Four Headlines Dominating This Week: Diaco, Te’o, Heisman, and the BCS

So much for a lull until the national title game.

While I usually handle catching up on news in the Roundup, quite a lot has happened over the weekend and yesterday. Plus, I wanted to comment more than just a sentence or two to these stories.

So here are four headlines that will dominate the rest of the week.

1) Bob Diaco Will Be on Everyone’s Coaching Wishlist

Probably the only downside to being undefeated is that other teams want to mirror your success — by snatching away the coaches that go you there. Hell, we did that very thing to Cincinnati not too long ago in order to get Brian Kelly here.

It’s no secret that Bob Diaco has been not only a major catalyst to our elite defense, but also on the recruiting trail. He will no doubt be at the top of wishlists of many schools; in fact, he’s already been linked to Boston College (with an interview no less) and Cal — I’m sure they won’t be the last ones.

However, I wouldn’t worry about this at all. I don’t think Diaco is going anywhere.

He has a chance at a national title and pretty much any school is going to want a coach hitting the recruiting trail and have more than just a month to get their next class together. Plus, I have a feeling Diaco knows he could hold out for a better job and/or a solid raise at ND.

So why interview with anyone else? The better question is “why not?” Gives him a glimpse of what to expect and it could also drive ND into action to kick his salary up. There is no downside at all for him.

As far as it causing major distractions, I have a feeling more players are worried about their upcoming finals than how this will affect their bowl practices. There is well over a month to prepare for Alabama (who also has a coach that people want) and I would expect this to all be settled before too long.

UPDATE 12/4 2:30PM: Ok so now the coaching carousel has gone mad. Bert Bielema will leave Wisconsin for Arkansas and I’m now very nervous that one of those better jobs I mentioned is now WIDE OPEN for Diaco.

2) Te’o Continues His Hardware Collection, Named Heisman Finalist

We have already covered Te’o’s Butkus win, but that wasn’t the only piece of hardware he received yesterday.

Te’o also won the Nagurski Award (best defensive player). And if that wasn’t enough, he was named one of three Heisman Finalists, meaning he will be heading to New York on Saturday and hopefully receive the most prestigious individual award in college football.

3) By the Way, Heisman Voters Suck

Early returns have shown that voters have actually left Te’o off their ballots. Now, I can understand not thinking Te’o should win, but completely off the ballot?! A couple voters have also left Manziel off their ballots, which makes no sense either.

There was even a first place vote for Monte Ball.

I give up. There is no logical explanation for this.

4) The Irony of Anger towards NIU’s BCS Bid

Yeah, I get it. There are likely better teams that could take NIU’s spot, especially in the SEC, but all those conferences have no one but themselves to blame.

Each BCS conference just had to have their automatic BCS bids. They also had to have a separate BCS Title game beyond the four BCS bowls. Many of them also just had to have a conference championship game as well. And we can’t have one conference running the BCS show, so make sure only two teams max from each conference can get bids.

As a result, rules had to be in place to give non-BCS teams a shot, lest possible anti-trust lawsuits rear their ugly heads (and with the kind of money thrown around, it was definitely a possibility). So to “appease” them, a near-impossible scenario was created. Should a non-BCS conference champ be ranked in the top sixteen AND above a BCS conference champ, they get in.

Then the dominoes started to fall.

Ohio State and Penn State found themselves under sanctions, allowing for unranked Wisconsin to sneak into the B1G Championship and pull not just an upset, but total destruction of Nebraska. The Big East had no dominate team, with each school having at least two conference losses. Florida State even had a bit of a scare to Georgia Tech whom got into the ACC title game due to sanctions against Miami and North Carolina.

And of course, Notre Dame ruined everyone’s party by going undefeated. Meaning, unlike past years, only one conference lost their tie-in (SEC) to the title game. So everyone got to keep their precious conference tie-ins, no matter how bad those champions were.

