Irish Players Excited About Weis

With Charlie Weis being named the next head football coach at Notre Dame, a few Irish players were made available after the Weis press conference to give their reactions of their new coach. The players had a hard time holding back their excitement.

Tight end Anthony Fasano is a player who could definitely benefit from playing in the Weis offense. The junior tight end was thrilled to hear that Weis was named head coach.

"He's a mastermind on offense," Fasano said of Weis. "He's going to form this offense to what this team can do. He's going to use our offensive talent to the best of our abilities."

"I think we're all pretty excited," said Fasano of his team's reaction to the news Weis was the new coach. "We've just got to go out and win the bowl game, and then get started with the new era with coach Weis."

Fasano says Weis' pedigree and success in the NFL is something for all Irish players to get excited about.

"It's so impressive," Fasano said of Weis' resume'. "And just through the pro ranks, it just gets us all excited. We definitely want to play here on Saturdays and do the best we can, but our ultimate goal is to get to the NFL and I think that he really helps that out."

So what did Weis say to the Irish players when he addressed the team yesterday?

"He's just going to give everyone a fair shot and he's going to change the attitude around this place and really get things going," said Fasano when asked the question.

So the team attitude needs to change?

"I think so," said Fasano. "Going 6-5, you have to change something."

Senior defensive end Justin Tuck still has a year of eligibility at Notre Dame, but many wonder if he might opt for an early entry into the NFL. Tuck has mentioned that he hasn't made that decision yet, but will after the season.

"That's going through my head right now," said Tuck when asked if Weis seemed like a coach he wanted to play for. "From the little bit I've heard about him and listened to him in the press conference, he seems like a real player's coach and someone you can really like."

Tuck also agreed with Fasano that the attitude of the program needed to change to turn this team around.

"We haven't had the seasons that we wanted and expected," said Tuck "Whenever that's the case, attitude, that's the first thing. The physical part is going to be there."

Tuck said he liked what he heard from Weis in his first meeting with the new Irish head coach. Weis addressed the team after a team practice in the off-season last spring, and Tuck remembers his first impression from that meeting.

"He seemed a little arrogant, but in a good way," said Tuck about his first impression of Weis. "He's real confident. It was surprising. He was the first person to come in as a guest speaker that kind of ripped us. That didn't sit well at first, but once you think about it, the things he was saying, he was absolutely right about. It really set well with me."

Quarterback Brady Quinn couldn't stop smiling on Monday when he spoke with the media. The sophomore quarterback says he's ready to get started now on the Weis offense.

"Hopefully I'll be able to talk to coach here sometime and see if we can get the playbook," said Quinn while laughing.

"I'm pumped up. Obviously just going to the press conference and hearing him talk and watching the game yesterday. It only brings excitement to me. I'm just ready to get my head in the playbook."

Quinn has noticed the development of Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and says he's excited about working with Weis.

"I looked to have a lot of contact with him, obviously him coaching me up so I'm excited about it," Quinn said while still smiling.

The Dublin, Ohio native also said he liked what he heard in the Weis press conference.

"I think just him talking about the overall attitude of our team," said Quinn when asked what he liked hearing the most. "When you hear the word nasty, tough, I think he's really going to bring an edge to this team."

Was that edge missing from the 2004 Irish?

"I wouldn't say it was missing because I feel like our team had an edge off on throughout the season, but it wasn't consistent, and I think that's something that he will bring," said Quinn.

Knowing Weis knows the path to the NFL motivates Quinn even more.

"It gives me a sense of confidence in him because he knows what it takes to get there," said Quinn. "He's coaching guys. He's had success. He's winning Super Bowls. It's only going to help us buy into his program and his system."


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