Diaco says fixing UConn’s problems easy, and he’ll do it

Connecticut head coach Bob Diaco, left, talks with cornerback Jamar Summers (21) during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Boston College in Boston, Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016. Boston College won 30-0. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)
Connecticut head coach Bob Diaco, left, talks with cornerback Jamar Summers (21) during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Boston College in Boston, Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016. Boston College won 30-0. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

STORRS, Conn. (AP) — UConn football coach Bob Diaco says fixing what’s wrong with the Huskies will be easy and he’s the guy to do it.

UConn (3-8, 0-7 American) will try to snap a five-game losing streak Saturday when it closes a disappointing season by hosting Tulane (3-8, 1-6).

The Huskies come into the game ranked last in scoring (15 points a game) and 122nd in total offense (321 yards a game) among the nation’s 128 Bowl Subdivision teams.

Diaco, who replaced his offensive coordinator earlier this season, told reporters Tuesday that while it seems the program is a “mess,” that is not the case.

“I know exactly what needs to be fixed, and I’m going to fix it,” he said. “And the fixes are easy. To not have good enough players, that’s a problem. We do not have that problem.”

The former Notre Dame defensive coordinator is now in his third season at UConn. He said he has the support of new athletic director David Benedict and will provide specifics about the changes he plans to make after Saturday.

“I’m very excited about the future, that’s for sure,” Diaco said.

Benedict declined to comment.

Senior safety Obi Melifonwu said Diaco has the support of the players and has made them better as athletes, students and people.

“When I first came here, I feel like there really wasn’t a culture,” he said. “There really wasn’t a brotherhood. Coach Diaco came in and a lot of people didn’t know what to expect. A lot of people didn’t buy in. But as the years have gone on, a lot of people have bought in.

Diaco is 11-25 at UConn, and guided UConn to the St. Petersburg Bowl last season.

He replaced Paul Pasqualoni, who was fired four games into his third season after going 10-18. Randy Edsall was 9-24 his first three seasons, 1999-2001, while the Huskies were making the transition from what was then a I-AA program.

Diaco said he does not read the newspaper, watch TV or read his own emails and has not heard the questions about whether he is the right person to lead the program.

“I definitely am,” he said.

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