Monday, March 3, 2014


Column: Weis makes winning moves in offseason


Fresh off earning four Super Bowl rings as an offensive coordinator and ready to tackle the challenge of returning Notre Dame to its glory days, Charlie Weis moved his lips and burned himself with his most regrettable quote, saying his teams would have “a decided schematic advantage.”

Seven years as a college football head coach and 10 years of wisdom later, humility has replaced fantasy.

“I got rid of me because we weren’t scoring enough points,” Kansas University’s head coach said Monday of shedding his second title. “I fired the offensive coordinator.”

Great move.

Weis’ NFL teams had a decided schematic advantage whether a quarterback as extraordinary as Tom Brady or as ordinary as Matt Cassell was under center. In today’s world, running an NFL offense is as different from running a college one as shooting baskets is from clay pigeons.

Weis’ first KU offense finished 118th of 124 FBS schools with 18.3 points per game, his next 120th with 15.3 points. Rice, known as a football program filled with more quick minds than feet, beat both of those KU teams with John Reagan as OC. In 2012, the Owls were 41st with 31.8 points a game, 62nd with 29.6 points in 2013. Reagan, also KU’s O-line coach, has far more experience teaching college blockers than did Tim Grunhard. Wide-receivers coach Eric Kiesau replaces long-time Weis right-hand man Rob Ianello, shuffled to a research job, which I guess means he’ll be researching job opportunities. By firing himself and his guy — not easy moves — Weis put credibility behind his stated reason for accepting a five-year, $12.5 million contract.

“I didn’t come to Kansas just to retire,” Weis said. “I came to Kansas with a vision, and the vision was to turn Kansas from a losing football program to a winning football program.”

He’s 4-20 so far. But he’s coming off his best KU recruiting haul and has assembled his best staff of assistants. It feels as if the boat has stopped taking on water for the first time in years.


Brandon Pope 4 years, 2 months ago

It is refreshing to see a guy like Weis continuously back up his words with meaningful action. I can't predict if these changes lead to more success, although the offense can't get any worse. At least at the end of the day nobody can blame our head coach's failures, if they continue, on a lack of trying. The guy wants KU to be a winner and he is willing to throw himself and his guys under the bus if he has to. I like that in a man.

Robert Moore 4 years, 2 months ago

The OC who is also the HC has a fool for a HC. Combining jobs never works in business and rarely works in football.

Doug Cramer 4 years, 2 months ago

ughhh OK.

KU sports dot com has been sending that message ever since Weis got here. "the boat has stopped taking on water"

Look, before pumping more Charlie Weis kool-aid into the veins of KU fans, lets allow the 2014 football record to speak for itself.

Lets face it, it's not looking good. From a talent standpoint...we lack big time compared to all other Big 12 schools. This last class is next to last and only 9th to Iowa State.

We also have Duke in the Duke. We don't win that game with all their guys coming back from last season.

We could easily see another 3 win season...or possibly a 2 win season if we don't win any conference games.

I thought Weis had to go last year. But I guess we're giving him another chance...

Gene Hart 4 years, 2 months ago

You know what constant coaching changes bring.....constant losing programs! We are not Alabama, Texas or even Rice! Constant changing of coaches, players, philosophies...accomplish nothing. Instead of running a man about SUPPORT and build a loyal fan base that shows up at every game to root out team on! There will always be exceptions to the rule, but consistent hard work will build success!

Doug Cramer 4 years, 2 months ago

Gene - Agree that consistent hard work will build success. Unfortunately the only thing Weis had going for him was his ability to recruit.

His recruiting leverage is starting to wayne...because future players are seeing his results on the field.

Hate to say it dude...but Turner Gil had better recruiting classes than our 2014 group.

Iowa St was smart to bring Mangino into their program. Perhaps Zenger should have been thinking the same thing.

Dirk Medema 4 years, 2 months ago

Doug - You are dead wrong about TG's classes. Darrian was by the best recruit he got, and not a part of the ESPN 300, much less 2. In fact, there are 4 players in this class all ranked higher than the best TG recruit. It is also tough to see where you get that his recruiting leverage is starting to wane when the classes have gotten better each year.

We've also already seen a huge step forward on D, and this season should be better yet. Now for the O to catch-up. No justification for mainlining the kool-aid, but let's at least get the facts straight.

Jim Jackson 4 years, 2 months ago

The 2014 Rivals recruiting rankings does not include transfers TJ Millweard (high 3 star) and Jordan Taylor (4 star) those additions would probably put us into 6th place. If Turner's players were so good they would probably still be on the team or we would have a better record. You are clueless and your negativity is truly pathetic.

Dirk Medema 4 years, 2 months ago

Forgot about Taylor. He could be a huge addition in another year.

Mark Lindrud 4 years, 2 months ago

I won't say they're winning moves, but he's proactive at least to improve the team. The changes aren't so drastic that we are in trouble. The new coaching changes could bring pieces that we need. I will still wait and see, but remain hopeful.

Larry Jackson 4 years, 2 months ago

The verdict is still out on Weis at KU. I'm optimistic the recruiting, and coaching upgrades will translate to wins. I like the fact Weis can point to himself as the possible problem and take corrective actions.

Dirk Medema 4 years, 2 months ago

I appreciate CW's honesty more and more all the time.

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