Charlie Weis

Wow: Kansas hires Charlie Weis as its next head coach


Again, wow.

Rumors that began to surface late Wednesday — and were dismissed by nearly every observer — have come to fruition: Charlie Weis is the new head football coach at Kansas.

In an announcement made on its official website, KU confirmed that Weis will be introduced as the Jayhawks’ new coach at a press conference Friday.  The specific time of the press conference is still to be determined.

The college football world isn’t the only one stunned by KU’s hiring of Weis; according to a tweet from CBS‘s Brett McMurphy, Will Muschamp, Weis’ boss, “didn’t know Weis interviewed at Kansas [and was] on [his] way to [a] Gator Bowl press conference when news broke [that] Weis [was] hired.”

Muschamp later clarified that he and Weis had discussed the Kansas job over the past few days.  Last month, however, Weis seemed set on returning to Florida for another season.

“I’m going to coach for a long time,” Weis said on Nov. 22, when he was asked whether he would be back at Florida next season. “I’m not… my wife says I can’t quit. That’s not even… remember I have a kid who is a freshman in college here. Remember the reasons why I came here. So, I’ll be here for a while, unless you’re trying to get rid of me. No, he didn’t get free tuition if you were wondering.”

That, obviously, was before the KU job came open after the firing of Turner Gill.

Weis spent last season as Florida’s offensive coordinator — it’s very likely you’ll hear more cheers over this hire coming from Gainesville than Lawrence — after one year out of the game.  From 2005-2009, and in his only head-coaching stint at any level of football, Weis led Notre Dame to a 35-27 mark.  He was fired after the 2009 season, spending 2010 as the Kansas City Chiefs’ offensive coordinator before moving to the same job with the Gators.

During his lone season at UF, Weis came under intense criticism from Gator Nation for the underwhelming performance of his offense in 2011.  Hired as part of Muschamp’s first UF coaching staff, Weis took an offense that was 43rd in points per game (29.9) and 82nd in total offense per game (350.9 yards) in 2010 and transformed it into an offense that finished 72nd (25.6) and 102nd (334.2), respectively, in 2011.

At $865,000 last year, and as noted by Jason Lieser of the Palm Beach Post, Weis was the highest-paid assistant coach in the history of Florida football.

Mark Dantonio quickly tosses aside South Carolina discussion

Mark Dantonio

Michigan State has become a national power under the coaching of Mark Dantonio. The grizzled and confident coach has put together a master plan in East Lansing and has taken the Spartans to the top of the Big Ten along the way, capturing a Big Ten title and victories in the Cotton Bowl and Rose Bowl as well as in-state dominance over the Michigan Wolverines. Danotnio is preparing his Spartans to take on the Wolverines this week, but with the new vacancy opening up at South Carolina following the sudden retirement of Steve Spurrier, Dantonio has already been presented with the question about his thoughts on coaching at South Carolina.

He did not seem all that interested in discussing the vacancy when meeting with Michigan State media this morning.

“Coach Spurrier’s had an outstanding career there, it’s alma mater, and we’re here to talk about Michigan,” Dantonio said when asked about it today. Video below from the Big Ten Network

Dantonio played defensive back for the Gamecocks in the mid 1970s, which helps make Dantonio an interesting name to mention in any coaching future discussion out of Columbia. While Dantonio may have played at South Carolina for Jim Carlen, Dantonio grew up in Ohio and has coached the bulk of his career within Ohio and the Big Ten. He is also one win away from picking up his 100th career coaching victory, 81 of which have come at Michigan State.

Dan Patrick: Spurrier brought personality to the SEC

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South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier is stepping down as head coach of the Gamecocks, and that has the college football world reflecting on the impact he has had on the game of college football. Spurrier’s quips at rivals and revolutionary thoughts on where the sport has been heading were always on the mark, even when his team’s performance on the field was not.

Dan Patrick shared his reaction to the news of Spurrier retiring today on The Dan Patrick Show (simulcast on NBC Sports Network). As many have already suggested, Spurrier’s wit and charm brought a refreshing personality to the SEC.