Notre Dame has marched to an unexpected 10-0 run this year, with defense being the primary driver for the Irish’s success. Bob Diaco has been instrumental in putting together a great scheme and pairing talent perfectly with position in South Bend.
The Irish are the No. 8 total defense and the No. 1 scoring defense in the country this season. Those numbers have helped the stock of the Notre Dame defensive coordinator skyrocket with teams looking for a defensive-minded coach to take over the program.
Five teams are struggling on the defensive side of the football, and the current leadership at all five schools appears to be on the way out. If Notre Dame continues to play top-level defense through the close of the season, Diaco could land as the head coach at one of these programs.
The Colorado Buffaloes have fallen hard in the past few seasons. The once storied program has not seen postseason play since the 2007 season, and there is no white light in sight.
Jon Embree took over the program in 2011, and he is 4-19 since. This program is a bottom-feeder in the Pac-12 and will continue to take lumps unless something changes quickly.
The Buffaloes are the No. 118 total defense and the No. 120 scoring defense in the country. They are giving up 505 yards of offense a game. Bringing in Diaco would be a move in the right direction for the Buffaloes.
Central Michigan has struggled to find defense this season, ranking No. 101 in total defense and No. 109 in scoring defense. Defense has been a problem since the 2009 season, when the Chippewas went 12-2 and fielded a top-30 defense.
Butch Jones left the Chippewas in 2010 to take over the Cincinnati program, and Dan Enos stepped in. Since then, the Central Michigan defense has consistently lost ground and is at the bottom of college football this season.
As the defense digressed, so did the record for the Chippewas. Bringing in a young defensive mind like Diaco to lead this team should return the Chippewas to the top of the MAC.
New Mexico State has consistently been one of the worst programs in college football in the past 40 years. A big problem has been defense for this football team.
Since 2009, the Aggies have not been better than 90th in any major defensive category. This season, they are No. 106 in total defense and No. 105 in scoring defense.
There best stat line is against the pass, where the Aggies rank No. 94 in country. This is a team that is hungry for wins—its last postseason game came in 1960.
To get there, the administration needs to hire for defense, and Diaco is the next up-and-comer on the block.
The Eastern Michigan Eagles have been absolutely terrible on defense. The team is currently the No. 113 scoring and the No. 114 total defense in the country.
It isn’t a new storyline for the Eagles, with the team finishing with a top-50 defense once since 2007. Every other season, the Eagles were ranked No. 100 or lower in scoring defense.
Current head coach Ron English is serving the longest tenure of any for Eastern Michigan since 1991. With the terrible defense and losses mounting, his time should be short.
As the Eagles begin their coaching search, they will likely take a look in the direction of Bob Diaco. Defense wins football games, and Diaco would provide this team with a much-needed culture change.
The UNLV Rebels have had sporadic success in the past, but this year, they are facing disaster on the defensive side of the football. The Rebels are the No. 90 scoring and the No. 98 total defense in the country.
The Rebels were slightly worse in 2010 and 2011, with 2010 serving as the first season with head coach Bobby Hauck at the helm. The Rebels have not been to a bowl game since 1990, and that lack of success can be pointed to a void in the defense.
Hauck is a defensive-minded coach and was very successful as the head man at Montana—he finished with a 80-17 record with the Grizzlies. He is 6-30 in three seasons at UNLV, and the lack of defense is apparent.
As the Rebels look to return to the postseason, defense will be the focus. A guy like Bob Diaco would fill the void perfectly.