Charlie Weis has made it clear that he’s in charge as Kansas’ new football coach.
If Weis’ ego or self-confidence suffered a blow during his four seasons as coach at Notre Dame, or his one season coordinating a futile offense at Florida in 2011, it’s not showing.
The latest: Weis went public Friday with the reasons for Brock Berglund’s dismissal from the Kansas football team. There was really no need to go public; it had been announced earlier that Berglund, a prep star in Colorado who was charged with third-degree assault in Lawrence and missed the 2011 season, would not be member of KU’s football team in 2012.
But Berglund was not immediately granted a release from his scholarship so he could pursue other opportunities. Finally, on Friday, Weis and KU announced that Berglund had been released. But Weis went farther.
“Today, Brock Berglund is released from his scholarship at KU to pursue other opportunities,” Weis said in a statement released by the KU media relations department. “Brock and his representatives have publicly stated their case without any public response from me to this point. Brock spent the majority of the past calendar year in Colorado taking online courses at KU’s expense, which was nearly $40,000. At no time was Brock an active participant of the football team. Once competition was recruited at the quarterback position, Brock decided he no longer wanted to be a part of the team. He was expected to show up for a mandatory team meeting on Sunday, Jan. 15, but he sent an e-mail less than two hours before the meeting to inform us that he had decided to transfer and would not be attending the meeting. He was dismissed after following through on that promise.
“Although Brock has been granted his release, I only wish that he had showed the same courtesy that other players showed and came to talk to me. He decided that he did not have to follow the same protocol as the other department members of the football team. I believe no individual should be more important than the team. Brock did not see it that way.”
My reaction to Weis’ statement is simple: Was that really necessary?
Don’t construe what I’m writing here as standing up for Berglund. Nobody condones what he’s done since becoming a part of the Kansas football program. And it’s best for everyone that he moves on and tries to find his right fit.
But he is only 19 and while that’s old enough to know better, it’s difficult for me to buy that Weis needed to be as aggressive as he was.
What is the purpose of the statement? Is it simply to show he is in charge? Was there so much public reaction to the Berglund situation (I doubt that, seriously) that Weis felt the need to explain not only his stance, but the stance of the athletic department and the university?
I just don’t understand why this had to become an issue whatsoever. It’s not like anyone expected Berglund to find his way back to the Jayhawks and become KU’s quarterback, especially not after Weis brought in two heralded transfers to supposedly hold down that position for the next several years.
Berglund wasn’t even an afterthought. He was a never-thought, if you’ll allow me to make up a word. He never played one snap of football for KU.
That Weis chose to pile on doesn’t show well for the coach. It was an unnecessary show of strength. Charlie, we know you’re in charge. Shoving Berglund around publicly wasn’t necessary.