KRYSTEN OLIPHANT: So apparently Kansas’ main priority in hiring a new head football coach was to find someone who would fit into Mark Mangino’s old coaching gear.
Sorry; it was too easy to resist.
I’m not saying Weis was a bad hire, necessarily. But he couldn’t keep a winning team at Notre Dame, where he had virtually unlimited resources, one of the widest recruiting bases in the nation and the prestige of the Fighting Irish program behind him to help build at least a competitive program. It didn’t work there, so why exactly does Kansas think he can do something impressive with an also-ran program in the center of the country known much less for football athleticism than for basketball prowess. All the money at the school goes to the hoops program, the Jayhawks are in a conference that is imploding right before our very eyes and Weis is coming from a stint at as Offensive Coordinator at a Florida program that, let’s face it, was absolutely terrible on the offensive side of the ball this year.
Couple that with Weis’ recent health problems — you think he would have torn his ACL while standing still if he weighed, oh, I dunno, about 100 fewer pounds? — and the fact that he’s sure as heck not used to the small stage, and I don’t think this is going to end well. Weis made mo secret about his dislike for Kansas while he was with the Chiefs. How will he feel about the state when he fails to turn around a 2-10 football program?
CHRIS PUMMER: Kansas wanted to make a flashy hire, and the did it with Weis. But we all know the big name isn’t always the best pick.
Weis has proven to be a capable offensive coach, even if his last two stops — a year each as offensive coordinator with the Kansas City Chiefs and Florida Gators — left some fans of those teams expecting a little more.
Where I see Weis as being a bad fit is that the Jayhawks had their worst problems on the defensive side of the ball, allowing almost 44 points per game. That ranked Kansas 120th — also known as dead last — among FBS schools.
It’s likely a better offense, where the Jayhawks ranked 111th and 95th in 2010 and 2011, respectively, will help take some pressure of a defense that isn’t stopping anyone anyway. And Weis will have a chance to put assistants in place to help his team slow the onslaught of offense other Big 12 teams generate.
Maybe even give Weis credit for learning from his mistakes with Notre Dame, which included riling opponents by talking up what he thought would be his team’s “decided schematic advantage,” all the while letting the Irish rushing attack whither.
If he’s done that, maybe he’ll table the big talk until he starts winning some big games. After all, and NFL pedigree didn’t keep Mike Sherman and Bill Callahan from being flushed out of the Big 12 this past decade. Only winning will help Weis stick around.