Weis hopes next coach has more success than he did

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) - Five days after being fired by Notre Dame, Charlie Weis said Saturday he wants to do right by his alma mater.

"I really want to root for them, not against them, and I want the next coach to be more successful than me," Weis told the South Bend Tribune and several other local media outlets that he invited as he spoke for the first time since the firing.

Weis, who had not talked to the media since two days before Thanksgiving, said he knew his job was in jeopardy after a 23-21 loss to Navy on Nov. 7 dropped the team to 6-3. It was the second time in three years the Irish were beaten by the Midshipmen after beating them an NCAA-record 43-game straight times.

He said he felt he had time to recover but knew the double overtime loss to Connecticut two weeks later sealed his fate. He met with athletic director Jack Swarbrick the following Monday.

'It was not a bad conversation. Jack and I just sat down and closed the door. I said, Look it, we're grown men here, where are we?' We agreed to where it was headed," Weis said.

Weis said he didn't tell his assistants because he thought it would distract them getting ready for the Stanford game. The Irish ended up losing their last four games to finish the season with a 6-6 record.

Swarbrick announced Weis' dismissal Monday. Weis finished with a 35-27 record in five seasons, a record worse than his two predecessors, Tyrone Willingham and Bob Davie, who also were fired.

Weis met with the reporters at the Hannah and Friends Farm, a 30-plus acre residential community near South Bend started by Weis and his wife, Maura, in honor of their 14-year-old daughter who has special needs.

Weis said he believes the experiences he learned in his five years as coach of the Irish will help him professionally, saying he is "10 times better off" for having coached at Notre Dame.

"Let's say I go to somebody's staff as an offensive coordinator. Let's assume that that's where this is headed. Not only do I have a different perspective now, having sat in the seat for five years, but that head coach will have a sounding board, somebody they can run things by," he said. "I think it will help me personally. It'll help me professionally, and it will also help the guy I'm working for, because my perspective is so different now."

Weis also talked about how people kept putting "For Sale" signs up in front of his house in recent years.

"I probably have about 100 of them, and what the problem is now, I probably could use one and I don't have one anymore," he said. "I always kept a couple of small ones in my office. What I'd like to know is after I was fired, why were there no For Sale' signs? It was a big disappointment."


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