Gut Punch: Notre Dame Loses DC Mike Elko to Texas A&M

After years of defensive futility Notre Dame finally had direction on defense under the coordination of MIke Elko.  That direction came to an abrupt halt on Thursday as news broke that Elko has decided to take the money and run to Texas A&M.  The Aggies made a run at Elko in December that Notre Dame held off, but when A&M threw a boat load of money at LSU’s Dave Aranda and were rebuffed, they made another run at Elko.  This time the offer was reportedly too much for Elko to pass up and Notre Dame apparently refused to match.

Brian Kelly confirmed the reports that Elko is leaving for A&M on Twitter.

Elko brought about a defensive resurgence at Notre Dame this year and had people excited for where the defense was heading in 2018.  Now it appears as though Notre Dame could be ushering in another new defensive system this spring.

The news was the second gut punch for Notre Dame fans this week.  On Tuesday Notre Dame basketball lost All-American Bonzie Colson for 8 weeks with a broken foot.  Apparently all of the good luck the Irish had for 2018 was used up in the Citrus Bowl with Miles Boykin’s ridiculous grab and run for the game winning touchdown.

We’ll have more on what this means for the program and where Notre Dame goes from here as they look to replace Elko and salvage the momentum that was built on the defensive side of the ball in 2017 moving forward.

You may also like


  1. What I’m wondering is how do you contend for a national championship when you have this coaching carousel every year? How do you ever maintain a cohesive unit in order to really view for a title if you are losing coaches each year for whatever reasons. It kind of appears Kelly is really hard to get along with. Assistants seem to bail at the first opportunity. I don’t see how you keep recruits not knowing who the coaches are going to be each year. Doesn’t it begin with a solid coaching staff? I understand in Elkos case you can only go so far but how about trying to keep Hiestad or is that the same situation? Offer to good not to accept. I don’t know, seems like all they want is a new year’s day bowl and a 10 win season.

  2. C-Dog, A pretty decent sports writer for USA Today has a pretty good article up today (I saw it online, don’t know if it was in print). The post says pretty much what you just wrote below yesterday, and more. You should read it! It makes your post look like a pretty good (and timely) call.

    BGC ’77 ’82

  3. Frankly, college football is headed down a dark road. The corrupt southern society and the Florida ghetto culture are finally in control. Money flows in the south now and it’s going to be spent on college football. That may not sustain itself overall but it definitely could lead to obvious and rampant fraud among SEC and some ACC programs.
    Notre Dame needs to take its lumps on the field during this time but cannot succumb to that corrupt culture. In fact it would be better for the schools who want some integrity to pull out of D-1 and form another association. In 5 years the southern schools will be prosecuted by state and federal government for fraud and major legal infractions.

    1. The real sad truth is that these guys like Graham, who poses as a fiscal conservative at A@M, and Starr of Baylor sell themselves as Republicans to a gullible mislead Southland. It’s sick as well as corrupt. I’m from an old family of Bull Moose Republicans! These so-called Republicans don’t even know who we Curmes are…but we not only know who they are, we know what they are. The Graham-Rudman Nothing Act! And the unbridled, undisciplined, and unchecked spending even bubbles up from hell into our sports. And States Rights as well as fiscal responsibility are trampled on by garbage flowing upstream from Alabama! Who are the real frauds people?

      BGC ’77 ’82
      La Crosse, Indiana

      1. Oh, one more thing…you can thank the great Texas A&M genius fiscal conservative from their Econ Department for the mortgage/banking meltdown too! That was his baby (and a few others) as well. My father was ND Econ Emeritus and a Teddy Roosevelt Republican to his very core. Those guys made him throw up (literally).

        BGC ’77 ’82

  4. It’s unfortunate that Elko left after one season. I think many would say he was bringing the D side into a direction that hasn’t been seen for a while at ND. I am sure he had reasons to leave and to be frank, if he thought his ND job wasn’t a good fit or to his liking, then he starts to no longer remain an asset to the program, he starts becoming a liability, so I would rather him figure this out now than later. I don’t know who will be hired, but I care less about scheme philosophy the person espouses and more about can the person: teach, coach D fundamentals ( especially sound tackling), and have an inspirational/motivational impact on the D side personnel. On side note, if someone should drive to W LaFayette and ask Jeff Brahm if ever a reason to see the world from the northern side of Indiana would be an option, would that prompt his interest in seeing the world from northern Indiana. Like I said, just a side note.

