Saturday, November 29, 2008


So, with Thanksgiving and work this week, I have not had time to do anything ND related (although I am sure that part of this has to deal with last weekend's game). If I get a chance, I will do IBG later, but I am thinking that is not going to happen.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Irish Blogger Gathering: We Don't Need No Stinkin' Theme!

Welcome to this week's Irish Blogger Gathering! This week, we are hosted by Three Guys in a Basement. With pictures this week!

1. If you had the choice, which professional athlete would you rather be: A golfer on the PGA tour that hovers around 125-150 on the money list, a solid middle reliever in the MLB, a # 4 starter on an MLB team, a tenth man on an NBA roster, or a punter in the NFL?

No question here – a golfer that hovers around 125-150 on the money list. Some reasons:
  • You get to spend significant portions of the year in warm climates.
  • Not only are you spending most of the year in warm climates, but you are spending that time in some of the most stunning places on earth.

Option A: Pebble Beach

Option B: Buffalo

  • I would get to play a “sport” where drinking is encouraged while you play (OK, so, strictly speaking, this does not include time on the course during tournament play. However, given the amount of time one would spend on the course outside of tournament play, it’s fair to say that there would be plenty of drinking time). Same goes for smoking, which I might have to take up if I were to join the PGA.

2. If they made a movie about the history of Notre Dame football from 1997-2008, what actors would you cast as Bob Davie, Tyrone Willingham, George O'Leary and Charlie Weis? Picture comparisons will be helpful.

So many to choose from. Here goes, with some explanation. Or not.

Al Pacino and Bob Davie. Fellow tanorexics, unite!

Ty Willingham and LeVar Burton. One played a blind guy, one just coached like he was blind.

Chelcie Ross and George O'Leary. He's the dude who played Dan Devine in Rudy. He probably spent more time acting as a Notre Dame coach than George O'Leary spent as actual coach.

Ethan Suplee as Charlie Weis. THERE IS NO EASTER BUNNY!

3. We at (see JoeG) love the drink Sparks, which comes in Orange cans. While I can't truly relate that to any type of question, I figured I'd mention that because we are playing the Orange this weekend. I guess if I had to tie it in, I would say that I associate Sparks with football tailgates (and my subsequent lack of recollection of the game). Do you have a favorite product that comes in the color Orange? And if so, do you relate it to football in any way shape or form?

Clementines. Those things are like crack. I eat entire boxes of the things without even realizing what I have done (between admitting to this eating habit and my love of beer, people are going to assume that I am horribly obese).

One of these women may be Sarah.

4. This last weekend, one of the more die-hard Notre Dame fans I know told me that he has twice rooted against Notre Dame. Is there any scenario where you would root against Notre Dame? Or should we make this friend (and guest columnist) be the next Ice-T in Surviving the Game?

I can think of several situations where I would definitely root against Notre Dame, but all involve terrorists/kidnappers threatening close family members with torture or death if I don’t root against Notre Dame. So, those situations are pretty unlikely to occur, unless I start hanging out with a very different crew.

Let the terrorists win, or cheer against Notre Dame...decisions, decisions.

4. will host (in allegiance with and a tailgate for the USC game. First off, you are all cordially invited. Secondly, and more importantly, we are looking for necessities to have at a tailgate. The following is what we will have:

What else do we need? What else would you bring? How can we make this tailgate any better?

A football. However, watch for any errant throws, as this has led to multiple problems at tailgates I have hosted.

If you see this man at a nearby tailgate, perhaps you should hide the football (I keed, I keed. Sort of).

Friday, November 14, 2008

Navy Live Blog!

I'll be over at Subway Domer tomorrow for a live blog of the game. Drop by, and see what inane things I have to say when I don't have a chance to go back and edit my words (and by this, I mean things that are more inane than when I do have a chance to go back and edit my words).

Go Irish!

Dr. Lou Shares His Wisdom

Another Dr. Lou post. I can't get enough.

But before I get to the video, I have to note that Rece Davis is a brave man for using the 1993 ND season against Lou in an argument during halftime of the Virginia Tech-Miami game last night. There was a moment there that I thought things were going to take a bad turn (even Mark May seemed taken aback by the comment, which is quite amazing).

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Irish Blogger Gathering: Through the Past Darkly Edition

Welcome to another edition of the Irish Blogger Gathering! This week, it is brought to you by the Brawling Hibernian. And here are my answers - be forewarned, there is a lot of Brady Quinn love in here today.

