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Molnar replacement should be easy call

12/8/2011

The Charley Molnar era — and with it, the FBS era — begins for Massachusetts on Thursday. UMass athletics proudly says so on its home page.

In losing his offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly says goodbye to a man who has been with him the past six years, through his stops at Central Michigan, Cincinnati and now with the Irish.

When introduced Thursday, Molnar said he would remain on Notre Dame's staff through the Champs Sports Bowl, three weeks away.

Fortunately for Kelly, who calls the plays anyway, he should not have to look far to fill Molnar's vacancy. Irish offensive line coach and running game coordinator Ed Warinner served as offensive coordinator under Mark Mangino at Kansas from 2007-09. The Jayhawks finished eighth, 21st and 25th, respectively, in total offense under Warinner.

In 2007, when Kansas went 12-1 and beat Virginia Tech in the Orange Bowl, it ranked second in the nation in scoring offense.

Warinner, like Molnar, coached the quarterbacks while at Kansas, leading the Jayhawks to the 17th, eighth and seventh overall passing attacks in those three seasons.

The choice seems like an easy one for Notre Dame, which can afford to lose an offensive mind when it is already run by one in Kelly.

Speaking of Kansas and offensive minds, the Jayhawks made news of their own Thursday shortly after Molnar's move became official. Irish fans may have heard of Kansas' new coach — Charlie Weis.