    1. Storespook – all you wrote is well said advice indeed…but there is no good way to drive from ND to West Lafayette…the road routes were not designed by ND engineers (and sure as hell not by PURDUE engineers!)…they’re definitely Hoosier horse and buggy routes…all of them!

      BGC ’77 ’82

  5. Well David, I’ll check it myself when the University opens next week. It’s possible that ND reorganized the Bookstore in some way that changed it back to an entirely tax exempt situation, or maybe won an appeal. I hope they did, frankly, because I don’t like the feds taxing not-for-profit organizations. If I’m wrong, and the situation was reversed by some legal maneuver, I’ll let you know that I’m wrong, and even give you the dates that ND was paying those taxes (which I know I am right on) and the date when the ruling was reversed or reorganized so that those sales again became tax-exempt…FYI, and I’ll publically retract my statements that news media types claiming all sports revenue for colleges is tax exempt are not telling the truth.
    After all, times change, the law changes back and forth, and I haven’t been in touch with Bookstore finances in quite awhile. But I’ve never heard about any reversal of that case. Maybe I’ve overlooked one. I’ll double check my facts and own up if things have changed.

    In the meanwhile, don’t forget to send me your evidence for your 80% statement.

    BGC ’77 ’82

      1. Why does my offer to double check my facts, and to check yours as well, frighten you David?

        BGC ’77 ’82

      2. He owned you and he’s the one who needs help?

        That’s rich. Take your lumps and accept you got bested by your better.

  6. Southside, Lou Holtz was straight with Minnesota – he had it in his contract that he’d leave for ND if it became available, or so I heard…you can be straight with people and practice integrity if you want to. And maybe Coach Elko told them that this could be short term if the right opportunity opened up…I actually hope he did. But I have no idea.

    BGC ’77 ’82

  7. Well, let’s check who has the facts straight. A statement offered with no evidence may be refuted with no evidence. (Critchen’s Razor…spelling?) So you stated that 80% of what ND takes in doesn’t depend on 7-5 vs. 11-1. Fine. Show us that data… Show me the numbers that you crunched for that figure. All the onus of proof is on YOU…your statement…bring me your evidence, prove that you did not just flat out make the figure up. The burden of proof is on you…it’s not my responsibility to “disprove” your claim.
    But I can prove, as a matter of legal record that ND pays taxes on some of its sports sales…big money too…and an atrocious decision by the court IMO.
    So send me the data David…Bruce G. Curme 9344 West State Road 8 LaCrosse, Indiana 46348.
    I’ll look it over, and if you are right, I’ll be happy to admit I’m wrong, and I’m a jack ass.

    But if you don’t have that data, and you can’t offer any evidence, don’t have the numbers I have, then “you ain’t got that swing, and don’t mean a thing.” So put up or shut up.

    I’m retired with nothing more to do than my old man “get me out of the house job” a couple days of the week. I’d actually like to review your evidence.

    Here’s what I need:
    Parking proceeds…big money in your favor
    Gate…big money in your favor
    Logo sales…big money in my favor…for the year and the year after (retail marketing being as it is…trendy)
    Toilet Bowl expenses vs. payout…big losses in my favor
    Lost revenue when we don’t get into a “Fiesta Bowl”…big money in my favor
    and finally, and this is the tough one to document…all the gifts to the Snite, the endowed chairs, the funded research institutions, etc., and the homeruns…the buildings bought and paid for by families usually who heard something great (to them) about ND profs and students doing something that touched them deeply out here at ND (often on an NBC blurb about “what would you fight for” or its predecessor commercials…many times by people who previously had zero connection to ND…just liked what they heard on TV or at some event, or from some friend or family member. And that’s exactly the mission of the PR, Fund Raising, and Development wing…”to bring ND to the world and the world to ND.” We’ll negotiate how to asses those very tangible, but hard to document exactly cases. I know some good ones…case studies we learned from Frick, Regan, Sexton and others in a course by the same name at the Graduate School of Business at ND. Frick did not write ABOUT those things like your “experts” at Bloomberg’s…the WROTE THE BOOK ON THEM. He was the father and grandfather of PR, FUND RAISING AND DEVELOPMENT.

