Monday, November 30, 2009

Weis Out/Stoops Claims to Be Staying at OU

Charlie Weis was let go as Notre Dame's head football coach on Monday, ending a disasterous collapse over the last month in South Bend. Weis' finishes his career at Notre Dame after dropping his final four games and losing his previous ten games against ranked opponents.

The firing is no real surprise to the college football world, many expected anything less than a BCS berth would be reason enough for firing Weis this season. After putting up a 6-6 record in the regular season for the second year in a row the final decision for Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick seemed like a very easy one.

The rumors will now begin to fly as to who the next Notre Dame head football coach will be. Urban Meyer is the dream coach for the position, but why would he leave Florida? He said as recently as a week ago that he would be Florida's football coach for as long as they would have him. I wish for him but he has no real reason to come to South Bend.

Bob Stoops' name has been flying around as a candidate as well, Stoops has already told reporters in Oklahoma that he will be the head football coach at OU in 2010. A little more of a chance than Urban Meyer I suppose but the likelihood still far from great. (Rumor has it, no confirmation as of yet but Bob Stoops reportedly won't interview for the opening.)

Cincinnati's Brian Kelly is another name being thrown around, he seems the most likely of the bunch to take the job. He has won everywhere he has coached this far (Grand Valley State, Central Michigan, and Cincinnati), we will see what he decides if offered.

The next few days will be interesting and very important for the future of Notre Dame football. There have been three bad hires for head coach now in a row, there is a desperate need for a quality college head coach. Many will want to bring in a Jon Gruden type but I would prefer a college coach above anything else. For whatever reason, coaching at the collegiate level is different than in the pro's.

As of 4pm est there were no plans for Charlie Weis to address the media. A press conference with Jack Swarbrick and Rob Ianello is scheduled for 6pm est today. Reaction to that everything else to come in the coming days.

The official release from the university:

Weis will not be retained as Notre Dame football coach

University of Notre Dame head football coach Charlie Weis will not be retained, University director of athletics Jack Swarbrick announced today (Nov. 30).

“We have great expectations for our football program, and we have not been able to meet those expectations,” Swarbrick said. “As an alumnus, Charlie understands those goals and expectations better than most, and he’s as disappointed as anyone that we have not achieved the desired results.”

Swarbrick recommended the dismissal Sunday night to Notre Dame’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C.

“We have established an evaluation process for all of our athletic programs that, in the end, results in a recommendation from Jack to me,” Father Jenkins said. “I accepted Jack’s decision and look forward to working with him on selecting a new head football coach who is the very best choice possible for the University and especially for our student-athletes.

“I am most appreciative to Coach Weis for his service to Notre Dame and our community. He and his family have my prayers and best wishes.”

Weis spent five seasons as Irish head coach from 2005-09, with his teams achieving consecutive records of 9-3 (Fiesta Bowl appearance) in ’05, 10-3 (Sugar Bowl appearance), 3-9, 7-6 (Hawai’i Bowl victory) and 6-6 in ’09 – for an overall 35-27 mark.

Swarbrick announced that Rob Ianello, the Irish assistant head coach/offense, wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator, will assume responsibility for football operations until a new coach is hired. Ianello has spent the past five seasons on the Notre Dame staff and previously was part of football staffs at Wisconsin (1990-93, 2003-04), Arizona (1994-2002) and Alabama (1987-89).