Weis meets with media

Weis meets with media

Monday, Kansas head coach Charlie Weis formally met with the media for the second time since he was introduced in early December. He covered a great deal of ground, touching on everything from new player acquisitions and dismissals, to assembling his staff and his philosophy on the recruiting trail. Phog.net was on hand, and has the latest news and notes.

* Coach Weis wished good luck to Coach Self and the hoops team tonight in their game versus Baylor. He's an avid college hoops fan and thinks he may have woken Self up with a phone call this morning telling him to get up and get going.

* Will put names on the back of the jerseys. "Don't ask me what color, don't ask me what I'm putting on them. Let's not go there. But yes, we'll put the names on the back of the jerseys."

* Personnel moves. All three of the transfers into the program - Dayne Crist, Jake Heaps and Justin McCay - he recruited while at Notre Dame. He got one of them in Crist, and now he's fortunate enough to have all three of them as part of his team.

* As far as players leaving the program, there are three categories. Six dismissed from the team outright - Jacqwaylin Arps, Dexter McDonald, Darrian Miller, Adonis Saunders, Brock Berglund and Keeston Terry. For a number of different reasons.

* The next three are not with the team but are in school, as mutually decided - Jordan Webb, John Mabry and Tyrone Sellers.

* One player transferring out - Travis Bodenstein.

* Several walk-ons have been dismissed, all for academic reasons. He believes walk-ons should be treated the same as scholarship players, but if your parents are paying for you to go to college, then you should go to college. You shouldn't be at Kansas just to play football, you should be there to get an education. If they get back in good academic standing, they're more than welcome to rejoin the team.

* Staff discussion. Most recent hire is Dave Campo as DC and DB coach. Will work closely with Clint Bowen, who will be ST coach and also work with DBs. Will hire one more coach, a LB coach. Wants to have it done by Friday because they pushed a lot of their defensive recruits to this weekend so they could have everything in place before they arrived. He expects it to definitely be done in time.

* Retained Buddy Wyatt as defensive line coach. When you talk to young men on team and recruits, you usually get a straight answer and he was very respected by both. On offense, Tim Grunhard as OL coach, Rob Ianello as WR coach and recruiting coordinator, and Ron Powlus as QB coach. Jeff Blasko hired as TE coach - worked with Weis last year at Florida, young guy and Weis' right hand man at Florida. He fits in very well. And of course Reggie Mitchell is retained.

* In addition, Scott Holsopple was hired as S&C coordinator from Florida. Very positive reviews from players at Florida who worked with him. Was second in command to Mickey Marotti with the Gators, who is generally regarded as one of the best in the business.

* As far as recruiting, he identified glaring holes in roster and is using three mechanisms to address them. High school players are most obvious. Fifth-year rule is another mechanism, as in the case of Dayne Crist. Before the year is over, Weis expects more fifth-year transfers before the year is over – once they've graduated in May. Same status as Crist, only difference is won't be there for spring. Final venue is the junior college ranks. This is a hotbed of JUCO talent in Kansas, but not only Kansas - but nationally - they're tapping into that resource to try and fill holes with players a little more ready to go walking in the door.

* "I think by Feb. 1, things are going to fall into place fairly nicely for us." For the record, Feb. 1 is National Signing Day.

* Spring Ball will start Tuesday, Mar. 27. Team will have just returned from Spring Break. He's sure the Monday morning run with Coach Holsopple on the 26th will be most enjoyable to them. He hopes they enjoy Spring Break, because they'll get that out of their system and then get it going. Spring Game will be Saturday, April 28.

* He won't get into what the dismissals are for. "Obviously, if there wasn't a legitimate reason for them to be dismissed, they wouldn't be being dismissed." He doesn't care how talented they are. It doesn't make a difference. There's a right and wrong way of doing things, and they're going to do it the right way. And that's all there is to it.

* You can't make decisions based on how good a player is. You have to make decisions based on them doing the right thing. If you don't, you're a hypocrite as a head coach.

* He knows exactly where the number of players he can sign is right now, but if he brings in fifth year guys he has to save spots. It will be in the 20s though. Originally it was 14 or so, but now it's higher.

