Monday, October 17, 2005

Sights and Sounds from the latest Game of the Century | by Pat

A few things from outside the white lines...

The Pope Needs Two

The NBC cameras caught famous football alumni like Joe Montana and Ronnie Lott and John Robinson was rumored to be catching his first game in ND Stadium as a fan, but that wasn't the end of the VIP visiting list.

Just in case you missed the gravity of this game, here's a short list of the reported attendees: Eagles coach Andy Reid, Patriots owner Robert Kraft, Supreme Court justice Clarence Thomas, actor Martin Short, ambassador to the Vatican Francis Rooney.
Oh, and Jay says he saw Nick Lachey, which is nice.

Growing it long

Much was made before the game of the length of the grass on the field. Personally, I didn't see anything wrong with it.

Wearing O' the Green

I was surprised as anyone when the Irish emerged from the tunnel clad in green jerseys. And one of my first reactions was, well, if you're going to do it, at least you did it right. In his presser, Coach Weis credits Henry Scroope. Nice to know someone understands what green should look like, and when it should be used.

View from the Student Section

Southern Cal fan Brendon Loy managed to record parts of the game from his seat in the ND student section. The posted video is of the final, painful few seconds of the game, but gives a unique perspective as students rush the field as the clock hits 00:00 (the first time).

(Quick note: shaking your keys as a noisemaker is never a good idea. Yell, scream, clap your hands, but keep your keys in your pocket. Thanks for your cooperation.)

Always teaching

I wanted to say hats off to Coach Weis for stopping in the Trojan locker room after a crushing defeat.
After the game Bush was standing outside the Trojans' locker room and was greeted by Weis, still in his game-day attire. Weis congratulated him on a great game and asked to see Pete Carroll, who was in a press conference. With Carroll gone, Bush walked into the Trojans' locker room and said Weis was outside. As players began to hush each other, Weis walked in and congratulated the team. "Hey fellas, I just want to wish you luck. That was a...hard fought battle and I hope you win out."
As it turns out, Weis was also using the post-game congrats as a parenting lesson for his son Charlie.
I was only in there for about 30 seconds. It wasn't like I wanted to be there. I just felt it was the right thing to do....I went back, to be honest with you, and sat down with Charlie and explained to him the difference between how it's easy to be nice when you've won versus how tough it is to be nice when you've lost. I thought it was a good lesson for my son. the only song we know...

Kudos to the Notre Dame Band. After absorbing the same gut punch as the rest of us, they still marched out to midfield (once the celebrating Trojans finally left) and immediately launched into a renedition of "Fight On" as the customary sign of respect to the opposing team. I can't imagine that such a simple song has ever been so hard to play.

Sorry for being a jackass

It seems that the emotion and energy spent during the game left Reggie Bush a little chastened, as his post-game reaction to his in-game celebrations attest.
It takes arrogance to do what Bush did during that same drive: bolting through the line, sprinting into the open field, grandly gesturing with one hand as he neared the end zone, and then slowing down just as he crossed the goal line. That's when Notre Dame safety Tom Zbikowski, who never gave up on the play, popped Bush with a hit the USC tailback so richly deserved.

"That was my fault," said a contrite Bush. "That was my way of showing off. Completely bad leadership on my behalf."
From the Mailbag...

Reader Patrick chimes in.
As what should be the starting point for all true fans of the Irish, I would ask that you consider posting this note. Many of us went into the weekend with full faith and confidence in the Irish. For some that faith and confidence may had led individual's to place wagers amongst friends, associates, perhaps a local individual or a larger gaming establishment. An irrelevent sidebar to Saturday's effort was that many of those wagers were considered "won" by virtue of the point spread. Receipt of said blood money will undoubtedly stain one's soul. Such money should be donated to truly needy and deserving causes. The three links below are Notre Dame associated charities that would put the money to good use.
Ara's website "The Ara Parseghian Medical Research Foundation, a volunteer, nonprofit corporation, funds research projects that will lead to a treatment and cure for Niemann-Pick Type C disease."

Hannah and Friends run by Maura Weis Hannah & Friends is a nonprofit foundation dedicated to providing a better quality of life for children and young adults affected by Autism and Global Delays."

Chris Zorich's foundation "Our credo is 'One Purpose, One Goal,' which is to provide assistance and opportunities to disadvantaged Chicagoans, while striving to foster a sense of caring and fellowship, which crosses race, religious, economic, and social boundaries."

Good point, Patrick. A loss is a loss, and a gambling win doesn't make it any sweeter -- you can bet on that. So put that filthy lucre towards a good cause.