University of Notre Dame assistant head coach/defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Bob Diaco.

Bob Diaco Named Broyles Award Finalist

Nov. 30, 2012

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – University of Notre Dame assistant head coach/defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Bob Diaco has been named one of five finalists for the Broyles Award, announced recently by The Rotary Club of Little Rock.

Notre Dame struggled mightily on the defensive side of the football over the three years (2007-09) preceding the arrival of Diaco. As improved as the Irish clearly are on that side of the ball, here is an incredible comparison to understand exactly how far the group has had to come:

Category                           2010-2012     2007-2009Points Allowed/Game                17.3          25.5First Downs Allowed/Game           18.1          19.5Rushing First Downs Allowed/Game   6.8           8.9Yards Allowed per Rush             3.7           4.4Rushing Yards Allowed/Game         125.3         165.7Rushing Touchdowns Allowed/Game    0.7           1.5Passing Yards Allowed/Completion   10.3          11.9Passing Touchdowns Allowed/Game    1.1           1.4Total Yards Allowed/Play           4.9           5.3Total Yards Allowed/Game           330.7         360.7Sacks/Game                         2.3           1.8

Diaco’s defense ranks among the top 15 in the Football Bowl Subdivision in 16 different categories.

Category                           Stats         NCAA RankRed-Zone TDs Allowed Percentage    24.24%        1stPoints Allowed Per Red-Zone Trip   2.9           1stRushing TDs Allowed                2             1stTotal Red-Zone TDs Allowed         8             1stRed-Zone Rushing TDs Allowed       2             1stPassing Yards/Completion           9.7           2ndScoring Defense                    10.33         2ndRed-Zone Points Allowed            85            t-2ndRush Defense                       92.42         5thRed-Zone Defense                   0.64          t-5thTotal Defense                      287.25        6thFirst Downs/Allowed                16.08         7thPass Efficiency Defense            105.58        12thFourth Down Conversion Percentage  31.3%         t-12thInterceptions                      16            t-14thSacks                              34.0          t-14th

Here is another list of stellar accomplishments from Diaco’s defense in 2012:

  • Notre Dame ranks second in the FBS in scoring defense – allowing just 10.3 points per game. The Irish trail only Alabama, but Notre Dame has played all 12 of its games against FBS competition. The Crimson Tide faced Western Carolina, an FCS foe, on Nov. 17. The Irish have allowed 10 touchdowns this season (only nine offensive touchdowns) – four fewer than any other FBS school. Alabama has surrendered 14. Notre Dame has allowed 28 total scores (10 TDs and 18 FGs), while the Crimson Tide has allowed 19 (14 and five).
  • Notre Dame has allowed a total of 124 points over its 12 games this season. The Irish have never surrendered fewer points over their first 12 games of a season in school history.
  • The Irish have allowed six offensive touchdowns over their last 10 games.
  • Notre Dame has held six opponents without an offensive touchdown and nine foes to one or fewer offensive touchdowns.
  • Notre Dame has limited 10 opponents to 14 points or less. The Irish have not held more foes to 14 points or less in a single season since 1921.
  • Notre Dame has limited five different opponents to single-digit scoring efforts, including No. 10 Michigan State (3), No. 18 Michigan (6), Miami (3), Boston College (6) and Wake Forest (0). The five such games in 2012 surpassed the combined total of the previous four seasons (2008-11).
  • Notre Dame has not held more than five foes in a single season to single digits since 1976 (six).
  • Notre Dame’s defense has allowed two offensive touchdowns or less in 24 of its last 29 games. The Irish have actually allowed one offensive touchdown or less in 15 of those outings, including nine of the 12 regular season games in 2012.
  • Only 11 defenses in Notre Dame history have allowed fewer points/game than the 2012 edition. The Irish have not limited their foes to fewer points/game since 1980 (10.1 points/game).
  • Notre Dame limited eight of its regular season opponents (Michigan State, Michigan, Miami, Stanford, Oklahoma, Boston College, Wake Forest and USC) to either its lowest or tied for lowest scoring output of the season.
  • Notre Dame’s opponents have started 113 different drives inside their own 40-yard line this season and managed two touchdowns (one by Navy in the season opener and one by USC in the regular season finale).
  • Notre Dame remains the only team in the FBS to not allow a touchdown drive longer than 75 yards. In fact, no other FBS school has even allowed less than two such drives.
  • Notre Dame ranks sixth in the FBS in total defense, allowing 287.25 yards/game. The Irish have not limited their opponents to under 300 total yards/game since 1996 when Notre Dame allowed just 270.0 yards/game.
  • Notre Dame has limited nine opponents to 300 yards of total offense or less. While Alabama has limited 10 opponents to 300 yards of total offense or less this season, no team has limited more FBS schools to below the 300 total yards barrier than the Irish (nine).
  • Notre Dame’s defense has allowed two rushing touchdowns in 2012 (and the first did not come until the eighth game of the year against No. 8 Oklahoma on Oct. 27). The Irish were the only team in the FBS that did not allow a rushing touchdown over their first seven games of the season. Notre Dame still leads the FBS in fewest rushing touchdowns allowed.
  • Notre Dame has allowed just six rushes of 20 yards or longer and only three longer than 30 yards this season. The longest touchdown run against the Irish this season is 16 yards by Ray Graham of Pittsburgh. He also has the two longest runs overall (55 and 48) against Notre Dame this year.
  • Notre Dame ranks fifth in the FBS in rushing defense, allowing 92.42 yards on the ground/game. The Irish have not limited their opponents to under 100 yards rushing/game since 2004 when Notre Dame allowed a paltry 88.2. In fact, the Irish have finished just four seasons in the last 30 years with a rushing defense below 100 yards/game (2004, 2002, 1993 and 1982).
  • Notre Dame has held eight different opponents to under 100 yards rushing this season.
  • Notre Dame’s opposition managed only two touchdowns in 18 red-zone opportunities to open the season and just eight touchdowns in 33 trips over the course of the entire season.
  • Notre Dame leads the FBS in fewest red-zone touchdowns allowed (eight), fewest red-zone rushing touchdowns allowed (two), fewest total red-zone points (85), lowest red zone touchdown percentage (24.4 %) and fewest points allowed per red zone trip (2.88).

