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Tuesday August 2, 2011 Charlie Weis, Gator fans and 'Cheeseburgers in Paradise'

Updated: 7:26am, August 3

In his brief time as Florida’s new offensive coordinator, former Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis has been reminded more than once about a comment he made nearly five years ago.

Weis said he was just trying to be funny and figured fans would pick up on his Jimmy Buffet reference. He now chuckles at the misunderstanding when talking to Gator fans about a comment he made during the 2006 season about Florida.

Gators offensive coordinator Charlie Weis


During an off week that season, the Fighting Irish dropped in the national polls and BCS standings after a last-minute win over UCLA. The Gators were one of the teams that jumped Notre Dame that week – and they were idle.

“One of the teams [Tennessee] that jumped us had the same game that we had. They're down, they're playing at home and they win by a field goal," Weis said at the time. "Another team [Florida] that jumped us wasn't even playing. They were home eating cheeseburgers and they end up jumping us.

“That befuddles me. Tell me how that works? Maybe I'm just stupid.”

A few hundred miles south of South Bend, the comment drew ire. Needless to say, Gator fans weren’t nearly as high on Weis then as they are now. Weis recently addressed the quote at a Gator Gathering in Ocala to clear up any confusion.

“I’m a very witty, witty person. Not sarcastic – witty,’’ Weis joked. “So I said, ‘I guess I should have been eating cheeseburgers down in Florida and maybe we would have gone up in the polls. I happen to be a big Margaritaville type of guy. Who’s that guy down in the Florida Keys? And there are a lot of songs that he sings and ‘Cheeseburgers in Paradise’ is one of them.

“I just figured everybody in Florida would have gotten it. But they obviously didn’t on that one. I took shots for like three years on that one.’’

As Weis told the story, the more than 300 Gator fans in attendance laughed along, so maybe now it’s finally “Cheeseburgers in Paradise” for everyone.

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