    I’m serious, David – I’m offering to verify your statement…but you need to share your data. That’s the best I can do. You know who I am and where I live. Bring it on, or turn it off.

    BGC ’77 ’82

    Bruce G. Curme

      1. Ticket sales are tax exempt. Bowl revenues are tax exempt. Textbooks and toothpaste are tax exempt. All the t-shirts, caps, logo stuff, ugly leprechaun neck ties, autograph footballs, play like a champion wash cloths, and a ton of other stuff that is wildly overpriced in the Bookstore…is NOT TAX EXEMPT. IT IS ALL TAXED JUST LIKE ANY FOR-PROFIT ENTERPRISE…and has been since ND lawyers somehow managed to lose that federal case somebody famously called “textbook and toothpaste vs. apparel and pennant” case some 40 years ago. And it all flows from football, especially at Notre Dame of all places, and even the village idiot knows it’s big big money. Why are you continuing to pretend otherwise?

        BGC ’77 ’82

  8. Author of “Champions Way”, a new book by New York Times reporter Mike McIntire, is the latest inquiry into the seedy underbelly of college sports
    Interviewed by Vox on Sept 15, 2017:

    Mike McIntire: “….these athletic programs are part of universities and colleges which are themselves nonprofits. By remaining under the umbrella of tax-exempt institutions, they too remain tax-exempt.”

    So which is the bigger “rag in this example, Bruce? The NY Times, Vox, or the book ?

    1. Every single one of them who are telling you that caps, t-shirts, sweatshirts, autograph footballs, and all kinds of products sold by the Bookstore are tax exempt are lying right into the public’s face…just to start with. ND is taxed (non-exempt) on all of it…just as any for-profit enterprise is and has been for decades. Not an opinion – simple matter of legal record. And don’t insult my intelligence by saying those sales are not big money or not sports related. JACK ASS.


      1. “Fake News! Failing NY Times! Fake News!”

        I doubt you have a “base” of complete fools, sport.

  9. I do not know how Elko can look these kids in the eye and tell them he is leaving for money. I guess Elko is just about cash.
    To those of us who feel,Notre Dame is a special place, it is hard to fathom.

    1. If I offered you the same job you have now but would pay you a million more dollars and you could live in warmer weather with no state income tax……..

      1. Reread my comment above as many times as it takes to get it Burgundy…but that’s just for me. Money never was a motivator for me, nor for my father before me. Personal choice. Nothing more. It doesn’t interest me. And I don’t look down on people who are highly motivated by it. Society needs wealthy people – needs wealth creators! No question. But to backstab and blindside friends for it? I do look down on that. But maybe Elko was straight with them all along…if so, I’m totally cool with him…even happy for him.

    2. If Elko told them that this might possibly happen ahead of time – from the start, I have no problem with him leaving for the level of security he wins for his family. None at all. But if he did this as a blindside, especially to Tranquil – well let’s just understate it this way…I never would do that…not for all the gold in the solar system. But that’s just me.

      BGC ’77 ’82

      1. Two things, sport:
        Your basic ignorance of facts has left you with little credibility here, so assurances of your own moral high ground are quite worthless.
        Secondly, I somehow doubt you’ll ever have to face any similar test in your lifetime, making your talk laughably cheap.

      2. We don’t know exactly what happened and we probably never will. Judging a situation without all of the facts is ignorant. It sucks that he left but we all need to move on and hope that we find a damn good defensive coordinator.

  10. I don’t blame ND at all for this. They offered him $1.5/year which he agreed to. Then rebuffed and went to Texas A&M for more money.

    Good luck finishing 4th in the SEC West every year.

    Promote Lea to DC. Find a top-notch safeties coach and keep rolling.

    1. THey couldn’t offer him his as-of-now-market value because it would be more than Kelly’s base salary….and Kelly is already overcompensated for his performance.

      So Kelly is the stumbling block here. Blame the fraud.

    2. Brad , happens all the time with coaches doing a great job –and moving on up the ladder. Saban started out at Kent State. I would hope ND moves very quickly in retaining Clark Lea in any capacity.

      1. What upsets me is it’s starting to look like ND falls around the middle of the ladder, not at the top these days. We are losing guys to lateral positions. That’s not good.