The Broyles Award honors the top assistant college football coach in America. In addition to Diaco, the finalists include: Georgia offensive coordinator Mike Bobo, Florida defensive coordinator Jeff Quinn, Texas A&M offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury and Stanford defensive coordinator Derek Mason.

More information:
The 2012 Broyles Award winner will be announced on Tuesday, December 4 at 11:30 a.m. at the Peabody Hotel in Little Rock, AR. The Broyles Award is presented by The Rotary Club of Little Rock. The winner of the 2011 Broyles Award was John Chavis, Louisiana State University.

The Broyles Award honors the top assistant college football coach in America and was established in 1996 to honor legendary Arkansas Head Coach Frank Broyles. Coach Broyles had a track record of producing some of the most successful assistant coaches in college football history.

The Broyles Award is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA). The NCFAA was founded in 1997 as a coalition of the major collegiate football awards to protect, preserve and enhance the integrity, influence and prestige of the game’s predominant awards. The NCFAA encourages professionalism and the highest standards for the administration of its member awards and the selection of their candidates and recipients. For more information, visit the association’s official website,

For more information, visit, follow on Twitter at @BroylesAward, and/or Like on Facebook at

About the Broyles Award:
There are few coaches whose efforts have forever impacted the game of college football. Bear Bryant, Knute Rockne, Frank Leahy and Eddie Robinson have set the standard for victories and championships on the gridiron. However when it comes to selecting, developing and producing great assistant coaches, the legacy of Frank Broyles stands alone. Former Broyles assistant coaches who have become head coaches have gone on to coach in 20 percent of all Super Bowls and win almost 15 percent of all Super Bowl titles plus five national collegiate championships, more than 40 conference titles and more than 2,000 games. More than 25 Broyles assistants went on to become head coaches at the college or professional level, including: Joe Gibbs, Hayden Fry, Raymond Berry, Jimmy Johnson, Johnny Majors, Jackie Sherrill and Barry Switzer.

In 1996, the Broyles Award was established to recognize the dedicated, hard-working assistants like those who worked for Broyles, and to date, seventy plus finalists and fifteen winners have been honored. Like many of Broyles’ assistants who went on to do great things, numerous coaches recognized by the Broyles Award have since remained in the spotlight, with 20 percent of finalists and winners going on to become head coaches.

The finalists are chosen by a 10 person panel that may be the most prestigious of any awards panel, representing 10 national championships, more than 2,000 victories, over 70 conference titles, 154 bowl game appearances and 13 national head coach of the year honors. Broyles Award Panelists: Former Arkansas Athletic Director and Coach Frank Broyles, former Georgia Coach Vince Dooley, former Washington Coach Don James, former Syracuse Coach Dick MacPherson, former Baylor Coach Grant Teaff, former Brigham Young Coach LaVell Edwards, former Iowa Coach Hayden Fry, former Oklahoma Coach Barry Switzer, former Tennessee and Pittsburgh Coach Johnny Majors, and former Florida State University Coach Bobby Bowden.

— ND —