Thursday, January 19, 2012


Coach Charlie Weis a Jersey straight talker


Charlie Weis must have played hooky the day the media consultant visited the football coaches convention and taught how to speak in politically correct platitudes, how to put a greater premium on image than integrity.

Ask Kansas University’s new football coach a question, and he answers it as honestly as he can. If he can’t, he might even tell you why he can’t.

Media consultants hate guys like that. They like more coachable coaches. Independent thinkers put them out of business.

Weis missed the false-humility tutorial as well.

Asked about recruiting needs, he said, “I wanted to address quarterback, but how’d I do? Not too bad.”

When discussion turned to the potential impact of having so much NFL blood on the coaching staff, Weis shot straight. (Defensive coordinator Dave Campo used to be the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys, among other NFL jobs.)

“Let’s face it, every high school kid or junior college kid wants to play on Sundays,” Weis said. “They don’t go to college and say, ‘Well, I don’t want to play in the NFL. I just want to go play in college.’”

Somewhere, a media consultant who shakes your hand in just the right spot three times and uses your name every other second would love to get his manicured hands in the pocket of Charlie Weis: “Charlie, Charlie, Charlie, don’t you know the robotic response there, the one that requires you to cite the statistic about how few college players make it to the NFL?”

Instead, Weis said: “I think that really helps as a resource when these guys look and say, ‘Hey, they know how to get there.’”

Offensive line coach Tim Grunhard, who came to Weis’ staff from his post as head coach at Bishop Miege, is so well liked and respected he figures to do well recruiting the Kansas City metropolitan area. But he’ll bank on more than his contacts to land square-jawed studs such as himself, Weis predicts.

“OK, now you say he was coaching at a high school last year, well, he played for the Chiefs for over a decade,” Weis said. “Now you’re an offensive lineman, you’ve got a guy who played in the NFL for over a decade. That’s a big deal. He can show you how to get there.”

Young athletes dream. Their parents worry they do so at the expense of putting all their hopes on a long shot and don’t grow in a balanced way. Weis has that covered. With multiple dismissals, he showed a low tolerance for bad behavior.

“It wasn’t just academics,” Weis said. “We had over 30 kids on the honor roll, too. Did we have some people with severe academic issues? You bet we did. But there were other problems here as well. Look it, I’m a dad, right? My kid’s going to school here as a freshman. The last thing I want is to read about a kid having five dorm violations in one semester. You want your kid around that kid?”

Like basketball coach Bill Self, Weis believes in second chances but won’t sacrifice the program for the sake of any individual.

“Look it, I made mistakes when I was 18 years old,” Weis said. “I wasn’t completely innocent. I did it, OK? But there are extremes. Those extremes aren’t going to be part of the program.”

Jersey straight talk will be.


KU_Alumn_2000 6 years, 5 months ago

Does anyone know if we have anymore D-Linemen possibly coming in next season ? I know we picked up a couple...but the situation on the line has not been resolved. I love the athletes were getting on offense...but Campo alone won't turn the defense around. We need some 4 star talent on the line.

Andy Tweedy 6 years, 5 months ago

Two JUCO D-linemen and one HS d-lineman. A good start, but the more bodies the better.

Clarence Haynes 6 years, 5 months ago

During his recent press conference, Weis mentioned that with Campo in place, there were going to be some invites on the defense side coming in this weekend.

Ron Prichard 6 years, 5 months ago

This is actually a pretty good article. However, it can't be denied that many of Keegan's articles are either poorly thought out, poorly written, or both. Several times I have read his articles and thought they were either written at the last minute or as an afterthought, as the writing was clearly lazy and uninspired. This article, however, shows none of those traits, and seems well written to me. By no means am I a journalism or English major, but I would give credit to Keegan for this article. I'm still not ready to say Keegan is a great writer.

ShazzyD 6 years, 5 months ago

I actually really like Keegan's articles. Appreciate them while you have them. Those of us that used to follow the sports section of the Kansas City star know what its like when people leave and get replaced by nobodies. The Star used to have an amazing (if not sometimes polarizing) sports section, and now it is terrible. I'm just happy there is at least someone putting information out there.

notigers4me 6 years, 5 months ago

This article showed some insight aboout Charlie Weiss it fails me to understand why this article would be labeled ridiculous.

Rock_Chalk_NYC 6 years, 5 months ago


So sick of the TK haters. You folks just go listen to bland, boring and biased NPR radio all day and go away.

I don't always agree with him but I really enjoy his perspective.

BTW, Tait is great too!!!

Jim Roth 6 years, 5 months ago

The haters are more likely to listen to conservative talk radio, where shouting and hating is encouraged, than NPR.

Dan Harris 6 years, 5 months ago

must be Bushes fault! Keep that crap out of here, this is a sports site nimrod!

troutsee 6 years, 5 months ago

It all starts with attitude, goals, and beliefs followed by consistency, hard work, and walking the walk.

Joseph Kuebel 6 years, 5 months ago

Ahh, per se... Lollllllllllllll, to that effect.

Mike Kendall 6 years, 5 months ago

George Brett, the great player that he was at Kansas City, said of Whitey Herzog, his former baseball manager----"He is brutally honest. Some guys don't like that. I liked it because you knew where you stood with Whitey."

Charlie Weiss is brutally honest. Some guys will not like it. The good players will. Thanks for the article, Tom. Rock Chalk!

lv_jhwk 6 years, 5 months ago

Crist essentially matched Brett's comments when talking about Weis at the press conference.

Kirk 6 years, 5 months ago

Ha -- what could a brutally honest manager possibly say to offend George Brett? "You're insanely talented?"

