In an interview yesterday with Tim Prister of IRISH ILLUSTRATED, Charlie Weis made the following statement:
Let me ask you this question: You guys know about things that go on in different places. Was I living with a grad student in Malibu, or was I living with my wife in my house? You could bet that if I were living with a grad student here in South Bend, it would be national news. He’s doing it in Malibu and it’s not national news. What’s the difference? I don’t understand. Why is it okay for one guy to do things like that, but for me, I’m scrutinized when I swear. I’m sorry for swearing; absolve my sins.
Carroll has responded, on the record.
From the LOS ANGELES TIMES this morning, via USC beat reporter Gary Klein:
Carroll said in a telephone interview that he was apprised of the report by Tim Tessalone, USC’s sports information director.
“It’s untrue, it’s irresponsible and it’s incredible he’d be talking about me like that,” Carroll said of Weis.
On Monday, after Weis was fired by Notre Dame, Carroll said he empathized with Weis’ situation.
“I know how hard it is, I’ve been there before,” said Carroll, who was fired after stints coaching the New York Jets and New England Patriots.
Interesting that Carroll would say he “empathized” with Weis after slamming the former Notre Dame coach for such an “irresponsible” statement.
Don’t be surprised if TMZ or the tabloids start tailing Carroll here in Los Angeles now to check out Weis’ claim. Of course, that doesn’t mean there’s a shred of truth to it.
While some will say that it’s unbelievable that Weis said that, it doesn’t surprise me at all. Weis has been anything but classy to the media, and now his peers, since he was jettisoned from South Bend.
In announcing Weis’ firing last week, Notre Dame Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick said, “there was a huge gulf between the coach’s brash image and personal style.”
Swarbrick meant that in a positive way, but now that statement takes on a whole different meaning.
UPDATE: Charlie Weis claims to the L.A. Times that his comment about Carroll was not meant to be disrespectful to the USC coach.
Early this morning, Weis contacted The Times and said he was having a “totally subjective” conversation with several reporters that was an aside to the formal interview.
“In no way was I trying to take a shot at Pete,” Weis said in a phone message. “What we were talking about was how the rumor mill can affect people’s lives. When I was asked a specific question like that, I responded like, ‘This is the same crap that I’m talking about.’ You start saying things like this and one thing, this guy does this and I do that and all of a sudden the Internet takes it all over the place.
“So, in no way was I trying to take a shot at Pete. I feel if I offended Pete, I will run Pete down and apologize. … In no way do I have any idea what’s going on in anyone’s life other than the fact that rumors on the Internet can affect coaches’ lives in a very, very negative fashion.”
Later, in a telephone interview, Weis said, “In no way would I be disrespectful to that guy,” and “All I know is that he kicked the crap out of me five times.”
Carroll also told the Times he talked to Weis and, “He apologized profusely for being represented wrongly. I’m not commenting anymore.”
Weis apologized with, “In no way do I have any idea what’s going on in anyone’s life other than the fact that rumors on the Internet can affect coaches’ lives in a very, very negative fashion“.
As part of his initial statement that the married Carroll was living with a grad student Weis said, “He’s doing it in Malibu.”
Does that sounds like he’s backing off what he specifically stated about Carroll’s lifestyle?