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Monday’s Morning Mashup: Bears OL Kyle Long calls Chicago fans’ booing ‘unacceptable’ 10.20.14 at 7:31 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MONDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NFL: Texans at Steelers, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-AM)
Soccer: Premier League, Manchester United at West Bromwich, 2:55 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: Women’s CONCACAF, United States vs. Haiti, 7:30 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

— The Bears, who travel to Foxboro to play the Patriots next weekend, had some issues in the locker room after Sunday’s 27-14 loss to the visiting Dolphins, with controversial wide receiver Brandon Marshall reportedly in the middle of things. When the players weren’t sniping at each other, there was some criticism of their home fans.

The Soldier Field crowd booed the Bears after they fell behind 14-0 at halftime, a reaction offensive lineman Kyle Long deemed inappropriate.

“I don’t know if ‘upset’ is the word I would use,” Long said. “As somebody that is blood, sweat and tears in this locker room like the other guys, the coaches, the trainers, the staff and the equipment guys, to be getting booed at home when you’re walking off the field down two possessions is unacceptable — especially when there is not a lot of noise being made on third down [when Miami had the ball], period.”

MASHUP POLL: Were Bears fans out of line to boo their team?

  • No, when a team doesn't perform it deserves to hear it from the crowd (77%, 207 Votes)
  • Yes, true fans lift up their team, not tear it down (23%, 63 Votes)

Total Voters: 270

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Tight end Marcellus Bennett was more understanding, especially considering Chicago now is 0-3 at home.

“If I go see a bad movie, I boo,” Bennett said. “It’s an entertainment business. We are all entertainers. If you go to a bad show, most people boo. I think they had the right to do that. If I want to boo at fans, I can boo at fans, or whoever it may be. They pay for their tickets, and the show wasn’t up to their liking.

“If I go to a movie, I walk out if I don’t like the movie. Like ‘Transformers 3′ — it was terrible. I didn’t stay for the whole film and walked out.”

Serena Williams on Sunday voiced support the Women’s Tennis Association’s one-year ban of Russian Tennis Federation chief Shamil Tarpischev for insulting comments about the Williams sisters.

Tarpischev, who also was fined $25,000, had appeared on a Russian television talk show and referred to the Williams sisters as “brothers” and added, “It’s scary when you really look at them.”

He later said that he had no “malicious intent” and that his quotes on the “humorous show” were taken out of context. He said of the suspension: “I can’t comment. I don’t understand it.”

Said Williams on Sunday: “I think the WTA did a great job of taking [the] initiative and taking immediate action to his comments. I thought they were very insensitive and extremely sexist as well as racist at the same time. I thought they were in a way bullying.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Brian Kelly, Kyle Long, notre dame, Serena Williams
USC without QB Matt Barkley against No. 1 Notre Dame 11.19.12 at 2:28 pm ET
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Southern California will be without quarterback Matt Barkley when the Trojans take on No. 1 Notre Dame this Saturday.

Coach Lane Kiffin announced freshman Max Wittek will make his first career start in place of Barkley.

In three appearances this season, Wittek has completed 8-of-9 passes for 95 yards and a touchdown with no interceptions. He has been sacked once. His debut will not be an easy one, as he faces the top-ranked Irish at the Los Angeles Coliseum.

Barkley was injured in the final minutes of the Trojans’ 38-28 loss to UCLA on Saturday when he was sacked by linebacker Anthony Barr. Barkley was down on the field for a few minutes and was replaced by Wittek on USC’s final series.

Following the game, Barkley left the stadium with his right arm covered by a sweater. His shoulder appeared to be supported by a sling, but he would not comment on the injury, citing the program’s policy.

“I feel bad for him and his family,” Kiffin said. “This is obviously not how you want it to be.”

