Indiana-Duke grades: QB Thomas Sirk gets it done on the ground

The highest-graded players and top takeaways from Duke's 44-41 overtime win over Indiana in the Pinstripe Bowl.

| 2 years ago
(AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

(AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Indiana-Duke grades: QB Thomas Sirk gets it done on the ground

Here are the top takeaways and highest-graded players from the Pinstripe Bowl, with Duke topping Indiana 44-41 in overtime.

Indiana Hoosiers

– Duke and Indiana played a shootout versus each other, where a controversial missed field goal in overtime cost the Hoosiers the game. QB Nate Sudfeld was good between the hashes, completing 16-of-24 for 204 yards and a +2 grade. However, when Duke’s defense was able to take away the middle of the field, Sudfeld was limited to 12-of-27 for 186 yards.

– With defense seemingly optional for most of the game, there was one player who stood head and shoulders above everyone else, and that was DT Darius Latham (+8.1). Latham only had two hurries, but was still a handful in the passing game; typically, the ball was out too quick for him to actually record a pressure. But where he stood out was in the run game, recording three stops and often taking away running lanes for Duke’s running backs.

– One of the other handful of defensive players who played well for the Hoosiers was middle linebacker Clyde Newton (+2.3). With 10 tackles and two assists, he was very active; while his tackle numbers look better than his performance, he still played well against the run in filling his lanes and being able to shed blockers to make tackles, which in this game was not always a certainty, as both teams combined for 23 missed tackles.

Top performers:

DT Darius Latham (+8.1)

OL Dan Feeney (+3.0)

OL Wes Martin (+2.9)

DE Nick Mangieri (+2.3)

LB Clyde Newton (+2.3)


Duke Blue Devils

– As a passer, Thomas Sirk (0.0) was unable to match his counterpart Nate Sudfeld. However, he was able to make up for it in the run game, with his 160 yards and two touchdowns, including his 73-yard touchdown run where he was patient to find a running lane, and then turned on the speed to keep from being caught.

– Duke had five defensive backs who played 103 of the 105 offensive snaps the Hoosiers ran. The problem was the level of play they got out of the five, outside of Deondre Singleton (+1.6), who was able to come down in the run game and be an effective player against the Hoosiers’ run game. Every other player graded below -1 in the secondary. The lowest-graded player was DeVon Edwards (-4.8), who gave up 167 yards in coverage on 13 targets.

– Just like the secondary, the offensive line had their own issues, with only one of the five starting offensive lineman grade above 0. The standout of the group was left guard Lucas Patrick (+5.3), who was used as a pulling guard a lot in this game to open up the edge for the Blue Devils. Because Duke used a lot of quick passes, the offensive line allowed minimal pressure; however, the line struggled in the run game, often causing the running backs to have to change their point of attack. If it wasn’t for the big plays, Duke would have been blown out of this game, but managed to produce enough special moments to win.

Top performers:

OL Lucas Patrick (+5.3)

DT Mike Ramsay (+4.0)

SS Deondre Singleton (+1.6)

HB Jela Duncan (+1.2)

DT Edgar Cerenord (+1.1)

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