Saturday, April 18, 2009

Classic Lou | by Jay

From the liveblog earlier this morning...

9:00 AM. There was a star-studded cast Saturday morning on the Notre Dame football practice fields, as some 70 former Irish players in t-shirts and shorts went through tryouts and workouts for the July 25 Notre Dame Japan Bowl. Among the familiar names? Tony Rice, Bobbie Howard, Brandon Hoyte, Mike Goolsby, Jeff Burris, Ray Zellars, Tim Ruddy, Jeremy Akers, Shane Walton, Bobby Brown. The oldest candidate? Kris Haines, a senior on the '78 team. Notre Dame film/television/theatre professor Ted Mandell was all over the field, filming a documentary on the Japan Bowl experience. There were a variety of media in attendance, some following Lou Holtz (and his staff) as he went from position group to position group. All the players ran 40-yard dashes to determine speed and conditioning. The players wore shirts with the Japan Bowl logo on the front and the adidas logo on the back. After the practice session, Holtz kidded that most of the announcements coming were about food. He suggested that about 52 players would be selected today and that there would be some alternates "in case I shoot somebody!" Holtz's last comments to the squad were: "This will be one of the great experiences you will have. That's my commitment to you." At his press conference, Holtz said, "We'll ask all these guys to play five plays as hard as they can, then we'll give `em mouth-to-mouth resuscitation until we can get `em back in there."
For much more on the the Notre Dame Japan Bowl, here's the homepage with all the details. The game will feature a group of Notre Dame all-stars (who tried out today) against the Japanese Senior national team on July 25th.

Update: here are some photos from the tryouts care of Irish Illustrated.