3 Years Ago Today: Kelly introduced as Irish football coach

Brian Kelly stepped out of an SUV and onto the Notre Dame campus as the head coach of the Irish for the first time on a cold and snowy December day.

As he walked towards the football building, he was greeted by a few reporters, photographers and videographers capturing his first moments on campus.

"How we doing guys?" Kelly asked our WNDU videographer, putting on that instant Kelly charm. "Cold?"

"Glad to have you hear baby," yelled a diehard Irish fan, who just happened to be the Notre Dame Leprechaun.

"Glad to be here," Kelly responded.

"Lead us back to glory," the Leprechaun, Dan Collins, said.

Kelly then turned to then associate Athletic Director Bill Scholl and asked, "By return to glory, will they be happy if we just win more games?"

The day was December 11, 2009. Exactly three years ago.

Three years later, Kelly hasn't just won more games---he's won them all. Notre Dame is undefeated and will face Alabama for the national championship in 27 days.

A few hours after his campus arrival, Kelly sported that charm to the entire Notre Dame Nation as he was introduced at a press conference.

"I want to welcome you as the new leader of our football program at the University of Notre Dame," Irish Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick said as Kelly took the podium.

And it didn't take for Brian Kelly to show why he was the right choice.

"There's a football coach and then there's the football coach at Notre Dame," Kelly proclaimed. "Nobody, Nobody does it like Notre Dame."

But when Kelly arrived. It had been a very long time since Notre Dame had done it like Notre Dame.

"you do not come to the University of Notre Dame because you want to be average," Kelly explained. "You want to be the best of the best and that's why I'm here. It inspires me to be around young men like I had around me today."

Among the young men there in the room that day was future Irish captain Kapron Lewis-Moore.

"it was inspiring," the then sophomore Lewis-Moore said. "Getting to know him--seeing the personality. This press conference, got to know him a little better. It's a shot in the arm to the program. I feel like we're headed in the right direction."

"The program and these kids have been through a tough period of time," Swarbrick said after Kelly's press conference. "You want someone who can come in and lift the cloud---just sort of energize them. And he certainly had that."

Boy he did.

"We go to work right away," Kelly declared. "We don't get a 5-year plan. This is a 5-minute plan. We are working on it immediately. We have expectations that Notre Dame plays at the highest level."

He's made that happen in just three years.


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