    1. I strongly agree about Diaco. I’m not familiar with Lea, so I’ll withhold comment on him.

      BGC ’77 ’82

    2. Diaco type D would not work. Go to You Tube and watch the final 1:28 Notre Dame defense shut down LSU —a beautiful thing to watch. Keep Elston and Lea and continue this into 2018. The 4-2-5 rover defense . Watch the video–see Tranquill and Morgan , Okwara , Hayes on the outside with Trumbetti/Tillery at the tackles cause havoc and disruption to the LSU offense. This is the D for 2018–thank you Mr. Elko.

      1. I’m not sure Diaco would be a good idea. I read an article recently on him that the defenses at UConn outside of a year pretty much tanked. Plus he coaches a completely different system that we don’t have the players for.

  11. So Mike Vorel, a guy I respect, made note that ND and Elko had a verbal agreement of 1.5M – the highest ever for an assistant coach at ND.

    This seems like a case of Elko just wanting out.

    1. A&M gave ELKO between 1.8 and 2 million!! ND matched A@M offer the first time around but not the second time! Probably a better offer for ELKO who if successful could get a head coaching position in the SEC!!!

    2. More money, working for a proven/better head coach, with a very legit chance to compete for championships, and therefore the potential to build a much stronger resume to get a good HJC job.

      Nope…he should stay in the mailroom at Buggywhip Inc.

  12. Remember 22 years ago ND stole a young up and coming DEF. COORDINATOR from TEX A&M ( BOB DAVIE )! MAN HAVE THINGS CHANGED SINCE THEN!! TEX A&M a better job now than ND? WOW!!!!!!!

      1. Pot over pills brother…all day long. See, I do love you, David. Peace.

        BGC ’82 ’77

  13. This loss still stings. It’s sad to think but I’m starting to think that ND’s elite days, it’s days of contending for NC’s are really over. ND may be an above average team in the future, maybe make a big bowl every so often, but winning NC’s just doesn’t seem in the cards anymore, and to the administrators, I’m starting to think that deep down, they are ok with that.

    Part of the reason I feel that way is ND is no longer a destination for coaches. It’s become a jumping off point. A step to a more elite job down the road. Even at the HC level. ND is never going to compete for top coaches. They are only willing to pay a fraction of what other top coaches get. And it’s worse for assistants. They really don’t go the extra mile for assistants. Now we can groan about the state of CFB and how it has become a numbers game and a money grab. But unfortunately that’s a fact of life in CFB. You want to be elite, you have to make the necessary investment. And ND does make a ton of money on it’s brand. They are by no means impoverished.

    I think they’ve decided that they’re content to bring in as much money as possible on their brand and be an above average football school. I really think deep down, being elite again is not all that important. First Swarbick made the foolhardy decision to schedule a Shamrock Series game in NY and force the team to literally travel coast to coast in a week for the almighty dollar, then they let Elko go to protect those extra dollars.

    1. C’mon Damian , you can’t keep assistant coaches — as assistant coaches forever–even with salary increases. Assistant coaches from awhile back are the head coaches of today. It’s the same in all walks of life–goal is to get to next step up and if pay scale goes up with your promotion–who turns that down.

      1. Yeah, if they leave for a promotion that’s one thing. If Elko left to be a HC, like Diaco did a few years back, well I can’t fault anyone for that. It’s when we lose guys to a lateral position. That’s a problem. Now it’s happened twice. And there are certain resources you have to go the extra mile to keep. I think Elko was one of those guys. Now I don’t feel that way about everyone, but there is a time you have to go the extra mile and this was one of those. I think Elko was the real deal. And the fact that our defenses have been almost nonexistent for large chunks of the last 20 years, this was one are where if ND was really serious about being elite that they needed to go the extra mile and they didn’t.

  14. Until ND wants to join the 21st century on payroll of there football coaches this same thing will happen over and over!! KELLY is the 64th highest paid DIV. 1 coach! What makes u think there gonna break the bank for ELKO! U guys can badmouth KELLY all u want, but your getting what u pay for! Until ND wants to pay a coach top dollar this is what u get!! Dave is right about one thing ND can pay a coach TOP DOLLAR if they choose, they just refuse to!!! LETS GO IRISH!!!!!!

    1. Exactly. That’s why I think the real, true frauds are BK’s bosses. They mouth off and pretend they want and expect NC’s, but they really don’t care about that as long as the money continues to roll in.

