That was the best decision that Brian Kelly has made in his coaching career. He would have been a fool to go to the NFL now. There is too much success ahead for this Notre Dame program for him to jump to the pro level.
The University of Notre Dame released a statement from Kelly saying the following:
This week, I had an incredible opportunity to speak with one of the premier organizations in sports about becoming their head coach. Like every kid who has ever put on a pair of football cleats, I have had thoughts about being part of the NFL. However, after much reflection and conversation with those closest to me, I have decided to remain at Notre Dame.
Kelly put the Fighting Irish back on top of the college football world in 2012 with an undefeated season and national championship run. He has a load of talent on the roster, and his staff has compiled the No. 5 recruiting class for 2013, according to the 247Sports.com composite poll.
The future in South Bend is bright, and Kelly has the chance to become a legendary man for the Golden Domers.
The jump to the NFL for college coaches has been a shaky past for a number of big names. Nick Saban comes to mind for his struggles in Miami, and Bobby Petrino is known for his infamous departure from Atlanta.
Was it the right move to stay in South Bend?
Guys like Pete Carroll have shown that the move can be made successfully, but Carroll had prior NFL coaching experience before making the leap. It is a tough transition to move from the head-coaching position in college to the professional ranks.
Kelly made the smart move by staying in college. This is the biggest win of the 2012 season for the Irish, and it will be one that pays major dividends in the future.
There is unfinished business that remains in South Bend, and Kelly knows it. In his statement through the university he said, “This decision was motivated purely by my love for Notre Dame and the entire Fighting Irish community, the young men I have the great fortune to coach, and my desire to continue to build the best football program in the country.”
Hold on tight, Irish fans, because the future is bound to bring a wild ride of football. Expect Notre Dame to stay on top with Kelly on the sideline.