The retention of Charlie Weis as Notre Dame's football coach is causing upheaval among fans and writers, as much for Weis' supposedly aloof personality as for his dismal recent record.

In the last two seasons, the Irish have gone 9-15. The fabled school in South Bend, Ind., never before had lost that many games over a two-year period.

More telling perhaps is this: In their last 17 games against teams that finished with winning records, the Irish are 1-16.

As Rick Morrissey of the Chicago Tribune wrote: "That's not University of Notre Dame football. That's Indiana University football.

"If anyone out there can figure out what Notre Dame has been doing the last 10 years, let us know. Sources say God, who is an Irish fan, would like an answer too."

The Tribune's Teddy Greenstein said Weis has alienated one of Notre Dame's most vital constituencies, former players.

Even worse, apparently, are his relations with alumni.

"The antipathy toward Weis goes far deeper for many alums," Greenstein said. "He has insulted some with foul language, failed to show respect for their family members and operated with a distasteful air of superiority."

One former Notre Dame employee told Greenstein that Weis has "upset everyone in the Notre Dame administration at one time or another."

So the administration handed him another season.

Athletic director Jack Swarbrick said there was no specific number of victories Weis needed in 2009 to get another stay of execution.

But he also made it clear another 6-6 finish would not be good enough.

"From none of our perspectives would a repeat of 2008 be acceptable," Swarbrick told reporters.

Charlie, you've been warned.

Tuberville out. Meanwhile, coach Tommy Tuberville stepped down after 10 years as head man at Auburn, where he had numbers Weis can only dream about.

Tuberville was 85-40 at Auburn, including a 13-0 season in 2004 when the Tigers finished No. 2 in the nation. He led the Tigers to 42 wins over the previous four seasons, the fifth-most in the country, and to six straight wins over hated rival Alabama.

But Auburn finished 5-7 this year, and the Tigers' worst season in 10 years ended with a 36-0 loss to the top-ranked Crimson Tide.

At least at Auburn, the coach knows what he's up against - he has to win the instate war with Alabama.

The Crimson Tide went through about half a dozen coaches who couldn't beat Auburn before latching onto Nick Saban.

Now Saban owns the state, and at 12-0, Alabama is No. 1 in the nation.

Tuberville knew it was time to go.

This article contains information from the Associated Press.
Post a question or comment for staff writer Don McKee at http://go.philly.com/askmckee or by e-mail at dmckee@phillynews.com.