    2. Correct ND Crazy Mike. Now if ND is right to stay out of unbridled, unchecked, unlimited athletic spending or not is debateable I suppose. But it is their policy – always has been.

      BGC ’77 ’82

  15. In the clear light of dawn, a reality arrives:

    Mike Elko, when you move past the veneer of “the law, ” has a much more larcenous heart than Kevin Stepherson.

    With apologies to Charles Dickens’ Mr. Bumble, “If the law supposes otherwise the law is ‘a ass.'”

    For further corroboration, we have the apocryphal tale of Sir George Bernard Shaw, in both his dotage and and his cups, at a lavish
    cocktail party. A sweet, supple young thing engages him in conversation
    her bejeweled gloved hand clasping a flute of champagne.

    Elderly yes, but enchanted also, Sir Shaw offered: “my dear, would you make love with me for 5 million pounds Sterling?”

    “Why, yes, Sir Shaw!,” she giggled.

    Shaw continued: “my dear would you make love with me for tuppence?”

    She retorted icily: “Of course not, what do you think I am!”

    Shaw, dismissively: “We’ve established that, we’re just negotiating price!”

    A&M, Jimbo, and now I realize what Elko is; A&M and Jimbo were just negotiating the price.

    Farewell, whore.

    1. A bit harsh, Duranko. What you get paid for what you do is always a major consideration.
      ND can afford to pay their coaches what the elite programs pay; they choose not to. To be competitive, you got to compete. If you choose not to, then that’s the athletic administration’s choice.
      And maybe Elko would also prefer the head coach and the recruiting advantages at TX A&M than what he found at ND.
      Mike Vorel pointed out in a fairer system, each of those who signed early to play D’ under Coach Elko ought to be released and given the opportunity to go play elsewhere.
      Ask Swarbick, preferably before next year’s Shamrock game in Yankee Stadium, if he objects to his players and coaches who ‘follow the money’.
      If there’s one thing recruits and football fans ought not need to be reminded of it’s that college football is a big business, but winning at all costs matters more at most places than at ND;
      but as for following the money, be it in politics or sports or in NDs athletic administration, that’s the constant.
      Swarbick’s scheduling move this year for November was an earlier reminder of priorities, so you won’t hear Mr. Swarbick open his mouth and comment.
      At least not unless he’s a hypocrite.

      Time to move on, without rancor for one who chose to ‘follow the money’ just like Swarbick did when scheduling the Shamrock game next November, ignoring the ramifications of what that does to his team who now must be on the road for four of their last five games next season.
      January just became a lot busier for Kelly. And I’m guessing he isn’t being paid by the hour!

      1. And when considering job security for him and his family, Elko could clearly see he probably won’t need to load up the moving van under Dabo’s 10 year offer than coaching under Kelly until, and probably not even until 2021.
        It’s a bad deal for ND fans and the players, but “it’s strictly business; don’t take it personally” Hyman Roth, Godfather II

      2. harsh! I should hope so.

        Elko used the kids on defense who signed early to boost his resume.

        You cannot serve both God and Mammon.

        Elko is for sale to the highest bidder.

        I’d love for YOU to hear all the things he said to recruits when he was painting the picture of what they would do TOGETHER at Notre Dame.

        Cash does not obviate commitment.

        One’s sins are not absolved by pointing out the sins of others. Check Christ in Matthew about motes and beams.

        Elko, by any other name, is a greedy whore.

  16. Hope things don’t get worse. Hopefully Mike Elston and Clark Lea stay–keep the 4-2-5 rover scheme going into 2018. The players are tuned into it. A new DC and a whole new defense ? Tranquill is coming back and with lots of praying at the Grotto , hopefully Coney/Tillery return.

      1. Don’t be surprised if we lose them also. Elko might want to bring along some of his assistants, and ND has already proved it’s not interested in matching A&M’s offers.

  17. This is very, very unfortunate. My solution is to move on and Promote Mike Elston for the open DC position at ND.

    1. Elston would be dreadful as a defensive coordinator. He lacks the incisiveness and wit. He is a GREAT DL assistant and
      recruitier, but these defensive coordinators now swin in shark infested waters.

      Clark Lea MIGHT be up to the job.
      The DC at Wisconsin probably is
      Pellini could do it if they put him on Aterol.
      If Lea were the DC with just the same scheme, I’d consider bringing Jeff Burris back. It would be Lea and three firebreathers
      Lyght, Elston and Burris. That dog MIGHT hunt and they would both be savvy and imbued with the Notre Dame culture.