* He wanted to address quarterback right away. They still have some work to do in recruiting at QB, you have two veteran guys and you want a young guy underneath them. That young guy has to be ready to compete for No. 2 walking in the door. When you look at the roster, that's the way it is. That's one of the positions offensively that kind of slapped him in the face. Interior defensive line, that was an area of concern.

* The could use help everywhere. There isn't one position on the team he could say they don't need help. That's a fallacy. They're going to spread the 20 or so spots across the roster and try to get help at every position.

* To walk in the door and have someone who carries himself like Dayne does is good for everyone on the team. He's a resource for the players to know who he is. Another guy he's hiring, right now he's a quality control guy but he'll be a graduate assistant - Maurice Crum, played for Weis at Notre Dame. He's already on staff and will end up being a GA for linebackers. It's another guy players can go to, because he was there when they did this the first time around.

* In the case of every player who was dismissed, it was clear-cut. They were gone, and he fought to give them an opportunity to stay. They decided not to take advantage of the opportunity. There are guys on the list who had opportunities to be here, they just decided not to do what's required.

* Crist was not a slam dunk. He was seriously considering Wisconsin. The timing worked great for Weis, in the fact that Wisconsin OC Paul Chryst decided to interview elsewhere the weekend of Crist's visit to Madison, Wisc. That helped.

* Had hip replaced and feels wonderful. It's the first time since he got wiped out on the sideline, in September of 2008, that he feels good. Hips are a lot easier than knees. He feels great, his wife helped him convalesce and he was wearing out the phones. He was probably driving his wife nuts, too, and between him and their special needs daughter his wife probably deserves a gold medal.

* As for the players not with the program but still in school, they're close to graduating. In some cases they have more eligibility left, so they could do what Crist is doing somewhere else. With each one of these kids you try to put them in position to make the best of it.

* As the current status of Justin McCay stands, he'd have to sit for a year and have two to play. They are going to fire a letter to the NCAA. He was released by Oklahoma on hardship to three local schools - Kansas, Kansas State and Missouri. That's where he could have transferred to without there being harsher penalties as far as Oklahoma was concerned. They'll try to get it this year to where he can play immediately. Usually, the NCAA if you have a viable case isn't afraid to be open minded. They don't know how it will turn out, but they're going to try. Would give McCay three years to play three seasons.

* One shouldn't misconstrue Jake Heaps' height as an indication that he's not a pocket passer. He can throw it all over the yard at 6-foot-1. Crist just happens to have height - at 6-foot-5 - as well as the arm. Weis loved Heaps when he was recruiting him as a prep star in Washington State. He tried like heck to get him to Notre Dame.

* McCay has some legitimate reasons for why the hardship waiver is a possibility. (Understandably, Weis didn't get into it and asked reporters not to question McCay about the situation as well, due to its personal nature.)

* In the search for Campo, he wanted to make sure he did things the right way. He was slow and meticulous. If he's going to start off as the offensive coordinator, he didn't want to always have to be turning around to find out what the defense was doing during practice. He wanted to be able to ask questions of the DC, specific questions, and have them answered; someone who spoke the same language as him. That's Dave Campo. One of the things he did wrong the last time was he tried to do everything himself. This time he's passing out more responsibility, and he needs someone he can trust. And he doesn't think he could have picked anyone better.

* Every high school kid or junior college kid wants to play on Sundays. They don't go to college and say 'I don't want to play in the NFL, I just want to play in college.' Tim Grunhard played for the Chiefs for over a decade and now he's here. If you're an O-Lineman you've got a guy who played in the NFL for over a decade, and that's a big deal. He can show you how to get there. That really helps as a resource when you've got staff members who can say that.

* He doesn't think you can look at anything that has happened with Dayne Crist in the past two years. It's null and void. He knew what he had two years ago when he left there, and he's fired up to have him now. That's all he can say. And fans should be, too.

* As he is the offensive coordinator, he doesn't know who will become the OC down the line. He's got a bunch of good coaches, and thinks in the next year or two that will take care of itself.

* It wasn't just academics that were a problem when he came in. They had 30 kids on the honor roll. Were there people with severe academic problems? Absolutely. But there were other issues. He cited players with multiple dorm violations. He made mistakes when he was 18. He gets it. But there are extremes, and those extremes aren't going to be a part of the program.

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