Notre Dame fans have long moved on from the Charlie Weis era. Weis was hired to coach the Fighting Irish in 2005, and he was unsuccessful in restoring a tradition of winning in South Bend. His successor, Brian Kelly, led Notre Dame to the BCS National Championship game last season. A glance at the school’s payroll might lead you to believe Weis had something to do with it.
As Brian Hamilton of the Chicago Tribune pointed out, Notre Dame could end up paying Weis nearly $19 million to do absolutely nothing for the team when all is said and done. According to federal tax documents obtained by the Tribune on Thursday, Weis received a buyout payment of $6,638,403 when he was fired in 2009. He has since received two more payments of $2,054,744 and is scheduled to receive similar payments through 2015, which would bring his total compensation after dismissal to just south of $19 million.
Good lord. As far as the “books” are concerned, Kelly earned only $1,088,179 at Notre Dame from July 2011 to July 2012. However, the school noted that its head football coach is authorized to receive compensation from “external sources” such as apparel companies that would not have to be reported on tax forms.
Weis, who is currently the head coach at Kansas, may have his hands full with student reporters like this, but there is no need to feel sorry for him. In addition to earning a nice paycheck from the Jayhawks, Weis is scheduled to receive more than $2 million per year from Notre Dame for the next four years. Coaches may need to win to keep their jobs, but they certainly don’t have to collect hardware to keep the paychecks coming.