Read More: Matt Barkley, Max Wittek, notre dame, Rumor Mill
Notre Dame paid Charlie Weis millions to leave 05.20.11 at 4:51 pm ET
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Notre Dame was willing to pay former football coach Charlie Weis millions to just go away, according to the Chicago Tribune. The university fired Weis in November 2011, but that was just the beginning. The school made a “termination payment” of over $6.6 million and will be paying Weis in smaller, annual increments until December 2015.

After earning Bowl Championship Series bids in each of his first two seasons, Weis’ team floundered in its last three seasons, recording a mediocre 16-21 record. The former Patriots offensive coordinator spent one year in the same position with the Chiefs and is now the offensive coordinator at the University of Florida.

Read More: Charlie Weis, notre dame,
Notre Dame fined for student videographer’s death 03.15.11 at 12:37 pm ET
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The University of Notre Dame was found to have committed six safety violations in the death of student Declan Sullivan, who fell from a a hydraulic lift while filming football practice on a windy day in October.

Notre Dame will be fined $77,500, according to Lori Torres of the Indiana Department of Labor Commission.

Violations included failure to properly train the student videographer, failure to have the lift properly inspected and failure to post the proper warnings on the lift itself.

Read More: notre dame, Rumor Mill,
Hydraulic lifts banned at Notre Dame after student death 03.08.11 at 10:50 am ET
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The University of Notre Dame has banned the use of hydraulic lifts and will now use remote-controlled cameras to film the football team’s practices.

This change comes about after an accident with the lifts last October that resulted in the death of  Notre Dame student Declan Sullivan.

Sullivan, the team videographer, fell 50 feet from a hydraulic lift tower while filming football practice on a particularly windy day. According to the National Weather Service, winds in the area were gusting at speeds up to 51 mph.

Sullivan’s death  is still under investigation by the Indiana Occupational Health and Safety Administration.

Read More: Declan Sullivan, notre dame, Rumor Mill,
Notre Dame ratings up 77% from last year 09.07.10 at 1:59 pm ET
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Maybe it was the debut of head coach Brian Kelly, maybe it was new color analyst Mike Mayock (a massive upgrade from Pat Haden) maybe it was spotty weather around the country. Whatever it was, it worked for NBC on Saturday.

Notre Dame’s 23-12 win over Purdue was the highest rated home game for the network since 2006 and up 77% from the 2009 season opener vs. Nevada.

NBC reports a 2.3 overnight rating and six share for the game, compared to a 1.3 rating and three share for the 2009 opener.

Read More: Mike Mayock, notre dame, Rumor Mill,
Broken Branches on Belichick Coaching Tree 11.24.09 at 1:32 am ET
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A week ago, Bill Belichick was not in the most cheerful of spirits after his failed decision to go for a fourth-and-2 from his own 28-yard line. Now, seven days later, Belichick can sit back in his office in jollier spirits after the Patriots overpowered Rex Ryan’s Jets, 31-14, in a Sunday afternoon showdown in Foxboro.

Yet, while Belichick may be able to put on a merry Monday morning quarterback face this week, a few of his former coaching pupils find themselves either in the losing column, on the hot seat or just plain out of work.

Since Belichick first became a head coach for the Cleveland Browns in 1991, there have been multiple coordinators, assistants, scouts and other personnel who have sought to create their own legacy to follow in the footsteps of their great mentor. Although some have fared better than others since leaving Belichick’s staff, the majority of his coaching family tree has experienced a degree of difficulty making the transition from acting behind-the-scenes to manning a franchise of their own. Here is a look at how the five most prominent graduates of Belichick’s Coaching Academy have performed since departing from their teacher.

Charlie Weis

When Belichick left the Jets to be named head coach of the Patriots in 2000, Weis followed him from New York to New England. Serving as the offensive coordinator until 2004, Weis engineered the initiation of the Erhardt-Perkins offensive system. Assisting in Tom Brady‘s development as the franchise quarterback, Weis helped guide the team to three Super Bowl titles before leaving the Patriots to take over as Notre Dame head coach in 2005. Since then, Weis has not enjoyed the same success as he did in New England. With a 35-26 mark and a 1-2 record in bowl games, Weis has recently come under massive scrutiny, allowing many to speculate that his days as the Fighting Irish coach could be numbered. Indicating a 6-5 record was not good enough when he replaced Tyrone Willingham, Weis has already stated he would not argue with a firing if that is the end result.

