Posted by BrianBoru at 8/7/2009 4:18 PM EDT
Before a crowd of curious reporters, Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis appeared both confident and anxious as he answered questions for nearly 45 minutes.
The occasion was media day 2009, the official beginning to what ought to be a memorable season.
Weis, seated with his hands folded the entire time, spoke about everything from quarterback Jimmy Clausen to the 2010 recruiting class.
But the recurring mantra was unquestionably: "show me".
Those two words signify that Charlie Weis is sick and tired of the talk. The promises.
The last two seasons have obviously humbled Charlie Weis. No longer do you see the Jersey bravado permeating every syllable of his quotes.
But don't mistake his newfound humility for throwing in the towel. Weis is a sharp guy.
He understands that there is nothing to gain by making promises — it's time to show me.
Sifting through the unavoidable coach speak that these press conferences typically offer, there were a few interesting tidbits of news:
During summer break, quarterback Jimmy Clausen invited wide receivers Michael Floyd and Golden Tate, along with tight end Kyle Rudolph, to his California home. Once there, the four teammates worked on their routes, timing and chemistry to prepare for the 2009 season.
Freshman linebacker Manti Te'o appears like he will have a solid opportunity to start for the Irish. He's 245 pounds. And, listening to the kid during interviews, he sounds like a leader.
Another linebacker to keep your eyes on would be David Posluszny. With four years of eligibility remaining, the Pennsylvania product has been climbing the depth charts. Look for him to log a bunch of minutes at inside linebacker, splitting time with senior Toryan Smith.
You might remember David Posluszny's older brother, Paul, played for Penn State, later getting drafted by the Buffalo Bills in the first round.
As for the running game, the millstone around the Notre Dame football program during recent seasons, Charlie Weis said, "we've been working the whole offseason to make sure we're not pigeonholed into what we're doing".
Weis acknowledged that in order for Notre Dame to once again become a BCS program, the running game will have to ramp up production this season.
Equally assuring, Weis spoke highly of his young defensive line. Nose tackle Ian Williams will be counted on to lead the troops. Williams, according to Weis, has seen marked improvements in the weight room.
Sophomore defensive end Ethan Johnson will be a star this year. Book it.
Defensive end Kapron Lewis-Moore, a last-minute 2008 signing day coup, is perhaps the most intriguing defensive prospect. From the moment he switched his committment from Texas A&M to Notre Dame last February, the rangy Moore has been touted has a player on the rise. One month from tomorrow, he will get his opportunity to start for the Irish.
Now, if only the offensive line...
No Irish Need Apply? Not anymore