Profiles in Courage: Notre Dame's Charlie Weis

Syracuse football reached depths last season, as in the kind normally reserved for bathyspheres and fish with lanterns growing on their heads. Their badness was a kind of contagion other teams wanted to avoid at all costs by beating them by wide margins and settling the case early. As with any team whose mediocrity approaches that of a disease, the worst thing you wanted to do was catch it: i.e. play them close or outright lose to them. ↵

↵Alas, this happened twice last year for Syracuse's FBS opponents. (They did beat Northeastern, but they are FCS, and let's not count cupcakes as a food group, shall we?) Once it further imperiled the already listing career of Steve Kragthorpe at Louisville; the other time lightning struck, it came at South Bend, Indiana where Notre Dame suffered a humiliating loss to the Orangemen in Greg Robinson's penultimate game at Syracuse. If it looked bad on television, it was actually far, far worse for Charlie Weis, who admitted he briefly considered leaving the job after the defeat: ↵

↵
↵⇥"We talked about all that as a family, and we felt that we didn't want to leave that way," Weis said during a recent 35-minute interview with the Tribune. "That would have been the easy way out. That's not why we came here." ↵
↵No, this profile in courage ends with a coach, freshly stung by the embarrassment of losing to the worst major conference FBS team of the past four years, bravely opting to take his $3 million a year salary and forge ahead, drying his tears with dollar bills and diving fearlessly into a schedule where they're sure to win at least five or six games, and possibly eight or nine if the cards fall just so. He's brave -- now, not Kanye West-brave, mind you. (How did he survive those 22 minutes of South Park savagery? The sheer will to live of that man!) ↵

↵Unfair comparisons aside: Charlie Weis, this profile in courage is for you. You earned it every word of it, big fella. (Unlike the dollars of your salary. Whether you deserve those is up for debate.) ↵

↵

This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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