Weather, flight's mechanical problems delay Hoosiers' arrival

Updated: December 28, 2007, 5:10 PM ET
Associated Press

PHOENIX -- The Indiana University football team arrived in Arizona seven hours late on Thursday, missing a practice for the Insight Bowl.

Indiana's flight was delayed by weather and mechanical problems, but the Hoosiers remained on track to fulfill the goal of their late coach Terry Hoeppner to play 13 games this year.

"That was obviously a rally cry to our program and our community all fall," said Indiana coach Bill Lynch, who had been Hoeppner's top assistant since 2004 and was promoted to the top job this past offseason.

Hoeppner died at age 59 in June after a long battle with cancer.

Indiana players will wear "HEP" buttons as they prepare to play Oklahoma State (6-6) in Monday's Insight Bowl. The buttons match patches stitched on the players' jerseys.

Lynch hopes to get Indiana (7-5) used to winning bowl games. The school's last bowl victory was in 1991, a 24-0 win over Baylor in Tucson. That was when the Insight Bowl was called the Copper Bowl.

"I think it is the first step in building the kind of program we want here," Lynch said this month after Indiana learned it was selected to play in the Insight Bowl. "We've reached that first step, and now we have to try and take advantage of it."

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press