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Big 12 football: Trying to make sense of Charlie Weis

COMMENTARY — Is new Kansas coach Charlie Weis a quarterback savant about to work his magic on Dayne Crist? A blowhard who really believes there's not much difference between Kansas and Notre Dame? Both?
by Berry Tramel Modified: August 16, 2012 at 6:17 pm •  Published: August 16, 2012

So maybe there is something to Weis' quarterback acumen.

But Weis also comes off as an arrogant guy who was lucky enough to land with Brady at the onset of the Patriots' dynasty. Comes off as a flare Kansas shot into the air, hoping Notre Dame stardust, whatever that is worth these days, rubs off on KU.

And Weis is ready to debate when scoffers suggest the Jayhawks can't win.

“Not so long ago, it's 2007 and 2008, and they're playing in the Orange Bowl and the Insight Bowl and winning,” Weis said. “It wasn't like it was 20 years ago.”

Weis also said that when Kansas called, he considered the Jayhawk neighbors. K-State was doing well, Missouri was doing well, why not KU?

The reason at KSU is Bill Snyder; the reason at Mizzou is the only major school in a much bigger state.

The truth is, Weis likes to talk, like when he said upon being hired at Notre Dame that the Irish would have a schematic edge over every opponent. Seemed like a silly thing to say, and when Notre Dame lost to Navy in 2007 for the first time in 43 years, all doubt was removed.

But Weis wasn't a horrible coach at Notre Dame. His record was 35-27. That's a winning percentage of .564. Bob Davie and Ty Willingham, who had the job just before Weis, each were .583. Brian Kelly is .615 after two seasons. That job is what it is.

And Weis now says he learned some lessons.

“Anytime you go through an experience and you end up getting let go from a job, you kind of reflect and look back and say what things would I do different.

“I can't tell you the number of things that I looked at on that list and said: ‘Weis, how stupid can you be … why did you do that?'”

But just when you think Weis has learned a little, he goes and says something like the Kansas and Notre Dame jobs aren't all that different.

“Really, you might say the expectations are different,” Weis said. “But everyone wants the same thing.”

Sorry, not even close. Notre Dame wants to wake up the echoes of glories past. Kansas just wants to avoid embarrassment before basketball arrives.

That will be hard to do in the Big 12, where even Iowa State and Baylor are playing some good football, and the Jayhawks most certainly are not.

Berry Tramel: Berry can be reached at (405) 760-8080 or at btramel@opubco.com. He can be heard Monday through Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including FM-98.1. You can also view his personality page at newsok.com/berrytramel.

by Berry Tramel
Columnist
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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