"20 years holding back a collective tidal wave of jism"
November 29, 2012 1:42 AM   Subscribe

Former college football powerhouse Notre Dame hasn't won a national title in a long time (1988, natch). They have a rabid fan-base (arguably the biggest in college sports) and the largest TV deal in the nation with NBC. This season they came from pretty much out of nowhere to land a spot in the national title game. The problem, however, is that the school and its fans are in fact horrible, no-good people. Presenting Drew Magary's A-Z Hater's Guide to Notre Dame!

"Catholicism: No football program wears its religion on its sleeve more than Notre Dame. Even BYU isn't obnoxious enough to have Jesus overlooking the end zone. It's that kind of 'we're more special than you' attitude that makes me hope that Satan will one day crawl out of the Earth's mantle and raze the entire Notre Dame campus with a single crack of his fire lash."
posted by bardic (115 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
Satan will one day crawl out of the Earth's mantle and raze the entire Notre Dame campus with a single crack of his fire lash.

You misspelled "Saban".
posted by BitterOldPunk at 1:56 AM on November 29, 2012 [43 favorites]


While I have my doubts that Magary will go over well on Metafilter (it's like that awkward moment when two of your friends from utterly different circles meet each other), as someone born in Michigan, raised (partly) in Illinois, yes Notre Dame is evil and should feel bad for being. Not being evil. Existing full stop.
posted by Ghidorah at 2:04 AM on November 29, 2012 [6 favorites]


It's that kind of 'we're more special than you' attitude that makes me hope that Satan will one day crawl out of the Earth's mantle and raze the entire Notre Dame campus with a single crack of his fire lash.

he already designed the road system in northern south bend - it's bad enough on a normal day, i can't imagine what it's like on game day
posted by pyramid termite at 2:38 AM on November 29, 2012


all these reasons to hate and yet not one of them is that they can't pronounce their own fucking name right.
posted by corvine at 2:58 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


That's because they misspelled it. It's really spelled "Votre Maman."
posted by eriko at 3:27 AM on November 29, 2012 [12 favorites]


I have a name with "Mc" in it. My dad is a Notre Dame fan. My city has no good college football team and my state's good college football team has just had their equivalent of a saint busted for looking the other way on child molestation.

My professional football team is injured at nearly every position and in a state of epic collapse. My baseball team has just had our most beloved player suspended for 25 games. My basketball team traded for a superstar who will never play for them. Hockey does not exist.

Any potential flaws kept in mind, I'm okay with being an Irish fan this year.

The SEC is overrated and boring as hell anyway.
posted by Drinky Die at 3:30 AM on November 29, 2012 [5 favorites]


The problem, however, is that the school and its fans are in fact horrible, no-good people.

Problem? When did that become a problem in the world of football?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:35 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I still haven't forgiven them for how they treated that poor hunchback.
posted by Faint of Butt at 4:05 AM on November 29, 2012 [23 favorites]


That article sucks. Sorry, but it does.
posted by Eyebeams at 4:07 AM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


The butthurt Notre Dame fans even show up on Metafilter!

Seriously: read everything Drew writes...he has a gift.
posted by kuanes at 4:09 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Because the truth is that Notre Dame is the college football team for people who don't like college football. They're a novelty, a program designed to capture the attention of casual casual casual casual college football fans—New York-media types who believe that something is relevant only when they've deigned to pay attention to it. These are the people who say they're rooting for Notre Dame because "they're a great story," which is what you say when you're a front-running douchebag.

And the Nintendo Wii is a console for people who aren't serious gamers!

And Comic Con is full of casual fans who only go there to wear costumes!

And X attracts people who don't meet my personal definition of Y!

I'm not a football fan, but I couldn't help but notice what the author is saying here
posted by RonButNotStupid at 4:23 AM on November 29, 2012 [5 favorites]


The problem, however, is that the school and its fans are in fact horrible, no-good people.

Never met an Alabama crowd, I guess?
posted by Thorzdad at 4:36 AM on November 29, 2012 [6 favorites]


Say what you will about Notre Dame fans but I have yet to hear about one putting his junk on passed out man's head. That should count for something, right?

San Dimas Football Rules!
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 4:39 AM on November 29, 2012 [6 favorites]


I implore all of you to head over to NDNation.com. It truly is "The Most Crotchety Place On The Interwebs"

The pull quote he uses doesn't even come close to the top ten "Things could only be said by angry old white men over a Dewars Rocks or six"
posted by JPD at 5:01 AM on November 29, 2012


Why is the mascot Irish when the school name is mispronounced French? And its in the US. And is it a Catholic school?

