Back in December of last year, Bob Diaco was hired by UConn away from Notre Dame to help resurrect their struggling football program.
At his introductory press conference, Diaco’s energy, enthusiasm and vision for the program won over the room and created some buzz.. Ten games in, sitting at 2-7 with wins over Central Florida and FCS Stony Brook, Diaco has a much more realistic perspective on the situation he inherited, and sounded off a bit during his weekly meeting with the media yesterday.
“When I first came here there was a conversation about ‘building on’. No, this is not ‘building on’, this is tear down and rebuild and that’s what we’ve been doing. It needs it, and it’s still in the beginning phases.” he told the media.
“It’s like a baby trying to lift a coffee table,” Diaco attempted to explain. “Did the baby get upset because it didn’t lift the coffee table? Probably not. But it’s frustrated…you can see it on its face.”
“But we understand where we are as a team.”
Diaco also shared, with brutal honesty, the state of the program when he first got to UConn.
“It was a mess. A giant mess. Now, it’s just a smaller mess.”
“It’s been well documented, because I’ve never shied away from what it was. Whether it be the physical development of the team. I think that’s what was initially so shocking and profound…how physically weak and fat the players were, and how bad their blood work and nutrients were.”
Diaco went on to explain that the roster he has inherited lacked players with a culture of winning at the high school level and the importance that has on the locker room and as a culture.
“I could stand here for three hours and go through stuff.” Diaco says as the presser starts to wrap up, “What is that, five examples right there? I could name 105.”
“But that doesn’t mean that there was NOTHING here. There are talented enough players here to have a good team…we’re just not a good team.”