Cody Latimer headlines deep group of receivers for Indiana

Indiana had four receivers catch at least 40 passes last season and all four are back, lending credence to the idea that the Hoosiers again will lead the Big Ten in passing.

IU averaged 311.2 passing yards per game, a figure good enough for 17th in the nation. That came with three quarterbacks (Carson Coffman, Tre Roberson and Nate Sudfeld) seeing extensive time. All three are back, and coach Kevin Wilson has not named a starter.

One position where there are no questions for Wilson is wide receiver. IU is blessed with the deepest receiving corps in the Big Ten. The standout is junior Cody Latimer, who should begin to receive national attention this season.

Latimer (6 feet 3, 215 pounds) is a good fit for Wilson's pass-happy offense; he has good size, is physical and can get deep. Last season, he had 51 receptions, including six that went for touchdowns, and led the Hoosiers with 805 receiving yards (15.8 yards per catch).

Latimer didn't play football until his junior season of high school and he hasn't redshirted at IU, which means last season was only his fourth of organized football. Thus, as he continues to learn the nuances of the position, his production should increase. He started to use his big body to his advantage about midway through last season, and if he continues to progress, he'll become an intriguing pro prospect because of his size/speed mix.

While Latimer is the standout, there are other key receivers. Speedy junior Shane Wynn (5-7, 170) led IU last season with 68 catches and scored six TDs. But his catches went for only 660 yards, and his 9.7-yards-per-catch average was a surprisingly low figure given his quickness. Wynn, who played for coach Ted Ginn Sr. at powerhouse Cleveland Glenville, does a nice job of finding open spaces and has good hands.

Senior Kofi Hughes (6-2, 217) was the third wide receiver with at least 40 catches, finishing with 43 for 639 yards and three scores. He was a high school quarterback who was converted to receiver when he arrived at IU. Hughes has good speed and is athletic, but tends to be a sloppy route runner and must improve his overall consistency.

Senior tight end Ted Bolser (6-6, 252) had 41 catches for 445 yards and three TDs. He has the most receiving yards (1,017) for a tight end in school history, and he has shown the ability to get deep on occasion. He is a solid possession receiver who also seems to relish his blocking assignments.

Depth at wide receiver is ample. Senior Duwyce Wilson (6-3, 201) was impressive as a redshirt freshman in 2010, but hasn't reached those heights again. He suffered a torn ACL late in the 2011 season and didn't seem all the way back last fall. Still, he is a solid No. 4 receiver with an inspiring back story (both his parents are deaf). Junior Nick Stoner (6-1, 182) also provides depth; he is a key sprinter for IU's track team, which won the 2012 Big Ten indoor title.

A powerful offense could help IU get to a bowl for the first time since the 2007 season. The defense has issues, for sure, but the schedule includes eight home games. The first road game isn't until Oct. 12, and the four road games come against teams that IU likely wasn't going to beat anyway (Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Wisconsin). While an 8-0 home record is a little too much to ask for, if the Hoosiers can go 6-2 at Memorial Stadium, which seems a distinct possibility, a bowl bid beckons.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at mike.huguenin@nfl.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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