Kelly: Golson know some want to see him fail
Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly says quarterback Everett Golson
will return to school after serving a semester-long suspension for
”There’s going to be a lot of noise surrounding Everett Golson.
I think there’s going to be as many people looking for him to not
succeed as there will be to succeed. Unfortunately, not everybody
likes a good story. So there will be some cynics out there,” Kelly
said. ”I think we’re going to have to support him. But he’s
prepared to handle all those things.”
Golson was suspended from the university in May for the fall
semester and readmitted to school on Friday. He will not begin
working out with the team until after the 25th-ranked Irish (8-4)
play Rutgers (6-6) in the Pinstripe Bowl in New York City on Dec.
Golson plans to travel to New York on his own and will visit
with the team, Kelly said. He has not talked to Golson since he had
been readmitted, saying they had missed each other’s telephone
calls. But Kelly traveled to Golson’s hometown of Myrtle Beach,
S.C., on Tuesday to meet with him.
Golson, who was listed at 185 pounds when Notre Dame faced
Alabama in the national championship game last year, looked
”physically more mature, probably over 200 pounds,” Kelly said.
”He looked great, quite frankly. Great physical condition and I
think mentally is really where I saw a young man that understands
what he’s coming back to.”
The Irish will be looking for more from Golson, whom Kelly said
still needs to beat out freshman Malik Zaire, who didn’t play this
season. Golson put up decent numbers last season, but needed to be
rescued several times by Tommy Rees, who started for the Irish this
Kelly said he believes Golson is set up to be a leader on the
team by the way he handled being suspended.
”I think he’s gotten a lot of respect from his teammates for
the manner that he handled himself. He took full accountability and
responsibility for his actions,” he said.
Kelly believes Golson will now be judged by how he acts moving
forward. Kelly said he has more trust in Golson of he responded to
”He’s done everything that we’ve asked him. I think he’s added
a little bit to that bank of trust over this period of time. I
think we’ll go into this offseason expecting him to continue to
build on that,” he said.
While Golson returns, Kelly also has been dealing with the
departures of defensive coordinator Bob Diaco, who was introduced
as head coach at UConn on Thursday, and offensive coordinator Chuck
Martin, who was hired as head coach at Miami of Ohio on Dec. 3.
That means the Irish will be without both of its coordinators
for the bowl game. Rutgers also will be without several coaches
after firing its defensive coordinator, quarterbacks coach and
offensive line coach. Kelly said he doesn’t expect the moves to
have much impact on the game.
”It’s hard to put in new schemes at this time because they’re
in exams, like we are. You’re not putting in a ton of new schemes.
You may accentuate one thing or another. But you’re going to look
very similar to what you are during the season,” he said.
Kelly also said he doesn’t expect to lose any other assistant
coaches despite speculation in the media that Diaco might bring a
Notre Dame assistant with him.
”I expect all my staff to stay in place,” he said.