1. In the parlance of DJs, a "deep cut" is a song that wasn't released as a single and, generally, is not well-known. Oftentimes, these end up being the best songs on the album. What Notre Dame victory is your favorite "deep-cut" from the Irish catalog? In other words, what is your favorite victory that is not widely celebrated (i.e., not the "Snow Bowl" or the 1988 Miami game, etc.). Explain in much detail.

Maybe because it was the last game I watched from the student section (even though I was no longer a student), or because it was Brady Quinn's last home game, or because it just seemed like things were on track for the Irish, but my favorite "deep cut" game is the Army game from 2006. The game itself was an easy victory, and a ton of fun to be at, but it was more memorable for me because of the hope it gave me that ND would beat USC the next week, and maybe, just maybe, get a shot at the National Championship. Sitting (or rather, standing) a few feet from Brady Quinn when he started the "Beat SC" chant only added to the hope that the game gave me, only to have that hope crushed the next weekend.

2. As much fun as it is rooting for our heroes, it can be just as enjoyable to trash those we consider villains. A few years ago, the great Irish blog, Blue-Gray Sky, wrote a post discussing the biggest villains in Irish history. That post focused on external villains. Today's question is, of those associated with the program, who is the biggest villain? This individual must have been a player, coach or administrator at ND who, through reckless acts of cowardice, stupidity or malice, damaged the football program. (Note: Ty Willingham is off the board)

I am jumping on the Kevin White bandwagon. The reasons are myriad (the extremely strange barnstorming choices for ND games, the football coach hiring and firing debacles, the selling off of the ND brand/jumbotron fear, the crap BCS deal, etc.), and not always entirely his fault.

However, in the end, these things were his responsibility. The state of ND football is not as good as it should be, and the blame for that falls squarely at his feet, because he was the man ultimately responsible for the state of athletics at ND. Kevin White was not a Notre Dame man, and I think it showed, in the way he failed to understand and act in the best interest of the football team.

3. Falling in love is a wonderful thing. As Lt. Frank Drebin once noted, "you begin to notice things you never knew were there before; birds singing, dew glistening on a newly formed leaf, stoplights." Descibe the moment you knew that there would be no other; you were in love with Notre Dame.

My initial thought was to answer the 2003 game against Florida State at Notre Dame during my first year of law school. I stayed in the stands until the end of that horrible, horrible showing by the Irish, enduring a typical late fall day in South Bend (complete with sun, rain, sleet, and snow!). Even as the stands around me emptied, I stood there with a friend, knowing that the Irish had no chance to come back and win the game, but dedicated to getting through the game at all costs.

However, after further thought, I realized that, although I knew I loved Notre Dame at this moment, I wasn't in love with Notre Dame yet (how's that for a girly statement?). To get to that stage, I had to live through more bad times, more good times, and a coaching change.

The moment I knew I was in love with Notre Dame came a year and a few months later, at the first Blue-Gold game of the Charlie Weis era. It was a day similar to the day of the Florida State game, except it seemed colder and there wasn't really any nice part of the day, unlike at the Florida State game. The game meant absolutely nothing, and one of my friends and I shivered under a blanket in the stands, watching a glorified scrimmage and loving every minute of it. It was at that moment - when I was willing, a week or two before finals, to sit outside in the freezing late spring cold to watch this new coach in the awful weather, at a meaningless game - that I knew I was in love with the Irish. I would not have suffered through this for any other team, and I certainly wouldn't have enjoyed it as much as I did.

4. Regrets, we've had a few but, then again, too few to ever let go of any of them. What game or specific play in Irish history turns your dreams into nightmares and haunts your every waking moment? Describe this torment and why you wish ND could have another crack at it?

Bush Push. I have never watched it since I saw it that day in the stadium (this involves a lot of eye shutting and plugging of the ears like a little child when it comes on television), yet it still haunts me. It is seared in my memory, never to be let go. I have already relived it for one of these posts, so I won't do it again (it's just awful for me to think about). The joy of ND getting another crack at this one would be that we all know the rule that governs this now, so I am sure the result would be different (and yes, I would take a better result, even if it came because of a penalty).

5. With 79 consensus All-Americans and 48 inductees in the College Football Hall of Fame, it is clear that there have been many great players in the history of Notre Dame football. What was the greatest single season from a player that you ever witnessed during your Irish fandom? Be specific. Use adjectives.

