South Bend Report: ND AD Indeed Wants Stoops

ND beat reporter for the SOUTH BEND TRIBUNE Eric Hansen reports that Bob Stoops is indeed the top choice of Notre Dame Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick for the Irish football coach job.

Bob Stoops Doesn't Deny Interest In Notre Dame

A university source (I know I hate that, but I have to) has Oklahoma’s Bob Stoops at the very top of ND athletic director Jack Swarbrick’s wish list.

Hansen notes the possibilities “He’s Irish. He’s Catholic. He’s Midwestern. … There are rumors that Oklahoma athletic director Joe Castiglione, with whom Stoops has a strong relationship, may be in the mix at Michigan. Breaking in a new AD may not be all that appealing to Stoops. Stoops’ twin boys and daughters love Norman, Okla., and have passed the age when moving is no big deal.

Hansen’s only negative: “Wife Carol is a powerhouse in the cosmetics business for Mary Kay.

Apparently Hansen hasn’t seen the women of South Bend (My father, brother and cousin all went there, I know.)

Recently, the CHICAGO TRIBUNE floated the possibility that Notre Dame is interested in Stoops, and here was the coach’s response:

“There’s nothing to talk about. Notre Dame has a coach and I’ve got a great job and you know, people just make stuff up. I don’t need to comment on that. If there’s some basis to anything I’d gladly comment on it, but just some guy makes something up, I don’t need to comment on that stuff.”

That rhetoric should alarm OU fans. Far from a denial.

Hansen has four other candidates, and Brian Kelly isn’t as prominent on Swarbrick’s list as you might think.

Second on the list Hansen drew up was Texas defensive coordinator Will Muschamp, who is also the ‘Horns ‘coach-in-waiting.’ Total non-sequitur which could perhaps mean Swarbrick has a personal like for Muschamp. But I can’t fathom ND going after a guy with zero head coaching experience.

Also mentioned at TCU’s Gary Patterson and UC’s Brian Kelly. Patterson’s background is in no way congruent to coaching at South Bend, Indiana, while Kelly seems like a logical fit.

Unless Swarbrick is a contrarian who wants to make a name for himself by making a darkhorse hire, it appears Hansen is saying Stoops is the top choice, and Kelly will be the consolation prize.

With the disastrous last three hires, I have to believe that Swarbrick will be pragmatic in his approach - with Kelly the likely new coach.

Well now, that was easy - and you didn’t even have to give me your credit card number.