Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Meet and Greet | by Pat

Corwin Brown finally stepped up to the podium and was introduced as an official Notre Dame coach a few days ago. Click over to here to check out the press conference video, or read the transcript here.

I think the main thing people are interested in is what Brown plans to do to revamp and reinvigorate the lackluster Irish defense. As one might expect from an introductory press conference, there were plenty of generalities and coach-speak. Brown did give a few quotes that ND fans can parse until spring football kicks off in a few months...

On whether ND will be running a 3-4 defense or sticking with the 4-3 defense they ran last year:

I have a background in both, both the three-four and the four-three, and what we'll do is look at our personnel. When we get into the game plan, we will see what's the best way for us to be successful as a defense and as a team and we're going to go from there.
On recruiting:
Well, I have a very strong base. I'm from Chicago. A lot of my friends are coaching there now, especially in the public league. And I would like to think that by me being here, but also this university, without me, this university, like Coach Powlus talked about, it gives you an opportunity to move on in life, regardless of football. You take football out of the equation, which at some point every young man will have to do, whether he plays long or not.

What you have to do is you have to see what's going to give you the best opportunity to succeed in life. And I think University of Notre Dame does that. So that's something that I will be able to relay to those guys. Not only in Chicago but also across the country, because I play in college. Played in the NFL and I can tell those guys, hey, this is what I did. These are some of the things that you may experience. This is what Notre Dame has to offer, and I would think that would be very, it would be very inviting to any young man.
On transitioning from the NFL to college:
I think there is an adjustment, because they're younger and also these guys are students so you don't have them all day. But at the same time at the end of the day it's still football. And it comes down to two things. Blocking and tackling and how you play and getting after the guy with the ball. So at the end of the day I would like to think that the guys that we got, those 11 guys they're going to play together. They're going to play hard and they're going to play tough. That's what I feel.
On if he will be a position coach in addition to being defensive coordinator:
Well, the thing that I've done through the past years is I've worked with the skilled positions, the safeties and corners and linebackers on occasion, so the thing that we're going to do here is I'm going to be able to work with all of the skilled positions, the linebackers and the corners and safeties, but I will also have an opportunity to visit with the D line at times and to move as we see fit as a staff.
On if there will be additional coaching changes, or if he is set with the current staff:
Yes, we have a staff in place.
Brown sounded impressive at the press conference (albeit with a vague no-answer to the staff question) but most coaches sound great when they get up and talk about being aggressive, tackling, and recruiting kids that welcome the pressure at Notre Dame. The key will be to watch and see what changes he makes once the team starts spring practice and how the players respond to these changes. Given the positive impact of recent DB coaches-turned-defensive coordinators at Michigan and UCLA, Brown's coming in with some sky-high expectations.