  18. Just another example of the lack of emphasis on winning football games at this university. It’s a tired act.

  19. By the way, David. Your post below saying the dollars are tax free? Either you don’t know what you are talking about in ND college football tax law, or you are liar…pure and simple. ND pays its taxes for football income. We lost a federal tax case on that decades ago! So stop lecturing other posters on athletic finances…you don’t know SQUAT Jack Ass.

    BGC ’77 ’82

      1. “….College sports, of course, are big business; they generate around $13 billion a year in revenue. If college athletics were a publicly traded corporation, it would rank 216 on the Fortune 500, just below Kellogg Co.

        Yet for tax purposes, athletic departments are treated as part of a university, which means they are essentially tax-exempt.”

        –excerpt from “Go Ahead, Republicans, Tax College Sports”, Bloomberg View, November 14, 2017

      2. I don’t care what that rag says about it. Factually, ND pays taxes on the share of sports income that was ruled non-tax exemt in federal tax court. A lot of the income is still tax exempt, of course: a lot of it is not – we pay those taxes.

        David, you have the right to your own opinion. You don’t have the right to your own “facts”. Now maybe the feds are back wanting to get it all taxed. That may be true if that’s what the Bloomberg article was talking about. So what else is news in DC?

        But you need to get your quantifiable facts straight…WRONG that ND gets the same amount of money at 7-5 as 11-1.
        I called you out on that.

        WRONG that ND pays no taxes on football income. I called you out on that too.

        Care to try for three?

        It just irks me that you write to another poster that he “needs a course in finance” on this stuff. How dare you, when you’re the guy who gets this stuff wrong. By the way genius, I do have a Master’s of Science in Not-for-Profit Institutional Management…from the Graduate School of Business at ND, which is precisely why I’m right on both the facts and the law in these areas. Perhaps you should take your own advice and “study up”…take a few courses in Not-for-Profit Administration and Finance. But don’t lecture other posters on this site as if you are some expert in the field when YOU DON’T KNOW YOUR ELBOW FROM YOUR ASS. JACK ASS.

      3. Bruce Gregory Curme
        Master’s of Science in Not-for-Profit Institutional Management.

        Debating the tax finances of US college sports.

        Arrogance, meet ignorance.

    1. “….Big time college sports is already a cesspool of money, and the federal government doesn’t need to be subsidizing 50-yard-line seats or skyboxes at the University of Alabama or Notre Dame, or Michigan or anywhere else….”

      Couldn’t resist that additional excerpt.
      Because you know… being a lying Jack Ass.

      1. Total red herring. You’re wrong factually and you keep trying to double down on documentably incorrect statements you made yourself, and now using some story about some future change in tax law that may or may not ever happen as a defense rather than simply saying “I was wrong on that” and moving on to more constructive matters. That’s why you are a DUMB ASS TOO, JACK ASS.

  20. This is just plain terrible news. Of all the coaches on the staff, Elko is the one guy I think ND should have done everything they could to keep him. But ND has a history of underpaying it’s assistants. Remember how we lost Alford to a lateral move as well, again for more money and probably a better chance at an NC.

    I’m not saying ND should necessarily mortgage itself just for football, but there are certain people on staff that they should go the extra mile to keep on. Elko was one of those guys. He won’t be easily replaced. And worse, defense has been an issue for ND more times then not over the last 20 years. Defense is the one area ND really needed to make an investment in. Diaco left, but at least in his case it was for a HC job. I can’t really fault anyone for someone wanting a promotion. But you can’t lose a guy to a lateral, esp. one as important as this one.

    ND really needs to make a home run on the next DC, and unfortunately I’m just not sure any are available out there that would be willing to coach at ND, esp. at what they are willing to pay.

    Frankly, this just confirms to me as long as ND keeps raking in the big bucks, they’re perfectly satisfied with 9 or 10 win seasons. They are not willing to make the investment needed to take it to the next level. The fact that they were willing to let Elko walk confirms that for me. The powers will continue to mouth NC’s and being elite and all, but it’s all BS. You want to know who the real frauds are, it’s not BK, it’s his bosses that are the real frauds.

    1. “Mortgage itself” ?!? Man, you need to take a basic financial awareness course!

