There will be no public apology from Brian Kelly to David Grimes.
However, Notre Dame’s head coach did soften his stance on Saturday night’s sideline altercation during his Tuesday press conference, expressing regret for the nationally televised blowup.
During the third quarter Kelly grabbed hold of the assistant strength coach’s shirt and pushed him backward after Grimes had been jawing at an official. Sheldon Day grabbed Grimes to remove him from the situation while strength and conditioning coordinator Paul Longo tried to talk down Kelly.
“I wish the situation never occurred,” Kelly said. “I regret that it happened. David and I have met. We have met about the situation. We've moved past it.
“David is a valuable employee. He is a guy that does a great job here. He'll be with us a long time.”
Kelly was defiant about any potential apology the day after the incident when asked about reconciling with Grimes. Kelly intimated that critics didn’t understand the full sideline situation, although the head coach declined to reveal what led to the incident during the third quarter.
On Tuesday, Kelly said Notre Dame would rework its sideline set up moving forward. It’s not clear if Grimes will remain on the field during games.
“We've made some changes to how we're going to do things on the sideline and how we'll have a better sideline situation,” Kelly said.
Even through Kelly said he regretted the incident, he defended the reaction in some ways because it could have stopped Notre Dame from being flagged for a 15-yard penalty. At the time of the incident Notre Dame led 17-10 just past the midway point of the third quarter.
“First of all, I'm responsible for the sideline,” Kelly said. “Our sideline was not where it needed to be. There were some things going on on the sideline that were unacceptable. It falls on my shoulders.
“If we were to get a penalty in that time of the game, it would have fell on me as being somebody that can't control the sideline.”