Should Charlie Weis be coaching Notre Dame next season?

Four Corners

November 11, 2009

Enough is enough
Desmond Conner, Hartford Courant

Charlie Weis, the great offensive mind, went to South Bend apparently thinking defense was an afterthought. That was apparent Saturday in an embarrassing 23-21 loss to Navy.

The Midshipmen gained almost 350 yards on 57 carries. Weis showed his arrogance, didn't change up a thing defensively, not even after halftime, and the Midshipmen made the Irish pay.

So, yet another promising season has fallen short of expectations. . It has gone on long enough.

If Notre Dame falls at Pittsburgh on Saturday, which I'm expecting, Weis' overall record at the school would be 35-25, the same one that got Bob Davie fired in 2001. The Irish would be 6-4, too, a loss away from the mark Ty Willingham posted when he was fired in 2004, giving way to you know who.

dconner@tribune.com

3 weeks to save job
Brian Hamilton, Chicago Tribune

Starting Saturday, Charlie Weis embarks on a three-week audition of his own making. Thanks to another unconscionable loss to Navy, his Notre Dame legacy is distilled into 180 minutes. Consistent play will save him. Underwhelming efforts will undo him.

Giving Weis the 2009 season was reasonable. It was his roster, with ample experience, facing a friendly schedule. Weis would either prove his worth or have enough rope to hang himself.

He can't be fired for a nine-win season that matches objective expectations. He can't be retained for a six- or seven-win year that represents zero progress. The in-between is treacherously murky. But most likely: Notre Dame has clarity by Thanksgiving weekend on a future with or without its current head coach.

bhamilton@tribune.com

Beat Pitt or hit the road
Chris Dufresne, Los Angeles Times

The answer as to whether Charlie Weis will be coaching at Notre Dame next season will likely be answered Saturday when he faces the most important game in his five-year tenure. If the Irish lose at No. 8 Pittsburgh, a very real possibility, it will eliminate the chance of meeting the nine-win regular-season threshold thought to be required for Weis keeping his job. The tricky part is whether Notre Dame wants to eat the rest of a lucrative contract in tough economic times. Also, six of Notre Dame's eight games have been decided in the final minute, so this is a 6-3 team that could be 9-0 or 2-7. Does Weis deserve to be back? Ask me after Saturday. And even victory won't save Weis if he loses on the rebound to Connecticut and Stanford. Weis has coached in a lot of close games this year, but now his margin for error is almost zero.

cdufresne@tribune.com

It's time to move on
Andrea Adelson, Orlando Sentinel

Charlie Weis' time is up. He has been given five years to return Notre Dame to national prominence, and has failed. Sure his early results looked promising, but this season is ending the way it has of late - in disappointment.

The schedule was set up for at least 10 wins, especially with incredibly talented offensive players Jimmy Clausen and Golden Tate. Losing on the road to Michigan and at home to Navy is simply unacceptable. If the Irish lose to Pittsburgh on Saturday, then Weis would have the same winning percentage as Tyrone Willingham when he got fired (.583) and the same record as Bob Davie when he got canned (35-25).

Notre Dame isn't going to get Florida coach Urban Meyer, so Irish eyes should be focused on Cincinnati's Brian Kelly, who is 30-6 in three seasons with the Bearcats.

aadelson@tribune.com

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