Brian Kelly made it clear at the first spring practice.
No more Mr. Nice Guy.
The breakneck pace of the first practice was unlike anything seen in the Weis era-- or anyone else for that matter.
“We're 15-21 the last few years," he reminded everyone.
“There's no bruised egos. Everybody knows where this thing is at. Again, we're not coaching to be nice. We're saying, ‘Here is where we are, here is where we have to go.' We're not beating you with a stick. We have a long way to go. and they get that.”
The Kelly staff are no respectful of egos either. Big man on campus, quarter back Dayne Crist, got yelled at the most.
“Let's go Dayne. Today Dayne,” offensive coordinator Charlie Molnar barked.
“It was different from anything I've done before in terms of tempo and practice format,” Crist remarked after practice. “But it's something I'll get used to and continue to build on.
“I wouldn't want myself or the next guy to feel any sense of entitlement. This is Notre Dame.”
This was a new Notre Dame. A caffeinated Notre Dame as one media scribe called it
“It's called ‘dynamic' stretching,” a ND spokesperson said.
“It was overwhelming, well, different,” wide receiver Michael Floyd said of the two-hour, 15-minute practice
“I didn't expect as much,” Floyd said of the practice itself, not the media turnout. “I underestimated it.”
Kelly also warned against fighting at practice.
“We respect our teammates,” he said. “I don't like talk. I'm not a guy that wants to listen to anybody talking BS. I don't like seeing fights in practice.
“If I have to stop the practice because I have two knuckleheads fighting, you're not getting through the book with me.”
And the repercussions for not doing so?
“I think one of the themes we've talked about with our football team is we want to return to our roots,” he said. “Our roots are the Fighting Irish. I think building that model requires some toughness.
“I think it starts at the top and it works its way to the players. They see it. It manifests itself onto the practice field and then into games.”