming into this game with Ohio State they had already won 4 games.
Granted, the Buckeyes held on and won over the Hoosiers 24-17 after a valiant effort by the Hoosiers both offensively and defensively.
This was a great game mostly because of the heart shown by the Hoosiers on both sides of the ball. The Buckeyes have the better team and wound up prevailing.
But, Zander Diamont won me over with his determination and fight.
The Hoosiers have a really solid Offensive Line led by Left Tackle Jason Spriggs, Right Guard Dan Feeney and Right Tackle Dimitric Camiel.
But, as great as these guys are, they had their hands full with an also great Buckeye Defensive Line led by Defensive End Joey Bosa and Defensive Tackle Adolphus Washington.
On the last play of the game, the Indiana Center snapped the ball poorly and it went off to the side of Zander Diamont.
The undersized Quarterback fought gamely to control the ball and rolled out to his left and threw the ball into the End Zone were it was batted down by Ohio State star Cornerback Eli Apple to end the game. If he had completed the pass, the Hoosiers would have forced Overtime with the Buckeyes.
I left the game more impressed with Zander Diamont and his fight than I did with the Ohio State Buckeyes. The kid showed some good speed on that 79 yard run and he showed some grit and determination being under a heavy rush from the Buckeye front four and he showed some leadership.
Indiana does not get a break this week as they travel to Happy Valley and play the Penn State Nittany Lions and their tough defense.
But, sophomore Quarterback Zander Diamont will give everything he has.
I am sure of that.