Well boys and girls, tomorrow is the big day. Irish football is back. This little countdown has been fun, I hope it’s made you pumped for the year. For some reason back in school my roomate Dave and I always decided the best way to get ready was to start blasting this song at 8 AM and start drinking. Can’t fault College logic. It may be cheesy but I love this damn song and man does it get me ready for some football.
Who else is ready for some football baby?? I’m on my way up to the Bend to watch the Irish put a beatdown on Nevada. It’s time to shut up the haters and doubters. It’s time to put the last two years behind us like the horrible memory they are. It’s time to win some damn football games baby! GO IRISH BEAT WOLFPACK!!!
Come on kids, who do you think we are going to look at today? There have been many great players at Notre Dame to wear the number 3 during their time in South Bend, but nobody left the legacy that Joe Montana did. The following is a little long, and in two parts, but there are some great clips and stories so it’s worth the watch.
Closer and closer. If you saw the link earlier to my picks, please feel free to join in on the fun. As for today, let’s go back to 1988 once again to the last QB to lead the Irish to a national title, Tony Rice. Here’s hoping we can add another name to that list real soon. Enjoy the highlights:
This is something I did on my real blog all last year and was a lot of fun. I keep a running tally on a scoreboard which will show up in the side bar on that site throughout the year. Come play along won’t you?
The most telling quote from this unbiased account: “With the sense of forward momentum created by the returning talent, though, anything less than that starts to get dicey, considering the number of winnable games ND would have to blow to not get to nine wins.”
I will give more in-depth predictions later but here is my gut instinct:
S05 NEVADA- W S12 @ Michigan - W S19 MICHIGAN ST. - W S26 @ Purdue 8pm - W O03 WASHINGTON - W O17 SOUTHERN CAL - L O24 BOSTON COLLEGE - W O31 Washington St. - W N07 NAVY - W N14 @ Pittsburgh - L N21 CONNECTICUT - W N28 @ Stanford - W
I think we give SC a hell of a game this year. Pitt isn’t all because of Pitt, I don’t see us getting through with just 1L, there will be another random drop, MSU could be, but they lost too much talent IMO. Stanford could very easily be changed w/ Pitt. The only game we should lose should be SC, but I’m thinking 10-2 for the record.
It being Sunday before the season starts, I thought today would be a bit of a more contemplative day here on the Countdown. Not only that, but I used Jerome Bettis already and he was the best #6 I could think of and am drawing a blank. Instead, thought we’d go with some of the more iconic places on campus that are definitely worth finding if you havent been to a gameday weekend. First up, the Grotto, since it is Sunday.
I’d be willing to bet over half of those candles have football prayers attached. Next up, the iconic Golden Dome:
Finally, Touchdown Jesus. While I’m glad that the school added seats in the 90’s to fill the stadium more, the first time I went you were able to see Touchdown Jesus from inside the stadium. It really was an awesome view. Here’s hoping the big guy has plenty of reasons to raise his arms in celebration:
Merely a week away kids, this time next week we will be just about at kickoff. As I’m a creature of habit, being 7 days out I’m sure you can guess who the video will be of today. Not since Ron Paulus has Beano Cook fallen in love with a QB the way he did with Jimmy Clausen. Clausen made plenty of enemies early on with his brash commitment announcement at the hall of fame, d-bag emu hair cut, and entitled attitude. Jimmy has come a long way since then however. He took his lumps Freshman year, a terrible year for the Irish and a season in which Clausen fought against elbow injuries that zapped the power from his arm. While Sophmore year still featured far more losses than any Irish fan wanted to see, Clausen showed vast improvement. Don’t believe me let’s compare the sophmore years of Jimmy and Brady Quinn:
With the exception of interceptions, Jimmy’s stats across the board look better than Brady Quinn’s. Now think about what Brady did the next year with Mo Sto and Samardzija. Many analysts across the country have said that ND this year has one of if not THE best WR grous in all the land. Jimmy should be poised for a huge breakout year, hopefully leading the Irish back to the BCS in his junior year, much like #10. To tide you over, here’s a highlight set of Clausen from last year:
Think about it kids, this time next week you will be planning tailgates or looking at tv schedules plotting your channel flipping fest for the next 24 hours. Or if you are like me getting ready for a Backer run to really get a football weekend started. I can’t wait to be back on campus in a week, few things in life are better than a ND football weekend. Also for those of you prone to wagering, the line is still ND-14 with a whopping 61 points for the over/under. Not surprising given these two offenses.
Enough of that though, back to today’s post. Known affectionately as the Snow Bowl, ND and Penn State had an epic battle on the last day of the 1992 season. The game finished with Lou going for it all knowing that ties are for little girls. When the option is to play with skirts on or go for 2 at the buzzer, you know what Lou is gonna do. Enjoy the days of Rick Mirer and Reggie Brooks. These were also my favorite version of ND’s uniforms, I loved the monogram on the shoulder pad, gold on the jersey, just a good look.
SINGLE DIGITS!! College football is so close I can practically taste it right now. Since we are 9 days away, it only seems fitting to take a look at #9 Tom Zbikowski. Zibby was one of the more exciting players to watch in recent ND history. He’s a hard hitting safety that’s got a great nose for the ball and a knack for returning punts for TDs. His career started with an amusing diary about his recruitment on ESPN (highly overshadowed by Willie Williams’ ridiculous exploits) and quickly shot up as he forced turnovers and injuries soon after taking the field. This video has some great plays from Zibby and an awesome track to it as well, enjoy:
Just to show he’s not a one trick pony, Zibby will also beat you down in the boxing ring. He was an amateur gold glove and was able to make his pro debut one offseason. His opponent thought he’d be cute and tweak Zibby by wearing an Ohio St. jersey following the Fiesta Bowl. That chump chose…poorly:
Let’s take a trip back to 2005. ‘05 was, by all accounts, a banner year for the Irish. Weis’ 1st year featured a prolific offense, the unleashing of Brady Quinn, and the long awaited debut of Jeff Samardzija since he actually got used. But the beginning of that year featured a lot of questions. Hopes were high, but anything was possible. ESPN became painful to watch as Mark May would bury ND’s chances at every point and Lee Corso came out saying ND would start 0-6. After a curbstomp of Pitt at Heinz Field (which I happily attended) as you can see at the start of the vid, Lee changed his pick…to 1-5. Going to the Big House for game 2 that year was a scary situation, Chad Henne, Hart, Breaston, Manningham…this team was freaking stacked. Not to mention the fact that the Big House isn’t exactly somewhere you want to go, as a player, or fan. Hell, I’m all for talking trash, I love it, but throwing full beers at the back of someone’s head, who you haven’t even been talking to, that’s a little over the top (I did enjoy the free beer though). But, let’s take a look at what happened (FF to about a minute in to skip the pregame)
I know I’ve already shown him a lot of love, but Michael Floyd is by far my favorite player on the Irish team right now. The kid came in with mad hype and delivered with one of the most productive Freshman seasons ND has ever seen, and thats after missing some games. Dude can play, and is only going to improve: