Dear Mr. Kelly,
First and foremost thank you. Thank you for agreeing to come to South Bend, In., and coach a once proud football program. The weather here isn’t that great as the seasons approach winter, though I will promise you that at 3:30 tomorrow you will walk into Notre Dame stadium, see Touchdown Jesus and think you must have died and gone to heaven.
Thank you for infusing hope into a program with your vision of a spread offense utilizing our many talented receivers many brought in by Jabba the Hut, aka he who shall not be named.
It’s not only hope that I, the football team and the community feel because of you it’s also confidence. Confidence that a product will be taking the field Saturday, Sept. 4 who will make us remember the meaning of the name Fighting Irish. For all you have done, I thank you.
Now, realistically this comes with a warning.
If you are just the next in a long line of coaches to fail at this once proud institution, you will be met with scorn. If, after infusing faith, hope and confidence into my football program you turn out to be all talk and no game, I and the rest of the Irish faithful will rue the day you shook Jack Swarbricks’ hand on that podium.
If in reality all you offer are empty promises and you leave this place without a care in several years as you have done at other programs know one thing. There are those of us who still believe that this is hallowed ground.
However the alternative is unimaginable Mr. Kelly.
If you do make good on your optimism. If you do take the Irish back to where they belong and make them a prominent figure in the BCS, you will be worshiped. We will call your name in the streets and you will not be able to take your family out to dinner because many of the best restaurants in this area will not charge you for their services, and it will be done because of the services you have offered and made good on.
If you do wake up the echoes in South Bend, they will throw you parades and maybe, just maybe you will join other legends who have their own statue outside of the House that Rockne built.
All I can say now, Mr. Kelly, is good luck.
I hope your talk wasn't all just talk, because everyone will get a first glimpse of the hand we have been dealt tomorrow, kickoff at 3:30 against rival Purdue. I’ll be there, in the stands cheering on my football team and hopefully watching a new era in Fighting Irish football.
Best of wishes from the Notre Dame community, we want to believe in you, our football team and the return to glory. Go Irish.