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Podcast Episode 062: Talking to the Big Ten Network’s “Coach”

Gerry DiNardo from Big Ten Network talks Ohio State, Joe Paterno and Nebraska’s importance to the conference

The “Coach” talks Buckeyes, Fickell, Nebraska and the Big Ten’s rise to dominance, and Joe Paterno. Image source: Big Ten Network

It has been a busy week on the podcast and radio show as we have been discussing the Big Ten all week. So what better way to wrap things up than with a conversation with Big Ten Network studio analyst Gerry DiNardo?

“Coach” was kind enough to stop by for a bit to discuss the path of Luke Fickell and what can be expected of him this upcoming season as the interim head coach at Ohio State. Certainly a theme this week has been the uncertainty surrounding the Buckeyes and Fickell is clearly untested as he will be making his head coaching debut this season. DiNardo shares some initial reaction to Fickell’s introductory press conference at the beginning of the week and explains why he wanted to see a little more out of the new coach. We also touch on Terrelle Pryor’s impact on the program.

With Ohio State being such a hot-button topic over the past couple of months and with debates focusing on the NCAA rule book I thought it would be a waste not to ask a former college football coach about his feelings on the rules. DiNardo somewhat agrees with former Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden with the idea that it is nearly impossible to run a 100% clean program with secondary violations sometimes being committed without thinking (see Boise State tennis). I also got DiNardo’s opinions on the social networking scene and how he would handle it if he were coaching today.

Click to visit the Big Ten Network website.

In addition to Ohio State and NCAA rules we also touch on Joe Paterno’s impact on college football as DiNardo reflects on his opinions of Paterno from when he was being recruited to play college football (DiNardo played for Notre Dame but still thinks highly of Paterno, a fellow Brooklyn native). With this being the final year on Paterno’s contract the question will be more discussed than ever before with regard to his 2012 status. We discussed Paterno’s future a couple times this week with Ty Hildenbrandt from The Solid Verbal and Stephen Prather from Coaches By The Numbers. Give those podcasts a listen as well for more Paterno talk.

We wrap up with a look at Nebraska’s importance to the Big Ten. I think everyone associated with the conference is excited to welcome Nebraska to the Big Ten from the Big 12 and DiNardo brings up some other reasons that Nebraska is vital to the conference. Quite simply, DiNardo believes the Cornhuskers can put the Big Ten over the top in terms of level of competition and conference supremacy compared to the SEC, which has been the undisputed king of conferences for the past few years.

And if you were wondering, DiNardo and Mike Hall are not best friends, but they’re cool. Maybe we can bring Hall on sometime for a rebuttal (if you are reading this Hall, consider this your invitation to the podcast).

Have a listen to the podcast below, then make sure you are subscribed in iTunes, and following the show on Get Glue! Follow DiNardo and the Big Ten Network on Twitter (follow me too). And don’t forget, this podcast can be heard at anytime on Stitcher Radio!

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About the Author

Kevin McGuire
Contributor to College Football Talk on Also a contributor to Athlon Sports and The Comeback. Member of Football Writers Association of America and National Football Foundation. Follow on Twitter @KevinOnCFB.
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