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Florida hires Weis away from Chiefs to run offense

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Charlie Weis will leave the Kansas City Chiefs to become the University of Florida's offensive coordinator, a source with knowledge of the situation said Saturday.

A formal announcement will come Monday, but the source said Weis will remain the Chiefs' offensive coordinator during their playoff run.

The Sporting News first reported Saturday that Weis had accepted the job.

Weis, hired to be Notre Dame's head coach five years ago after now-outgoing Florida coach Urban Meyer turned down the Irish to join the Gators, is joining Will Muschamp's first staff in Gainesville.

Before Weis accepted the job, Kansas City's WHB-AM cited a source in reporting that he was considering it because his son, who's graduating from high school this year, will work in the football office for Muschamp while attending Florida. According to the radio station, Weis' son was set to work under Muschamp at Texas, but he will go to Florida now that the coach is there.

With the Chiefs (10-5) headed to the playoffs as the AFC West champions, Weis won't go on the road recruiting for Florida for at least a week, but he will be able to call recruits.

The Chiefs' offense has made strides in its first season under Weis, ranking first in the NFL in rushing (167.5 yards per game), 28th in passing (192.1 yards per game) and ninth overall (359.6 yards per game).

Chiefs coach Todd Haley said Friday that he didn't have any knowledge of Weis possibly taking the job at Florida.

"It would be news to me," said Haley, whose Chiefs went from worst to first in the division this season.

With Weis leaving the Chiefs, former Denver Broncos coach Josh McDaniels, from the Bill Belichick family tree, could be a candidate because of his strong ties to Kansas City quarterback Matt Cassel -- a former New England player -- and his knowledge of the system. McDaniels also brings familiarity with AFC West personnel.

McDaniels is eager to return to the NFL as a coordinator and would be a natural to replace Weis, who won three Super Bowl rings in New England, then spent five years at Notre Dame.

Weis started fast with the Irish, winning 19 games in his first two seasons, but he was fired after the 2009 campaign with a 35-27 overall record.

Weis' strengths have been calling plays and recruiting, two things he'll be asked to do with the Gators.

Weis replaces Steve Addazio, who was under fire most of this season and received the blame for a Florida offense that sputtered in just about every game. Addazio coached his final game Saturday in the Outback Bowl, beating Penn State 37-24, after he took the head-coaching job at Temple last week.

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Muschamp, whose roots are on defense, said he wanted an offensive coordinator with college and NFL experience. He planned to scrap the spread-option offense in favor of a pro-style system.

Weis fits the bill perfectly, having tutored Cassel and Tom Brady with the Patriots and current NFL quarterbacks Brady Quinn and Jimmy Clausen at Notre Dame. Now Weis can work with John Brantley and maybe the top quarterback prospect in the country, Florida commitment Jeff Driskel.

The only concern with Weis might be health issues, something the Gators know all too well after Meyer's recent scares.

Weis had a bad knee that left him barely able to walk during training camp and then had an acute gall bladder infection that required surgery.

Weis also has battled weight problems for most of his life. He underwent gastric bypass surgery in 2002 and lost around 90 pounds. But he lapsed into a coma after the operation and sued for malpractice, eventually losing.

Weis' knee problem probably traces to an accident in 2008 when one of his Notre Dame players ran into him during a game and tore his anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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