(I"m Australian - I have no idea about these things).
posted by mary8nne at 5:02 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


And X attracts people who don't meet my personal definition of Y!

When it comes to sports, I don't think that's a fair criticism. Just as an example, pre-steroids-are-everywhere awareness, baseball was carried by the home run races between Sosa and McGwire and Bond. Home runs (from what I understand, because, gah, baseball) aren't really even the most important thing, yet that's the thing the fan that doesn't know any better will latch onto.

In basketball, the scoring champion is almost never the consensus best player in the league. Tim Duncan, for example, might be the least popular 'famous' player, but he's also probably the best team player of the last decade. Basketball fans who are passionate about the game, who invest time in it, will know how much a player like Omer Asik meant to the the Bulls last year, and will understand why the Rockets paid so much to pry him away. The casual fan doesn't have any idea why Houston gave this funny looking Turkish guy forty million dollars and laughs at them.

What Magary is railing against is that ignorant asshole who inserts himself into a previously interesting conversation between people who are somewhat invested in the topic and says "durhurr, the Yankees/Cowboys/Lakers are awesome!"

Because seriously, fuck that guy.
posted by Ghidorah at 5:04 AM on November 29, 2012 [12 favorites]


Catholic School, historically very heavily Irish-American tilt to its student base. Yes the name is mispronounced French.
posted by JPD at 5:04 AM on November 29, 2012


There is a great gif going around of a Gold Helmet with a reflected image of a dude in a Yankees jersey, with a Lakers jersey underneath that, and his face painted like a Man U fan.
posted by JPD at 5:06 AM on November 29, 2012 [7 favorites]


Dude, take a valium. Do yoga. Meditate. Breathe. Calm down. Find your happy place.

So much anger can't be healthy.
posted by zarq at 5:06 AM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


I'm not exactly a big ND fan (though I did attempt grad school there for a year or so), but damn anything that breaks up this fucking SEC stranglehold on college football can only be a good thing. I was fucking pissed that Oregon and K-State managed to fuck up their seasons. For once, I thought, we might have had a SEC-free championship. At least this year it won't be two fucking SEC teams. Ugh.
posted by kmz at 5:13 AM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


I went to high school with head coach Brian Kelly in the 1970s. Though my overall experience of those years was such that I can hardly bear to revisit them without becoming immediately bathed in a cold sweat, I have a very clear memory of Brian as a tremendously hard-working and thoroughly decent person, and I am delighted for his success.

Not sure if it's enough to dissuade Magary from his hate-a-thon, but it would take a lot to convince me that Brian Kelly isn't one of the good guys.
posted by muhonnin at 5:23 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Other than last year the "SEC Stranglehold" could have easily been broken. The other team just had to win.

(I wanted Bama/ND vs Oregon. I think a Bama-ND game is going to be boring as hell. ND is basically Bama light)
posted by JPD at 5:25 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm sorta hoping Georgia wins the SEC championship because of a series of bullshit penalties, bizarre turnovers and fluke injuries to Alabama starters.

And then absolutely crushes ND.*

So that we can go around saying that our 3rd or 4th best team (which required lots of luck and a soft schedule just to make it to the conference championship) is still better than the best teams anywhere else.

SEC! SEC! SEC!

(*Disclaimer: I actually mostly like ND and I hate UGA with a white-hot passion. So, I don't really hope for this. Although I do want the streak to continue. SEC! SEC! SEC!)
posted by oddman at 5:37 AM on November 29, 2012 [6 favorites]


Two things that Drew didn't mention (but are mentioned in the comments). The coach of Notre Dame is the same one that told a student to videotape practice in 50+ mph winds. The student died.

A woman said she was assaulted by a Notre Dame football player. She was then threatened by other students and ended up killing herself.
posted by drezdn at 5:41 AM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


Why is the mascot Irish when the school name is mispronounced French? And its in the US. And is it a Catholic school?

Founded (& named) by French Catholics, but during the football mythmaking of the early 20th cen. the student body was heavily Irish: hence the mascot.

It's a private school, so it can indeed be religiously affiliated without breaking any laws, and it is pretty Catholic, in the sense of, e.g., every dorm having a chapel and daily mass. When I was there for law school I never felt any pressure to conform to or participate in anything (I was not, at the time, Catholic). (Probably the closest thing to any kind of religious pressure I experienced would have been an email from the Dean of the Law School informing us of an upcoming Red Mass and taking a bit about its cultural significance to Catholic lawyers, and recommending that we should attend if we wanted to, in a "here's a thing on campus that might be interesting to the student body as a whole" sort of a way.)