      ND football has been on a reverse mortgage scheme for years…removing the huge equity it built up back in the 1940s.

      I’m just glad I saw the Lou Holtz era. Because it will never be seen again. And ND doesn’t care one bit.

  21. Here’s something to chew on…assuming ND was interested (which I think is a given), to keep Elko ND had to offer him a base salary that would rival or even eclipse Kelly’s. (Note: Kelly’s compensation package is FAR higher than his base dsalary, but basic hierarchies and optics do matter).
    Kelly went 4-8 last year. He was lucky to keep his job.
    This year was better, but largely due to Elko.

    So I’d like to think ND would not even consider any idea of giving Kelly a raise…when really, they should have fired him last year. Abject failure.

    So Elko is gone: If you want to blame “money”, then blame the fact that Kelly’s continued employment could have blocked any offer.

  22. I truly don’t think the unever sitting gives a damn if they win championships. They care about the money, so as long as the money keeps rolling in, those in charge couldn’t care less if ND football wins 11 games or 8 games.

    As for Elko, really really shitty of him to do this to recruits. The early signing period is absolutely trash for a great deal of these teenage kids.

    1. Oh, think of the children!

      Oh grow up. College football is a multi-billion dollar business, and ND football is one of the bigger players.
      And the “kids” are farm league NFLers, not scholars.

      1. Yeah, damn me for not wanting to see teenagers lied to by a slimy snake oil saleman.

        You seem like the type to badmouth a kid on Twitter for decommitting.

    2. Andrew, Those two observations by you are just about right. I especially feel like Elko gave Tranquill a knife in the back, unless he warned Drue ahead of time that this might happen. But it doesn’t alter the basic fact that ND should not get into bidding wars that require endless, mindless increases in spending within the athletics department, and never result in increasing funds available for the rest of the University…meaning non-athletic departments. TAIL WAGS DOG at Baylor, A&M, and a dozen other schools.

      BGC ’77 ’82

  23. “It’s this crazy arms race, darn it! ND has higher principles than those money-driven programs!”


    Here’s the brutal math: ND football makes the same, obscene amount of money at 7-5 as it does at 11-1.
    The principle of the bottom line.

    1. You flat out don’t know what you are talking about David. It’s about where the money is SPENT after you get it…what it is spent on. There is the difference between A&M et al and ND.
      And if you count in logo selling in thousands of stores and online, you are even wrong about the 7-5 and 11-1 statement. Big time wrong!
      You so badly understand it that I’m going to drop it at this point rather than explain it all. Read Duranko’s and my post below and get a clue on this.

      1. Yup. Big difference between TA&M and ND.
        They want to win football championships.
        ND just wants to keep monetizing nostalgia.

  24. It’s very difficult to maintain sustainability in a sucessful program, football or anything, without retaining excellent components. Its easy to see why Elko is leaving ND. Big bucks for sure, but he’s more certain to get better players in his system at Texas A&M than at ND. I wonder if ND made a counter offer to keep him.

  25. Man the arms race is getting ridiculous. A few years back I argued that players free tuition and the opportunity to have a guaranteed 80K after graduation/pro career and chance to be the man in your office was compensation enough.

    Now that The seasons are getting longer and likely going to expand for the best teams. Seeing that players are working full time for college football, watching the head and assistant coaches as well as the institutions get millions….I think its time to pay the players something. If you can give an assistant 2.5 million, then you can pay 25 k per scholarship player.

    I know people are pissed at stepherson and I know he made a huge mistake, but I cant help but think its horrible that this kid is so poor he is stealing from macys while the university is getting huge contracts and the coaches are making millions.

    I know the university uses football and basketball money to help fund other sport programs but I see the money the coaches are making. I see the universitites making a ton of money. Its a huge business! And it costs the universities nearly nothing to let the players get room board food and classes.

  26. Okay, I am distraught that Elko is leaving.

    He was my second favorite defensive coordinator ever after the late, great Johmmy Ray.

    But there is a big issue here “what doth it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose his soul?”

    Remember, football factory FSU could not spend enough to prevent Fisher from being bought by A&M.

    This escalation of football salaries is not in any static state.

    It is getting wilder every year, when you consider that the porcine, mediocre Bret Bielema had a buyout of over $10 mil
    at Arkansas.

