Chicago Sun Times - Brian Kelly believes he has the best college football team in the country. Kelly voted the Irish No. 1 on his coaches’ poll ballot, the only coach to do so. No. 1 Oregon got 44 first-place votes, and No. 2 Kansas State garnered 14. Notre Dame is third in the poll and third in the BCS standings (Kansas State is No. 1, Oregon No. 2) as Alabama fell to No. 5 after its loss to Texas A&M on Saturday. The reason Kelly believes his team is the best is because the numbers say his defense is the best. And Kelly, long known for his offensive-minded approach, is now a firm believer that defense wins championships.
‘‘The distinction of this team is it’s the No. 1 scoring defense in the country,’’ he said. ‘‘It’s proven that against very good teams all year. If you look at national championship-caliber football, you’ve got to look at a defense. That’s why we feel strongly that our football team has put [itself] in the discussion.’’ Saturday’s 21-6 win over Boston College was the latest example of the Irish’s defensive prowess, as they held a team out of the end zone for the fifth time this season. The Irish — tied with Alabama atop the charts, allowing a scant 11.1 points per game — have given up just nine offensive touchdowns in 10 games. No other team has allowed fewer than 14.
Can’t say I don’t respect this move by Brian Kelly. If you’re going to give a coach a ballot and tell him he can vote for his own team don’t be surprised if he’s riding high after laying wood to a 2-8 powerhouse like Boston College and throws his squad up at the top. I mean yeah it might make more sense to vote Oregon because they put up like 85 points a game and are totally unstoppable or Kansas State because they actually play good teams most weekends. But that’s why Brian Kelly’s a head coach and you and I aren’t. Dude knows a little BC and Pittsburgh sprinkled in here and there is a golden recipe for National championship glory. Unless there’s other teams that just win out and are probably better than you. Then you’re fucked.