Did Marvin Kloss keep USF's Weist from getting UConn job?
Had fate taken a slightly different trajectory, first-year USF co-offensive coordinator T.J. Weist might be coaching against the Bulls this weekend.
Unfortunately for Weist, Marvin Kloss' trajectory never wavered during his magical 2013 season.
Weist made his debut as Connecticut's interim coach Oct. 12 of that season, when the Huskies fell 13-10 to the Bulls on Kloss' 43-yard field goal -- into a brisk New England wind -- with 4:03 remaining.
Less than two weeks before, Weist had been elevated when UConn fired Paul Pasqualoni following an 0-4 start. Had the Huskies prevailed that day, he still might be coaching them. Instead, they dropped their first five under Weist before ending the season on a three-game win streak.
"Our team back then needed to just win, they needed to turn the corner," said Weist, preparing the Bulls for Saturday's home game against the Huskies.
"And our staff really believed that if that team just started winning, they were gonna keep winning. So we knew once we got going, once we beat Temple (on Nov. 23), we knew we were gonna keep winning because we had that character on our team. We wanted it to happen earlier, but that's what happened."
The Temple victory began the season-ending streak that included home victories against Rutgers and Memphis. Some suggested Weist's ability to keep the Huskies motivated following an 0-9 start should've been enough to earn him the job permanently.
"Going in, the (UConn) AD, Warde (Manuel) had told me, 'Just win,'" Weist said. "He didn't say (how many) but I knew that we had to win six, put together a winning streak or whatever it was, and show that program that we could win on a consistent basis.
"If I would've won earlier, if we could've beaten South Florida in that first game and kept winning, then I would've said, 'Hey, you know what, I earned this job.' But I didn't. ... I think our staff and that team takes away a lot of pride in how we finished. But I can't sit and here and say, 'Boy, I earned that job.'"