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White outlines extensive search

Matt Lozar | Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Notre Dame athletic director Kevin White claims he doesn’t know any of the details about the nationwide media speculation surrounding the Irish coaching search.

He didn’t ready any of the articles.

“I’ve had the blinders on. I haven’t read any of your articles. I really haven’t. I’m sure some of them were terrific and some weren’t very good. I can’t speak to that,” White said. “What I can tell you is my focus has been on hiring the next football coach. I worked really hard not to be defocused by everything that’s going on.”

Over the 10-day search, White said Monday there were an unquantifiable number of conversations with potential prospects in the college and NFL worlds. The University utilized one outside search consultant, Gene Corrigan, a former Notre Dame athletic director and former commissioner of the Atlantic Coast Conference.

White said five candidates were interviewed formally for the head coach position left vacant by the Nov. 30 firing of Tyrone Willingham.

Two candidates had conversations with University representatives about specific compensation details.

On Friday, a number of different groups talked by phone with coach Charlie Weis before the offer was made that evening.

The student-athlete transition team of Victor Abiamiri, Anthony Fasano, Brady Quinn, Brandon Hoyte, Justin Tuck and Ryan Harris talked with Weis at 2 p.m. on Friday. Then at 3 p.m., University Provost Nathan Hatch, Executive Vice President John Affleck-Graves and Faculty Board on Athletics chair Fernand Dutile, chair of the faculty board on athletics. A decision was then made and at 6 p.m. Friday evening, White and University President-elect Father John Jenkins offered Weis the position.