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Football: Yeatman will not suit up

Bill Brink | Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Junior tight end Will Yeatman will not play this weekend against Purdue and will not suit up until his “matter is resolved,” Irish coach Charlie Weis said in his weekly press conference.

Yeatman and freshman center Mike Golic Jr. were arrested this weekend at an off-campus party on Colfax Ave. Police charged Yeatman with minor consumption of alcohol, false informing and resisting arrest, and charged Golic with minor consumption of alcohol.

“Any other action as it relates to team rules, including the situation with Mike Golic, will be handled by me,” Weis said.

Weis said both players will participate in practice.

The situation’s delicacy, Weis said, requires him to act with some degree of compassion.

“I think I try to treat these kids similar to if I were talking to Charlie [Weis, Jr.],” Weis said. “As you go through growing pains, you know, you just try to educate and teach and let them know that you weren’t perfect when you were going through the growing experience yourself.”

Weis said it is not his role to judge the players’ actions but rather to provide support.

“I think the most important thing is to just look out for the interest of the kids and the team and the University,” Weis said.

At the tight end position, Weis said Joseph Fauria’s playing time will increase due to the loss of Yeatman.

“As a matter of fact, today, instead of practicing on the scout team he’ll be practicing up with the big boys,” Weis said.

Freshman Kyle Rudolph currently tops the depth chart at tight end.

The loss of Yeatman, who caught six passes for two yards and played primarily as a run-blocker, won’t hamper the team’s blocking schemes.

“We’re ready to go with him or without him. So you have to have that covered on both ends,” Weis said.

Weis also said the passing game, while effective in the first three games, cannot carry the offense. He would much rather have a balanced offense instead, he said.

“You look at the tape at the first three games [and] we’ve had more success throwing the ball than running the ball,” he said. “But you can’t make a living – you can’t make a living just being one-dimensional in football.”

Given the option of continuing with that balance despite recent struggles of the running game or converting to a more pass-heavy offense, Weis said the rushing offense takes pressure off the quarterback and prevents defenses from keying on the passing game.

“I always believe that it makes things a heck of a lot easier on the quarterback if you can run the ball. It makes it a lot easier,” the coach said. “When defensive linemen can just pin their ears back and know you were throwing on every down, you’re usually putting yourself at risk.”

When asked whether it would be easier to run the ball with one solid back rather than three, Weis drew his answer from the Monday Night Football game between the Jets and the Chargers. Chargers running back LaDanian Tomlinson, he said, was the best, but their change-of-pace back, Darren Sproles, posed a threat every time he got in the game.

“When they give him the ball, it’s not like giving it to LaDainian,” he said. “LaDainian is one of the best but when that little guy gets in there you better look out because every time he touches it, he may be taking it to the house.”


uWeis said wide receiver David Grimes will play this weekend. Grimes has missed time because of a sore back.