    This may not be the case, and I may be begging the question, but is there any point, at any level of salaries or facilities,
    that ND would be correct in saying “No, this is a bridge too far; this is fiscal and value madness and we will no longer

    I was a frosh in Cavanaugh in ’63’-’64 with Conjar and Gmitter in our wing, with Regner and Hardy dropping in as frequent visitors. No Early entries, no training table, no 12 months a year no LAbor day weekend games, no Nike and Adidas camps and no Army All America and Under Armour games. I understand that those days are gone forever.

    But is there ANY point at which Notre Dame must bid adieu?

    And, if so, how will we know it when we see it?

    Go irish, now and forever, on the field and in the golden halls of our memories.

    1. Duranko,
      I don’t think Coach Elko sold his soul. I think the stewards, administrators and board members sold their souls. Coach Elko (and I am just guessing this – I’ve never even met him) was given an offer that would take care of him and his family forever doing the work he loves to do.
      And sure, the opportunity to compete in the SEC was an attractor – if that was the main driver here he would have taken the position LAST WEEK…right? There was something about the second offer that moved him…what else would it have been?
      My mother used to plead with my father to leave ND for just about any state university…where his salary would have quadrupled semester one, year one! That’s how disparate it was then. ND had a golden benefits package, but a nearly high school salary schedule for its teachers…and it was tough for Mom at the end of the month. He never left though – because he was a Marian devotee from head to toe. And we drank water the last week of every month because we had no money left for milk and orange juice. The University paid monthly then, not biweekly.
      It’s a lot better for profs and their families now, but only because Hesburgh wanted a top notch graduate school developed, and wanted endowed chairs. That costs big money…and ND put it out and spent it wisely – not on football coaches. But eventually reality must set in at ND…let’s make it more competitive for the assistants and their families – without selling our souls!

      BGC ’77 ’82

      1. ND costs $66,000 per year now.

        My grandfather also taught there. Would have left if he hadn’t died relatively young. CSC stands for come sweet cash.

      2. Also for “cash strictly cash” and “cash student checks”…old fac brat jokes!

        BGC ’77 ’82

    2. ND is in the luxurious position of making a ton of money, year in year out, playing football.
      Probably 80%+ of that revenue is a lock…no matter how they play, it gets paid.
      So what incentive is there to increase expenses, to then MAYBE compete for a championship?

      Why on EARTH would ND ever consider stop playing altogether?! Too principled to accept the hundreds of millions of tax-free dollars? Really?
      The lunacy and ignorance of ND fandom. Give your head a shake sometime between now and September.

      Kelly stayed after 4-8. Get it? Ding ding ding?

        ND lost a federal tax case on this long ago…late 70’s or early 80’s… in a stunning money grab by the feds. Of course you (being so well informed about this whole matter) secretly knew that, right?

        You are right about this though – to the Administration it makes ZERO sense to make a king’s ransom every year and then stick all the money into football (so we can make another king’s ransom the year after that – only to spend it all on football again – in order to keep matching all the other kings out there. Iterum, Iterum, Iterumque. All so we can keep up with the Jone’s, whose spending limits don’t exist, and for whom, no money at all ever exits the sports programs and gets into the General Fund! “No incentive to increase costs” is right on target.

    1. He did not leave to play in the SEC. He left for a boatload of money and security for his family I would think.
      Notre Dame was right not to match it…but we do need to “up” salary and benefits for assistants – but never to the fooball factory levels…which are spiraling upwards like a NK rocket.

      BGC ’77 ’82

      1. This is why Georgia has a better roster and coaches. Notre Dame continues to be on the outside looking in. First you have to get rid of Kelly and hire the right coach then you pay the assistants a boat load of money so they wont leave. Anything less and you continue to fall behind.

  27. Quoting James W. Frick Late Retired VP of PR and Development at Notre Dame (God bless his soul):

    “Don’t show me your Mission Statement and talk to me about your principles. Show me where you spend your money: then I’ll tell you what your values are.”

    Bruce G. Curme (I was a frequent visitor to the Frick household as a boy and learned so much from all of the Frick family who lived just down the street…what a bunch of fac brats we were!)

    1. Weed legal here? Where is here? Your not in Indiana anymore Toto.
      PS: Good news for Stepherson…in July the marihuana persecutions end in Canada!

      BGC ’77 ’82

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button