Breakups by text message are never ideal, but Brian Kelly had to say something to his Notre Dame team after news broke of his reported hiring as the next LSU football head coach.
The departure of a longtime, major college coach is rarely smooth, and that was the case with his players finding out about the hire by social media, along with the rest of the country. He apologized for not being able to break the news to his team in person, according to a group message shared by Pete Sampson of The Athletic, before going on to explain the circumstances around his departure.
Kelly said he was out of the area when the news broke, but that he'd be returning to South Bend Tuesday morning and would meet with the team in person early in the morning.
"Just know that my love for you is limitless," Kelly wrote, "and I am so proud of all that you have accomplished. Our program is elite because of your hard work and commitment and I know that will continue."
Kelly's reported hire as LSU's head coach comes after more than a decade at Notre Dame, with several trips to either a national championship or College Football Playoff bracket. His Irish squad finished its regular season 11-1, but at No. 6 and on the outside looking in at this year's CFP chase. Many of the top programs will be taking part in conference championship games this week. With Notre Dame not affiliated with a conference, its next game will come in whatever postseason bowl they land in. LSU also became bowl-eligible with a win over Texas A&M in the regular-season finale. Outgoing coach Ed Orgeron will not take part in that game, with OL coach Brad Davis expected to serve as the interim.
As of Monday evening there had been no official announcement from either school, and a timeline of when a coaching handoff might occur was still unknown.