Bruce Feldman of the Athletic included Penn State defensive coordinator Manny Diaz on a list of replacement candidates for Mike Elko at Duke Monday.
Feldman notes “one former ACC head coach whom [the Athletic hears] Duke may pursue is Penn State defensive coordinator Manny Diaz.”
Mike Elko left for A&M and Duke has another coaching search. JMU’s Curt Cignetti may make sense, but there’s also a bunch of top coordinators who may be in play: Penn State’s Manny Diaz, Ohio State’s Jim Knowles & FSU’s Alex Atkins.https://t.co/uQTTbyPe32https://t.co/uQTTbyPe32
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) November 27, 2023
Never miss a Penn State Headline by Signing up for NittanyCentral’s FREE Daily Morning Update E-Mail Newsletter
Nicole Auerback added fuel to the Diaz to Duke rumors, reporting Wednesday evening that the Blue Devils are interested in bringing him to Durham.
Among those in the mix at Duke are Penn State DC Manny Diaz, NC State DC Tony Gibson and Ohio State DC Jim Knowles, source tells @TheAthletic.
— Nicole Auerbach (@NicoleAuerbach) November 30, 2023
This season, Penn State’s defense under Diaz ranks first in the nation in total defense, sacks, opponent first downs, passing touchdowns allowed, and rushing yards per play and ranks second in the nation in turnovers gained, passing yards allowed, rushing yards allowed, and tackles for a loss.
Diaz was a semifinalist for the Broyles Award this season and should get plenty of attention in the coaching market.
Feldman lists Diaz along with Ohio State’s Jim Knowles, Tulsa’s Steve Spurrier Jr., Florida State’s Alex Atkins, James Madison’s Curt Cignetti, and Marshall’s Charles Huff.