Emphasis on scoring
Weis has 26 years of coaching experience, 15 of which have been in the NFL.
In the pros his prized pupils have included running back Curtis Martin, quarterback Tom Brady, and wide receivers Keyshawn Johnson, David Givens, Terry Glenn and Wayne Chrebet.
Weis has a long track record of producing very good high powered and high scoring offenses.
With the tough schedule that Notre Dame plays, the Irish are going to have to be more dynamic on offense.
Their defense has been their strong suit for the past three years, but there haven't been any big doings from the offense and that has hurt the Irish cause.
The heat is on for the Notre Dame offense to make a quick turnaround, especially since Weis will have 10 offensive starters plus standout freshman running back Darius Walker returning.
Walker has a huge upside, and could be in line for an incredible season as a sophomore.
Tight end Anthony Fasano could have a big year in Weis' offense as could wide receiver Rhema McKnight.
The other returning wide receiver, Maurice Stovall, is kind of the big question mark as he has started for three years, but has been inconsistent in his play.
And there's no question the outlook in South Bend will quickly brighten if Weis can work his offensive magic and manufacture some more wins with a team that's won a combined 11 games the last two years.
Playing to strengths
At his Notre Dame press conference, Weis addressed a question about the offense he planned to run with the Irish by saying, "First of all you find out what your players can do, and that's what you have them do."
He stressed being able to have game plans that best utilize the personnel he has available, and that is the smartest thing he can do.
Perhaps Weis recalls when former Irish coach Tyrone Willingham first came to Notre Dame wanting to throw the football.
Weis said he has a very broad and expansive offensive package, but I'm figuring that given restrictions on practice time at the collegiate level, he will be able to use only 50 or 60 percent of the offensive plays he would be able to run in the NFL.
And you just can't design plays if you don't have the right players to run them.
I think Weis will have to recruit some gamebreaking players to really play the kind of football that Notre Dame wants to play.
Balance not always desired
Every coach since Knute Rockne has talked about balance on offense, but I think in the modern era of football there are times when a team wants to purposely be unbalanced.
Weis indirectly brought out that point when he said that what the Irish do on offense will in large measure be dictated by what are the perceived weaknesses of a given opponent.
So in some games, we may see Notre Dame run a lot, and in other games the Irish could pass a lot.
I do, however, think that for Notre Dame to be the kind of team it wants to be going forward, it will have to be able to run the ball with some success.
A goal for Weis will be to field an offensive unit that has some consistency in the running game.
With the caliber of schedule Notre Dame plays, there will be times in games when the Irish will have to run the ball effectively.
A recruiting chip
A big challenge for Weis, who graduated from Notre Dame in 1978 but did not play football for the Irish, will be recruiting.
I agree with Weis when he says that one selling point he'll have in attracting players to Notre Dame is the fact that he has coached NFL stars.
I think the premiere high school players of today all think they are going to be playing in the NFL.
In fact, very few of them will make the pros, but all of them think they will.
They want to be able to go to a college that will feature their skill set, and it may very well matter to them that their college coach has an impressive NFL background.
Weis can certainly hold up to recruits, particularly receivers and quarterbacks, his impressive body of work, and he can point to examples of that work like how good Patriots' quarterback Tom Brady has become under his tutelage.
Even with this in his favor, Weis and his staff have their work cut out for them if the Irish are to turn the corner in recruiting.
Notre Dame's last recruiting class wasn't rated among the top 30 in the nation, and Weis will need to fare significantly better than that if he is to guide the Irish back to elite status in college football.
Junior QB Everett Golson didn't put up any staggering numbers in Notre Dame's 84th annual Blue-Gold game, but Keith Arnold writes in the spring edition of Five Things that numbers can't show how much he's improved in the offseason as a leader.
Dec. 14: Charlie Weis states his plans for Notre Dame as the new head football coach.
Notre Dame's 2012 season
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