My ND fandom is not very long, and I am going with an obvious one here - Brady Quinn, 2005. The young man who showed up for the Pitt game to open that season was a changed young man from the year before. This new Brady Quinn looked like he owned Heinz Field, and the season just confirmed that he was for real, especially as he went on to own many more places. That it coincided with my last year at Notre Dame only helped make it an even more special year in my mind.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

The Doctor Is In

I am slightly obsessed with Dr. Lou. But who doesn't love Lou?

"You're bad luck!"

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Irish Blogger Gathering: The “Saying A Lot By Asking Obtuse Questions” Edition

It's yet another edition of the Irish Blogger Gathering - and the last one before my new computer (finally) arrives, and I can get back to the level of obsession that I should be displaying toward ND football. The answers this week are short, because I am getting this done between tasks at work (not exactly conducive to quality product, but I will hopefully make up for it next week). So, with apologies for complete lack of quality, my responses for the week!

1. What photo of some member of the 2008 Irish squad doing something, anything at all, really, says all 1,000 words that need to be said about this team? OR, which photo of some member of the 2008 Irish squad doing something would tell 1,000 lies about this team if you only saw the photo and didn't know better? (Double-secret word score bonus for answering both mutations of the same question)

I couldn't come up with an actual picture that showed it, but how about Chris Stewart injuring himself coming on to the field. The truth? This team can be extremely frustrating at times. Getting hurt running on to the field = inability to finish and win games. I'm pretty sure it doesn't lie about this team, though. So no double secret word score bonus for me.

2. Some of you may know that I ( am a football stat geek. Which statistic do you think geeks like myself should really be paying attention to this season and why? (Can pertain to ND or CFB in general.)

How about wins? Seriously. One more and ND is bowl eligible. At this point, that's the one that's immediately on my mind.

(I may have taken the Pitt loss badly).

3. Seeing as how Boston College is nothing but an up-jumped program enjoying the luxury and soft Corinthian leather of an ACC schedule, which team from the current top 25 would you love to see this year's Irish play this weekend in Fredo's stead? Why? Do you think the Irish would win? Describe the game. Paint us a picture! I'll get the popcorn!

Can I pick a rematch against Pitt? Seriously, I want a second go at that one. This time, we stick with the run. Jimmy manages not to overthrow open people. The defense stops Shady all game long. ND is up by 3 TDs at the half (1 run by Allen, 1 long one to Floyd, and 1 sneak in by Jimmy), and ND wins by at least 30.

4. Let's dispose of the gradient colors and subtle vagaries of college football for a moment and answer this question with one of the supplied, absolute answers and a blurb defending your pick. No waffling! The Question: Why is Notre Dame unable to put away games when leading going into half time? The possible answers: 1) ND Players all have a soft, nougat center 2) The Coaches don't want to tick off potential future employers 3) God doesn't think it's classy to blow a team out 4) The ND Fanbase can't really stomach blowouts any more than they could stomach a protracted land war in Asia. Remember, you must pick one and you must defend it with great vigor!

Answer: 1 - ND Players all have a soft, nougat center.

It's pretty easy to come to this conclusion - a bunch of kids raised in schools where success often takes a backseat to making everyone feel good about themselves, where they got used to winning without having to work for anything, and now they find themselves in a situation that whatever they do, it looks better than what they did last year, and they get credit for that improvement, as if five wins is great (and I'm guilty of helping promote that latter thought). Until they have a reason to toughen up, they will fall back on being soft on the inside, because it is easier and everyone loves it.

Ah, but there is hope - leave that candy out for a few weeks, and that sucker will be hard as a rock. Here's to hoping that the ND players can go from that soft, nougat center to hard and solid at their core. Preferably as soon as possible.

5) Tennessee just began celebrating the career of Phil Fulmer today as he announced that he'd been given the opportunity to make it look like resigning was his idea. Certainly, this is a clarion call to ADs across the country to begin worrying over their tea that, should their current HC not work out, they wont get a shot at #s 1-5 on their candidate list. Tell us about an AD who may be looking at this move by Tennessee and acting a bit more aggressively towards a reduction in force of his current football staff now rather than later. And who might that AD be trying to seduce before Tennessee already has a "hand shake agreement" with the guy?

I'm going out on a crazy limb here, and saying that Barry Alvarez sees the writing on the wall with Bret Bielema and kicks his butt to the curb before any significant damage is done to Wisconsin football. I have no idea who Barry would want to go after, but perhaps Lane Kiffin? He grew up in the region, after all.

Gosh, I harbor a lot of hate toward Wisconsin.