Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Notre Dame's Brian Kelly: 'I've got the best job in the country'

Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly said he hasn’t thought about leaving South Bend.

Getty Images

Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly said he hasn’t thought about leaving South Bend.

MIAMI — With his Notre Dame team preparing to play Alabama in the BCS national title game on Monday night, and several NFL head coaching positions open, it was inevitable that Brian Kelly's name would surface as a potential candidate for NFL jobs.

But the Fighting Irish coach said he hasn't given any thought to leaving.

"I think when I took the job at Notre Dame, I think I said it was a dream job," Kelly said Saturday. "But I never went around day to day saying anything about being the Notre Dame head coach, because the job that I had in hand was what I was thinking about. And I think that's the same thing with the NFL. I think from my perspective I've got the best job in the country — NFL, college, high school, whatever. I just look at the place that I'm at and thankful for the opportunity that I have."

Kelly, 51, did not directly confirm or deny whether he has been contacted by any NFL teams.

"They have to contact my representation and then they've got to follow through that," he said. "If that did occur, then all that stuff is secondary to this football game. This is the biggest game that I've ever been involved in, so my focus is 100 percent on this … game."

A WORTHWHILE LOSS: It didn't feel like it at the time, but Alabama's loss to Texas A&M on Nov. 10 turned out to be a blessing in disguise, the Crimson Tide players said. "From Day 1 our goal was to come to the national championship," Alabama RB Eddie Lacy said. "We would like to not have lost any games, but sometimes losing brings back what you set in Day 1 and it resets your mind frame. Unfortunately we had to go through that, but it made us lock on what we actually wanted."

SABAN'S RETURN: Alabama's Nick Saban returned to Sun Life Stadium on Saturday, where he spent 2005-06 as coach of the NFL's Dolphins.

He didn't leave Miami on the best of terms but said it was special to return — but not because of his previous stint.

"I'm kind of excited about the opportunity that our team has," he said. "It's really about our team and this game. We're always happy to come back to South Florida. We have some great relationships here and some very fond memories of being here. But you know we recruited and worked to develop this team for a long, long time, and it's really a lot more about them being here and having the opportunity and trying to get them prepared to take advantage of that opportunity than it is anything that's happened in my past."

Saban insisted for weeks late in 2006 that he would not leave the Dolphins for the Crimson Tide, famously saying at one point: "I guess I have to say it. I'm not going to be the Alabama coach."

Less than two weeks after uttering that phrase, he was the Alabama coach. "I don't have any unfinished business in the NFL," Saban, 61, said Saturday. "It's not something I'm thinking about; it's not even something that I want to do. I want to be a college coach."

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

Notre Dame's Brian Kelly: 'I've got the best job in the country' 01/05/13 [Last modified: Saturday, January 5, 2013 10:33pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. College World Series: Gators, LSU face off in all-SEC finals

    College

    OMAHA, Neb. — The matchup for the College World Series finals bolsters the case for those who say the best baseball in the land is played in the SEC.

    Florida’s Brady Singer, delivering during a CWS win over Louisville last week, is scheduled to start tonight against LSU.
  2. Jones: Fox Sports Sun shows depth in Rays coverage

    TV and Radio

    tom jones' two cents

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst from a weekend of televised sports.

    Best coverage

    Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) makes a run home for a score in the in the final game of a three-game series between the Tampa Bay Rays and AL East rival the Baltimore Orioles at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, June 25, 2017.
  3. Brian Boyle says returning to Lightning a 'huge option'

    Blogs

    As former Lightning forward Brian Boyle approaches free agency this week, he said he's trying to stay busy.

  4. Rays journal: Blake Snell to rejoin rotation, Erasmo Ramirez heads to bullpen

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — LHP Blake Snell is rejoining the Rays' rotation, but the move has as much to do with helping the bullpen as it does with Snell's improvement during his time at Triple-A Durham.

    Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Erasmo Ramirez (30) delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Cincinnati Reds Wednesday, June 21, 2017 in St. Petersburg.
  5. Rays' bullpen stars lit up in loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Saturday it was the soft underbelly of the bullpen that let one get away from the Rays, incurring the wrath of the team's faithful followers, who wondered why the high-leverage guys weren't pitching.

    Rays closer Alex Colome, coming in with the score tied in the ninth, allows three runs in his second straight poor outing.