Brian Kelly understands that recent College Football Playoff losses at Notre Dame, particularly to SEC teams, may be viewed as a factor in his decision to take the LSU job.

“Losing spurs me toward building,” Kelly said. “So no, that never knocked my confidence that we couldn’t continue to build toward winning a national championship. If you remember my comments after we lost to Alabama is we’re back. We’re going to come back. Even though we lost 10 players to the draft, we were back again. Losing’s not something I look at as, ‘Well, I’m going to throw the towel in.’ Losing just forces me to roll my sleeves up and look at reasons why we need to get better.”

Kelly then explained why the SEC has been so dominant. Against ranked SEC opponents, Kelly is 2-4, including losses to Alabama in 2020, 31-14, Georgia in 2019, 23-17. Ironically, Notre Dame had a pair of wins over LSU in 2017 and 2014, but also other losses to Georgia and Alabama in 2017 and 2012.

“The SEC has obviously an ability to continuously turn out great football teams based upon a commitment from the university, great recruiting, great coaches to play at the highest level,” Kelly said. “And they’ve consistently done that and they’ve earned it by what they’ve done on the field. So everything that they’ve gotten, they’ve deserved and as I said, if LSU was in another conference, I would be interested in LSU in another conference, too, because of the leadership, the commitment and the alignment that I’ve talked about so much.”

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