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DP: Does it take longer to build a great offense or a great defense?
BK: Defense. Because you're building it inside-out. You start with the ability to stop the run. The NFL draft [showed] the value of a defensive tackle, so those are the guys that everyone is fighting for in the recruiting process.
DP: Given Notre Dame's history and tradition, are you facing unrealistic expectations?
BK: I wouldn't have taken this job if I thought it was a setup for failure. I would have stayed at Cincinnati, and we would have kept winning football games. The expectations are real—Notre Dame has the opportunity to recruit nationally, we've got a great brand, a great tradition.
DP: Why do I keep hearing Notre Dame needs to join a conference?
BK: Our Olympic sports. If something happens to the Big East, where do those other sports play? Notre Dame football can stand on its own as an independent, but I think that [decision] is obviously above my pay grade. For me, if you just want to talk about football, I want to be independent. I want to play USC, I want to play Army in Yankee Stadium, I want to go to Dublin in two years.
DP: Do you think that kids want to play in a conference?
BK: Ask Texas if they'd like to go to Iowa State every other year. Look, I could take our football team anywhere in the country, and that is attractive to a young man if he knows he can play in different destinations. I think the destinations of a conference affiliate can get worn and old, and in the recruiting process I can pitch national, and that helps us.
DP: Who are you playing in Dublin?
BK: We're going to play Navy in Dublin. You're invited. I'll buy you a Guinness.