Brian Kelly's bigger workload was on display already Friday night, when the Notre Dame head coach presented not one, not two, not three, but four different awards during the Irish's awards banquet, named "The Echoes" for the second straight year.
He did say on Saturday, however, that he does not expect any more of his assistants to leave, and that was seemingly confirmed shortly afterward by defensive line coach Mike Elston, whose first-ever tweet was the announcement he's staying at Notre Dame. (There had been some chatter that he could follow Bob Diaco to UConn to become the Huskies' defensive coordinator.)
Staying at ND. Love thee Notre Dame. Go Irish.
— Mike Elston (@CoachMikeElston) December 14, 2013
As for the awards show, TJ Jones took home team MVP honors in a team vote that Kelly said wasn't even close. (Yours truly had predicted Jones as the winner beforehand, just as he had predicted the correct final score of the Stanford game.)
As for the big winners on Friday...
Around the Bend award (presented by Ernest Jones): Tyler Stockton (Community service)
Father Lange Iron Cross Award (presented by Paul Longo): Carlo Calabrese (Weight room)
Special teams player of the year (presented by Scott Booker): Kyle Brindza
Nick Pietrosante Award: Chris Watt and Dan Fox (Courage, loyalty, teamwork, dedication)
Defensive lineman of the year (presented by Mike Elston): Stephon Tuitt
Offensive lineman of the year (presented by Harry Hiestand): Zack Martin
Rockne Student-Athlete award (presented by David Peloquin): Jarrett Grace
Next Man In award (presented by Brian Kelly): Kona Schwenke
Offensive player of the year (presented by Brian Kelly): Tommy Rees
Defensive player of the year (presented by Brian Kelly): Prince Shembo
MVP (presented by Brian Kelly): TJ Jones
There was also in-show fan voting for best hit and best catch honors, which went to Tuitt and Jones for their plays against USC.