Of course, with two awful conference champs, this left the door wide open for Northern Illinois to actually make the impossible BCS scenario.

Want to rage? Direct it in the direction of the conferences that put these rules in place to allow it.

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  • mikeD9888

    Well said..!! Other then final exams how can they not find a way to get a 8 team playoff?? The 4 team means # 5,6,7 will bitch just as much as now… These bowl mach-ups are just not good, Sugar and Orange bowls will be over by Half and so will be the ratings.. but hey Marry Christmas and God bless, win all your games and it does not matter

  • Jim

    “The Heisman Memorial Trophy annually recognizes the outstanding college football player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity.” What are your thoughts on why the “integrity” portion is being left out of the discussion? Manziel’s arrest this summer. His mid-season pictures with the strippers. You would these would be part of the discussion if integrity really mattered to the voters.

    • NDtex

      It means what we all suspected: voters do not give a damn. For them it is purely an on-field performance issue these days (and apparently only on the offensive side of the ball).

      • irishfanatic

        I was thinking about this the other day, and started thinking back to a time when there was no BCS and it seemed as though Heisman winners were almost clear cut, or at least down to two candidates. So here’s a question for you Tex. In your opinion, does Manti win the Heisman 20+ years ago in the same circumstances? Or, do you think the blinders were the same? I feel as though it would have been even harder for him to win back then because a defensive player was almost unheard of as a candidate. However, I think they would have taken the integrity part of the award more seriously, and given it’s due weight in their decision making process.

        • NDtex

          I don’t think it’s a function of the BCS, but more a function of just how much football you can watch on TV now. Other winners were more clear cut because that’s who you saw on TV all the time.

          Perhaps Te’o gets more of an edge in that case, but Manziel’s performance against Alabama would’ve certainly been nationally televised as well. So perhaps we really don’t see much of a change.

          Plus, there is still just the fact that the voters are dumb. Some still refuse to vote for anyone but a senior. Others stick to offense. This is how people like Ball get a vote for no good reason.

          • irishfanatic

            I was actually using the BCS era as a measure of time, but I agree that it isn’t a function of it as well. And yes, I agree that there are a ton of voters out there that are just flat out stupid. The vote for Ball goes a step further, in that it’s damn near comical. I think the exposure thing you alluded to is probably the biggest difference between selecting the Heisman finalists now, and say, 25 years ago.

  • Irish96

    Here’s the problem with NIU getting into the Orange Bowl: The voters are the ones that put them there. Yes, there was an unranked conference champ, but NIU still wouldn’t have gotten in if they weren’t ranked 16th or higher. Can anybody say with a straight face that NIU is the 16th best team in the country? The only BCS conference team they beat was Kansas! Sagarin has their strength of schedule at 127th! That means there were quite a few FCS teams that played a tougher schedule. They only beat 3 teams in the FBS with winning records (Ball State, Toledo, and Kent State). I’m not blaming NIU, and I’m not even blaming the BCS system. But I defy any voter who put NIU at 16th or higher to defend that ranking.

    • NDtex

      It isn’t just voters, three computers had NIU 16 or higher (one ranking of 12 tossed), one had them 21, another 25, and only one didn’t rank them (tossed). That put them with an average of 19.

      Louisville on the other had four computers leaving them out of the top 25, meaning they had only one top-25 ranking, leaving them with an average of 29.

      In short, it wasn’t just the human vote that did this.

      But even if it was, why are we putting a 15th ranked team in a bowl series that are supposed to feature the ten best teams in the country? That’s the real question.

  • Kevin

    “Manziel is full of integrity and deserving of the Heisman.”


  • miked98888

    What if Manziel wins and the stops winning like he does or under preforms the next three yrs.? can someone say Tarnish….!!!! T’eo is just the right choice this year

    • NDtex

      Well, to be honest, it’s an annual award, not a career award. So really, I wouldn’t have a problem with it, no matter how hilarious that outcome would be.

  • miked98888

    True just want the Heisman to be home?