Notebook: Former Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis becomes one with the media

Eric Hansen
South Bend Tribune

Three years in retirement wasn’t sitting too well with former Notre Dame head football coach Charlie Weis.

It apparently was even less palatable for wife Maura.

“I’m going from bored to not bored,” the 61-year-old said with a chuckle, “and my wife is the happiest person in south Florida.”

South Florida is where Weis and his wife now call home, and being a member of the media is his new diversion.

Coming to a favorite electronic device near you, Weis is taking a deep dive into his second career, with TV gigs on Comcast Northeast and FOX Sports starting next week. He’ll also being doing a weekly podcast soon available on iTunes, among other projects.

“Charlie Jr. can carry the coaching mantle now,” said Weis of his son, a South Bend St. Joseph’s High grad who joined the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons in February as an offensive assistant.

Charlie Sr. is three years removed from his last coaching assignment, at Kansas. He fashioned a 35-27 record in five seasons as Notre Dame’s head coach, from 2005-09. After being fired, Weis was replaced by current Irish coach Brian Kelly.

Weis won’t likely be doing any commentating on either former employer. All of his work is NFL-related.

Weis will start his week by flying to Los Angeles on Wednesday, then will appear on various FOX shows on Thursdays and Fridays, including the radio/TV simulcast of “The Herd with Colin Cowherd.”

From L.A., Weis will get on a plane to Boston. There, he’ll do a two-hour pregame studio show and two-hour postgame show sandwiching every New England Patriots game. Eventually, Weis will add a FOX commitment on Mondays in New York. He’ll then return to south Florida.

“I’d eventually like to be a color analyst for NFL games,” he said. “But I was offered this opportunity, and I look at it as a great way to get my feet wet.”

Happily ever after?

Of the 178 players Notre Dame head football coach Brian Kelly signed out of high school in the 2010-17 recruiting cycles, 37 of them — or 21 percent — have ended up transferring. That’s 24 conventional transfers and 13 of the grad school/no-waiting variety.

Of those still playing out their collegiate eligibility, one of the most intriguing is former defensive end Jhonny Williams, who has now transferred twice.

Because of that, even though he’s transferred down in class this time (FBS to Division II), he’ll have to sit out the 2017 season at his newest home Grand Valley State.

Yes, that’s the same program that launched Kelly’s head coaching career.

There are lots of positive reports from GVS about Williams’ prowess and attitude. He’s now 6-foot-6 and 278 pounds. Grand Valley is ranked No. 2 in the Division II poll and opens its season Thursday night at the University of Indianapolis.

Williams began his career at ND by redshirting as a freshman in 2014. He transferred after his freshman year to Toledo, and sat out the 2015 season to satisfy NCAA transfer rules. In 2016, he played in three games for the Rockets, garnering three tackles.

Here are the other transfers by recruiting class and where they fit on their respective depth charts heading into the 2017 season:

Class of 2013

• Max Redfield (Indiana of Pa.): The player slated to start at free safety for the Irish in 2016, until an August arrest led to his dismissal from the team, is scheduled to start at strong safety for IUP in his final season of eligibility. The NCAA Div. II Crimson Hawks are ranked No. 9 and open the season at home Thursday night against No. 18 Ashland (Ohio).

• John Montelus (Virginia): The longtime Irish reserve offensive lineman is in line to start at left offensive guard Saturday, when the Cavaliers host William & Mary in their season opener. It will be the grad transfer’s first collegiate start.

• Devin Butler (Syracuse): The grad transfer is running second team at cornerback as the Orange open the season at home Friday night against Central Connecticut State.

• Malik Zaire (Florida): The owner of three career starts during his four years at Notre Dame was locked in a three-way battle for the 17th-ranked Gators’ starting berth heading into Saturday’s opener with No. 11 Michigan at Arlington, Texas. Redshirt freshman Feleipe Franks and junior Luke Del Rio were also were in the QB mix, and on Wednesday Florida coach Jim McElwain named Franks the starter against the Wolverines.

Class of 2014

• Kolin Hill (Texas Tech): The Red Raiders open the season Saturday at home against FCS school Eastern Washington, and Hill is listed as the No. 2 rush end for Tech.

• Corey Holmes (Purdue): Holmes is listed as a second-string wide receiver for the Boilermakers behind senior Anthony Mahoungou, a Paris, France, product who played a season of junior college football in California before landing at Purdue. Purdue opens its season Saturday against 16th-ranked Louisville at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

• Justin Brent (Nevada): The former wide receiver-turned-running back is back at wide receiver at his new college home. He’ll be back in the Midwest on Saturday, when the Wolf Pack visit Northwestern. Brent is listed as a second-team receiver in Nevada’s four-wide receiver offense.

• Nile Sykes (Indiana): Sykes didn’t even last a full summer in 2014 before he and ND decided to mutually part ways. The former high school linebacker ending up redshirting at Indiana in 2014, then became a reserve defensive end the next two seasons. He’ll miss Indiana’s season opener Thursday night at home with second-ranked Ohio State and the rest of the 2017 because of an injury.

• Grant Blankenship: The former Irish defensive end was suspended indefinitely by ND coach Brian Kelly in April of 2016, then announced his intention to transfer to Oklahoma in August of that year. But according to an Oklahoma spokesman, Blankenship never enrolled at OU.

Class of 2015

• Mykelti Williams (Northern Illinois): The former Irish safety redshirted his freshman season at ND, then left the university before his sophomore season. He resurfaced at Iowa Western Community College in 2016 and committed to transfer last winter to Syracuse. But in August he was denied admission into Syracuse. He has since surfaced at Northern Illinois and is scheduled to start at safety for the Huskies when they open the season Friday night against visiting Boston College.

• Josh Barajas (Illinois State): Barajas finds himself No. 2 on the depth chart at strongside linebacker heading into ISU’s Saturday season opener with Butler.

• Jalen Guyton (North Texas): Guyton landed at North Texas after a season at Trinity Valley (Texas) Community College. He’s listed as a starting wide receiver for the Mean Green heading into its Saturday season opener with Lamar.

• Tristen Hoge (BYU): The former Irish center did not play in the Cougars’ Aug. 26 season-opening, 20-6 win over Portland State and isn’t listed on the depth chart for Saturday’s relocated matchup against No. 13 LSU (now scheduled for New Orleans instead of Houston). Hoge applied to the NCAA for a transfer waiver for immediate eligibility, but so far hasn’t been granted that. If not, he will sit out this season and resume playing in 2018.

Class of 2016

• Parker Boudreaux (Central Florida): Boudreaux transferred to UCF in his hometown in Orlando to be closer to his sister, who’s been battling health issues. Like Hoge, he is awaiting a ruling from the NCAA on a transfer waiver for immediate eligibility. If he’s unsuccessful, the former Irish center would sit out this season and then have three years to play, beginning in 2018. The Knights open Thursday night at home against Florida International.

• Spencer Perry (South Alabama): The Jaguars open that season Saturday at Ole Miss, but will do so without Perry, who is sitting out the season to satisfy NCAA transfer requirements. He’ll have three years to play, beginning in 2018.

Charlie Weis walks off the field after Stanford defeated Notre Dame, 45-38, on Nov. 28, 2009 in his last game as Irish head football coach. (AP File Photo)