Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Head Coach Profiles: Pat Narduzzi

The big news today is that the ACC elected to add Louisville instead of either UConn or Cincinnati.  I think this was a shrewd move because Louisville was the most likely Big East team to be invited to another major conference.  This leaves the ACC with two back-up schools (see what I did there?) in case the SEC succeeds in attracting FSU and Clemson.  Frankly I don't know why FSU would even want to move to the SEC.  Their odds of winning a national championship are significantly better in the ACC.  Did I mention that Louisville hasn't sued Father Leahy?

With all of that out of the way let's discuss Pat Narduzzi.

Basic info: Narduzzi is a Youngstown State graduate where he played football under his father.  He is a relatively young HC candidate at 46 years old.  He had stops at Rhode Island, Northern Illinois, Miami, and Cincinnati before taking over the defense at Michigan State.  He has been a defensive coordinator for ten years, and is looking to get his first shot at a head coaching gig.  Most pundits think that Narduzzi getting a head coaching position is a matter of when, not if.

Football Outsiders did not begin tracking college play until the 2005 season, which is after Narduzzi's one year at Miami and his first year at Cincinnati.  In his final two years at Cincinnati, the defense was ranked 86 and 16.  The year before he took over at Michigan State the defense was ranked 67.  Since then the defense has gone 60, 25, 51, 36, 8, and 2.  That's about as linear as you're going to find in college sports given that your entire team turns over every four years.  Oh yeah, Narduzzi's defense only loses two starters at the end of the year.

Arguments for:  You can't deny that Narduzzi is the architect of a great defense at Michigan State and there's nothing to suggest that he can't do the same here.  Narduzzi is pretty heavily involved with Michigan State's recruiting (an "ace recruiter") and isn't afraid to mix it up Urban Myer in Ohio.  We need that kind of attitude in Chestnut Hill.  We need the type of coach who isn't going to back down every time a bigger program wants one of our recruits.  This is a guy who can both scheme the defense and get the players that we need to compete.  If he can sell Michigan State, he can sell BC.

Arguments against:  No head coaching experience.  There's nothing to suggest that he can recruit players for the offensive end and we really need a balanced approach right now after the offense has suffered neglect for so long.  If you're going to go after a coordinator why would you choose Narduzzi over Diaco, whose defense literally just put Notre Dame into the National Championship game?  We need an experienced coach right now, not someone who is going to learn on the job.

Bottom line:  I just can't see this happening simply because I think that Bob Diaco is much more attractive to BC than Narduzzi.  Narduzzi would definitely improve the program and win a lot of games at BC and I would be completely comfortable with him if that's the direction we decided to go in.  If we're throwing around $2 million per year I have to imagine that we have our sights set higher than Narduzzi though.

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