Notre Dame Football: Bob Diaco or Chuck Martin, Who Will Be Missed Most?

By Jeff Merritt
Matt Cashore USA TODAY Sports
Matt Cashore USA TODAY Sports

In the last few weeks, the Notre Dame Football program has suffered the loss of two very important coordinators. Chuck Martin recently accepted the head coaching position at Miami of Ohio and Bob Diaco accepted the head coaching job at the University of Connecticut.

Both coaches have endured their fair share of criticism from the Irish faithful, but for the most part they have been looked upon as steady and solid assistants for the program.

Martin has been lauded as having a sound offensive mind and as someone who is very adept at coaching the spread offense. Martin is also a tireless recruiter having served at one point in his tenure as the recruiting coordinator.

Diaco was Notre Dame’s rising star after the outstanding defense he produced in 2012, but his stock had fallen quite a bit with the subpar defensive performance of the team this season, even taking into account the number of injuries he endured on his side of the ball. Like Martin, though, the stories of his outstanding performance on the recruiting trail are legendary.

Martin, although extremely valuable to the program, may be easier to replace because of the level of involvement Brian Kelly has in the offense. Kelly could, conceivably, call the plays for the Irish next season and slowly ease a new coach into the offensive coordinator position. Whoever is Martin’s predecessor, it will be someone who is steeped in the spread offense that Kelly seems to favor.

The loss of Diaco may be more difficult to deal with moving forward. His leaving comes at a very bad time with signing day just around the corner; a number of key recruits were looking forward to playing for this charismatic leader, and as Stephon Tuitt is making the difficult decision of whether or not to enter the NFL Draft. Having to play for a new coordinator may ultimately impact Tuitt’s decision.

In addition to these concerns, questions will abound about the fit of the present players and recruits to the schemes and tactics of Diaco’s predecessor.

No names have been offered as permanent successors for either vacancy at this time.

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