JayDocMD 6 years, 5 months ago

Been trying to decide why my comment from Keegan's Wednesday post was a "violation of user agreement." Because that thread has died, I'm going to repost my response to having my comment removed.

Was it the steaming pile of crap comment? Or the fact that I likened these articles to car wrecks. Perhaps if I write "no malice intended" at the end of my comment like some do? Sort of like a get of of jail free card.

Whatever the reason, I find it hypocritical for a newspaper to censor free speech. Print newspaper is dead and online media is the only lifeline journalists have. Without the people that frequent these sites and give you repeated "hits" with comments to your articles (even if it hurts your tender feeling) the LJW dies.

Lowell Holmes 6 years, 5 months ago

Maybe it is just because you are a jerk!

LSHawk 6 years, 5 months ago

Good One!! Almost spit my soda out!!

KGphoto 6 years, 5 months ago

I agree, I think they are a bit too conservative. However, a little bit of censorship on these boards keeps it more interesting to read, especially on a sports board, with male-dominated posting. Do you ever go to a KC Star sports board? Dredging through the thoughtless profanity and deplorable hatred? It's awful and worthless to read.

One of the reasons I like this board is because it's not unruly. It has a sense of pride in it. Sensible, educated fans voicing opinions without delving into dark, hateful, venom-laced tirades. If you want that you can have total freedom of speech at almost any other site.

I've had a couple comments removed over the last 5 years. Tell you the truth, I tested them a bit with the Team America love scene. But overall I think they are keeping this forum a little more classy which I'll take any day.

JayDocMD 6 years, 5 months ago

I agree. The KC Star boards are awful. The mindless name calling (like "jerk" - see above) keeps me off those boards.

I don't mind removal of some comments if there is only personal attacks without thoughtful reasoning or a point to be made (see mightyquin.) I know I was walking that line with some of my attempts at humor while critiquing Keegan. I guess I didn't feel that I crossed that line.

ShazzyD 6 years, 5 months ago

Agree. It isn't a violation of free speech at all. The board is private property, and just like anyone else, they want to keep their private property classy and clean. I appreciate it.

JayDocMD 6 years, 5 months ago

I appreciated it too until my comment was deemed a violation of the amorphous user agreement.

I agree that they have the right to remove my comment - it is their site. I was just saying it was hypocritical.

IMO, my comments were clean (I can say crap right?) I'm pretty confident it was not classy and not really all that funny - but I'd like for them to let the other readers decide that.

Jeremy Paul 6 years, 5 months ago

I agree with you 100% KGphoto. The message board over at the Star is horrible--it's like a pissing contest to see who can throw the most juvenile playground insults as possible. In fact I pretty much always ignore the comments on every other website, as they are all pretty much the same as those I described at the Star. But this site is different. I always read the comments, and I usually gain more insight from the comments than I do from the actual article. I think it speaks a lot about KU fans that we can have civil, thought-provoking, critical conversations and debates without having to insult or demean each other. And even though I don't personally know any of you, you are all my friends and I feel like I do know you personally. I like this message board, and if it's necessary to remove some comments to keep it wonderful, then that's fine with me.

Ryan Shelton 6 years, 5 months ago

I favor constructive criticism, but at the same time I praise the LJW staff for keeping the message boards clean. Go over to the espn message boards and it's mostly sophomoric insults from posters hiding behind their computer screens. It's the newest form of cowardice. Comparitively, most of the posters on here keep it classy, as they should, being KU fans.

Joseph Kuebel 6 years, 5 months ago

I agree with the free speech portion, but thought this article to be good take on our coaches B(ogu)S factor. Seems as though our last coaches' B(ogu)S factor was thru the roof...

Wow, it really would be terrible to be Gills daughter right about now, or the past 2+ years for that matter.

Kevin Long 6 years, 5 months ago

Looks like they linebackers coach will be Demontie Coss. Looks like a pretty decent resume!

amatxjayhawk 6 years, 5 months ago

As much as I hate to say it and as many times as Keegan has urinated me off, this was a good article. Refreshing both in approach and content.

CW is refreshing too.

kureader 6 years, 5 months ago

Most of us are anxious to learn more about Weis and to understand what makes him tick. Interesting article, Tom. Thanks.

Jean Robart 6 years, 5 months ago

I just don't like Charlie Weis. Can't "warm up" to him

Bville Hawk 6 years, 5 months ago

That's what we heard. How many times you going to post that?

John Dalke 6 years, 5 months ago

Sounds like the same things he said when he took the Notre Dame job. How did that turn out?

Kevin Long 6 years, 5 months ago

And how many times do I have to say..who ever wins at ND anymore????? NOBODY! Get over it!

Joseph Kuebel 6 years, 5 months ago

His point is that nobody wins at Notre Dame anymore (well nobody wins like they used to, anyways)... I can't stand that comment, "so what's your point"... The point is what I said.

Maybe the point is exactly what he wrote... I always had issues with that comment. My point is that several people who say "your point is" tend to have a bug up their rear.

Joseph Kuebel 6 years, 5 months ago

And good article, Keegs. That's 2 qualities in a row. Keep em coming.

kranny 6 years, 5 months ago

I will admit that the comment on how well he did at recruiting the QBs is a serious "come back to bite you in the A$$" comment. Both Crist and Heaps are unproven consistent winners. Crist has yet to show durability and one good shot in the knee could end it for him. Then what? In the Big 12 you'd better be able to scramble or you're screwed. Heaps fared no better. I'm not saying that they don't have it but before we start making comments about how good they are I'd like to see them top a certain 3 star QB who was only 5' 10" in cowboy boots and also the winning QB in the 08 Orange and owns damn near every record in the book.

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