Ohio State president Gordon Gee made news Wednesday by telling The Associated Press that if TCU and Boise State go undefeated, they wouldn't deserve to play in the Bowl Championship Series title game because their schedules aren't difficult enough.
Del Conte told ESPN 103.3 FM in Dallas that he took Gee's comments as a compliment.
"I sat back and just thought about our football program and our coach and realized that to start throwing stones at your house, they must be jealous," Del Conte said. "We have a phenomenal football program. ... And someone now starts taking shots at TCU? That means we've arrived."
TCU is 11-0 this season and sits at No. 3 in the BCS standings. Boise State is 10-0 and No. 4. One of those teams could get a shot at the national title should No. 1 Oregon or No. 2 Auburn lose one of their remaining games.
Del Conte said he'd love to put the Buckeyes on TCU's schedule.
"Anytime. Anyplace. Anywhere," he said. "Buckeyes against the Horned Frogs. Tee it up. Let's go."
Gee said teams who aren't in BCS conferences aren't challenged on a weekly basis, so they aren't worthy of playing for a national title.
"Well, I don't know enough about the X's and O's of college football," said Gee, formerly the president at West Virginia, Colorado, Brown and Vanderbilt universities. "I do know, having been both a Southeastern Conference president and a Big Ten president, that it's like murderer's row every week for these schools. We do not play the Little Sisters of the Poor. We play very fine schools on any given day."
Del Conte doesn't think Gee's argument is valid.
"Especially when I start to look at their nonconference schedule made up of the MAC schools -- that'd be Ohio, Eastern Michigan. I had no idea they were going out and testing themselves week in and week out.
"The schedule that we have in front of us, whether it be playing Baylor, Oregon State, SMU and our league games -- Utah, BYU, Air Force -- we have played a tough schedule."
Boise State president Bob Kustra, in an interview with the Idaho Statesman, also took exception to Gee's position.
"I just hope that when he speaks about his research profile or the quality of his university he's a little more believable than he is about athletics, because he's just so wrong on this one," Kustra said.