Eric Mangini

Hired as the Patriots defensive coordinator in 2005 after serving as the defensive backs coach, Mangini left New England for the Jets in 2006. Accepting the job Belichick had turned down seven years earlier, Mangini instantly became Belichick’s nemesis, causing their relationship to sour. From avoiding postgame handshakes to refusing to acknowledge each other’s success, these two coaches spiced up a rivalry for three years. Referred to as “Fredo” (the disloyal son in “The Godfather”) by Patriots defensive lineman Ty Warren, Mangini opened the door for New England fans to detest him even further after accusing Belichick of recording the Jets’ defensive signals in 2007 during the infamous Spygate incident. In his three years overseeing the Jets, Mangini struggled, including a late-season collapse in 2008 that ultimately cost him his job. Mangini’s tenure in New York ended with a 23-25 record along with a 2006 AFC wild card playoff loss to the Patriots.

Now guiding the Browns, Mangini’s coaching career has gone from bad to worse. With a 1-8 record in the first year of a three-year deal, Mangini has drawn criticism for his strict coaching mechanisms and his inability to earn respect from his players.

Romeo Crennel

Winning three Super Bowls as defensive coordinator with the Patriots from 2001-04, Crennel was unable to carry his success over to the Browns. As Browns coach from 2005-08, Crennel failed to deliver a playoff berth, compiling a 24-40 record in four seasons. Entering 2008 with high expectations after a 10-6 2007 season, Crennel watched his young, talented team fall to a 4-12 record that led to his firing at year’s end, making way for Mangini to take over. Even though he is currently unemployed as a coach — opting to sit out this year while recovering from hip surgery — Crennel still can be seen on Sundays — in Coors Light commercials, that is.

Josh McDaniels

Starting out as a personal assistant with the Patriots in 2001, McDaniels assumed several coaching roles with the Patriots before becoming offensive coordinator in 2006. Agreeing to take over in Denver following the Mike Shanahan firing, McDaniels wasted no time sparking controversy in his new organization.

After reports were leaked indicating McDaniels had tried to aquire Matt Cassel from the Patriots to serve as his quarterback, an offended Jay Cutler requested a trade from the Broncos. The disgruntled quarterback was eventually dealt to the Bears.

The bickering did not end there. Wide receiver Brandon Marshall demanded to be traded during training camp after clashing with McDaniels. While McDaniels only suspended Marshall instead of granting him his request, he seemed to temporarily calm the storm as the Broncos began the season 6-0, including a Week 5 defeat of the Patriots by an overtime score of 20-17. With Denver having lost four straight since then, many wonder if McDaniels finally has become exposed. With the Broncos set to host the Thanksgiving night game against the Giants, only time will tell.

Nick Saban

In 1995, Saban was named defensive coordinator of the Browns under Belichick. After a successful tenure with Louisiana State University when he led the Tigers to a 2003 BCS national championship and was named the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year, Saban started his NFL head coaching career following the 2004 season, when he agreed to fill the Miami Dolphins‘ vacancy. In his two seasons with the franchise, Saban showed he had difficulty transitioning between the collegiate and professional level, going 15-17 before leaving the Dolphins to return to college. His decision to do so generated a significant degree of controversy. For the past three seasons, Saban has coached the Alabama Crimson Tide, who are 11-0 and ranked No. 2 in the AP poll behind the University of Florida.

While Saban’s college history is decorated, his NFL career — like those of many of the Belichick coaching progeny — is remembered only for its mediocrity and controversy.

Read More: alabama, broncos, Browns, Charlie Weis