Brian Kelly Agrees to Contract Extension With Notre Dame Just Ahead of National Signing DayBy Russell Westerholm
The University of Notre Dame announced an extension for its head football coach, Brian Kelly, and probably timed its decision to help him secure a few final recruits.
Kelly's contract now extends through the 2021 season, though the school did not release the financial details. The news comes five days before National Signing Day, signaling to still undecided recruits weighing Notre Dame that they are committed to keep the coach that recruited them.
"I want to thank Father Jenkins (University president Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C.) and the leadership of Notre Dame for their confidence in me," Kelly said in a statement. "I coach football because I believe there are few better avenues for impacting the lives of young men, and I am certain that there is no better place to do that than the University of Notre Dame. During the next six years I look forward to continuing to lead a championship caliber program, but more importantly I look forward to continuing to help the student-athletes I coach to achieve greatness as football players, as students and as men who will make a difference in families, communities and organizations they will someday lead."
The news comes shortly after Kelly's coaching staff brought the team's 18-wheel equipment truck to a highly touted wide receiver recruit's home in Savannah, Ga. ESPN reported the coaches promoting their gesture online may have been an NCAA bylaw violation. If it is, the recruit would be blocked from signing with Notre Dame, though the school was confident they broke no rule.
Kelly is 55-23 in six seasons at Notre Dame and has the third most wins in the nation since the start of the 2001 season with 149. He has also brought his team to a bowl game in each of his first six seasons, something a Notre Dame football coach had never done.