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December 11, 2004
REPORT: Notre Dame Picks Patriots' Weis
BY: Ian Logue/PatsFans.com

It looks like New England Patriots offensive coordinator Charlie Weis is indeed headed to South Bend after all.

Chris Mortensen of ESPN.com is reporting that Weis has agreed to terms with Notre Dame to become their new head football coach.

According to the report, the Patriots' offensive coordinator will receive a six-year contract that will reportedly pay him approximately $2 million per year and that Weis is expected to fly to South Bend after Sunday's Patriots' home game against the Cincinnati Bengals and meet with the school's football team that night.

A press conference to introduce Weis is reportedly expected to be held on Monday.

Weis had reportedly been in contention with Bills offensive coordinator Tom Clements who the school had interviewed on Thursday night, but apparently after meeting with Weis on Friday the Fighting Irish reportedly told Clements on Saturday morning that he was no longer in the running for the job.

The team then apparently began negotiations with Weis, with the agreement coming Saturday evening.

Now it will be interesting to see what happens with Weis with four regular season games remaining for the Patriots. The team, who is currently sitting at 11-1 on the season, will face the Bengals in Foxboro on Sunday and at some point will likely also earn a postseason berth. Weis is currently under contract with the Patriots for the remainder of the season, but with recruiting being such a big part of college football, it would be tough for Weis to wait until January or February to get started.

Head coach Bill Belichick had told the media on Friday that he expected Weis to be here for the rest of the year.

"Charlie is here," said Belichick on Friday. "Charlie, I expect, will continue to be here and carry out his responsibilities through the season."

After winning two championships in three years, the Patriots are poised to contend for another. Should they get back to the Super Bowl, Belichick said he expects Weis to be calling the plays.

"Right," Belichick said on Friday when asked should the Patriots end up in the Super Bowl this year if he expected Weis to be his offensive coordinator in that game. "Long term for me is Sunday against Cincinnati, okay?"

"That's where my focus is. That's where Charlie's focus is. That's where the team's focus is. And that's as far as I'm going. Sunday. Cincinnati."

Weis would replace Tyrone Willingham who was fired by Notre Dame after just three seasons.

The Patriots offensive coordinator is in his 15th season as an NFL coach and is also a Notre Dame alumnus.


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