I think the article is hilarious, because it seems to me that the reasons are, in large part, the sorts of things that matter so very much when you've got a raging hate-on for something or someone, but that ultimately in the cold light of day are just stuff. They don't paint the end zones. They have a victory march. Some of their football players are dicks, or are annoying now that they are in the NFL. They won't give up a lucrative television contract!?! What are you going to do?

I feel like a lot of this kind of hatred, just like a lot of fandom, is about your confirmation biases as a viewer and a consumer of and participant in the commercial ecosystem of your sport. When (to pick a school at random) Iowa State's QB does something stupid off-field and gets in trouble for it, I care about that differently, and frankly a lot less, than if Michigan's QB had gotten into the same trouble, because ND has an ongoing football relationship with Michigan. Confirmation bias.

Notre Dame engages in a certain amount of self-mythologizing, but I'm not going to argue whether they do so to a much greater extent than any other team at their level because ultimately I don't think there's a great way to measure that sort of thing.
posted by gauche at 5:41 AM on November 29, 2012 [5 favorites]


Notre Dame actually did the nearly impossible and makes me root for the SEC team this year.
posted by drezdn at 5:42 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


They won't give up a lucrative television contract!?! What are you going to do?

The issue with the television contract is that, aside from this year, there hasn't been much reason to show Notre Dame football on television.
posted by drezdn at 5:44 AM on November 29, 2012


The problem, however, is that the school and its fans are in fact horrible, no-good
people.


This is kind of over-the-top editorializing, no? The whole post just seems like NOTRE DAME SUX AMIRITE?
posted by DWRoelands at 5:44 AM on November 29, 2012


Two things that Drew didn't mention (but are mentioned in the comments). The coach of Notre Dame is the same one that told a student to videotape practice in 50+ mph winds. The student died.

A woman said she was assaulted by a Notre Dame football player. She was then threatened by other students and ended up killing herself.


Yes. These things are tragic and should not have happened at all.
posted by gauche at 5:50 AM on November 29, 2012


"U" is for uncharged and discusses the sexual assault and suicide.
posted by bardic at 5:54 AM on November 29, 2012


The issue with the television contract is that, aside from this year, there hasn't been much reason to show Notre Dame football on television.

I absolutely get the frustration of not being able to watch your team's game. Totally. I've been there and it sucks, and I am sure it is particularly frustrating to out-market fans of other teams that ND gets a prime spot on national television every week.

But NBC has made a decision that the ad revenue is worth it, quality of the football being shown notwithstanding. And that's the reason to show Notre Dame football on television.
posted by gauche at 5:54 AM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


As an Irish Catholic kid whose parents did not go to college, I grew up a Notre Dame fan. I unlearned that my first week on campus at Purdue.

And I'm not worried. The SEC will crush ND in the championship game.
posted by COD at 5:57 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I present to you Tavern's no frills, 2 step guide to hating Notre Dame:

Step 1. Is it Notre Dame?
Step 2. Hate away!
posted by Tavern at 6:02 AM on November 29, 2012 [7 favorites]


Whoa, how dare this guy diss my most beloved cultural icon, whose fandom is a lifestyle more than a hobby??? Taylor Swift RULES.

Notre Dame does kinda suck tho.

posted by Potomac Avenue at 6:04 AM on November 29, 2012


Why is the mascot Irish?

That's been explained, but I wanted to add that it turned into one hell of a marketing windfall-- Americans of Irish extraction tend to take lots of interest and pride in their ancestral origins, and many Americans are of Irish extraction. You can't go wrong selling shirts, hats and tchotchkes with "IRISH" printed on them.

I also suspect that this has led to lots of people (who went to a sports-deficient university or have no post-secondary education) becoming fans when they get interested in college football.

This in turn adds to the dislike that some other folks feel for the football team-- the program has a national following that transcends the reach of the school: many, many fans of Notre Dame did not attend the university nor do they hail from the region. Lots of people have this religious idea that you must have a regional connection to a sports team to support them. I don't care about college sports very much, but I kind of understand this resentment: growing up I knew people in New England who were fans of the then-successful Dallas Cowboys, and I wanted to shove them into traffic.
posted by Mayor Curley at 6:08 AM on November 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


I didn't know anyone who went to a football game while I was at Humboldt State. Go Lumberjacks!
posted by Huck500 at 6:15 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


People usually hate Notre Dame for one reason above all: the subway alums.

For those unfamiliar, this is a derogatory nickname for bandwagon ND fans that goes back to the 1930s- the fans that used to show up on the subway to watch Notre Dame play games each year at Yankee Stadium in NY.

In other words, the subway alums didn't go to Notre Dame. They are the fans who love Notre Dame because they are Catholic or have an Irish last name. The fans who usually can't even tell you what state Notre Dame is located in. The fans who talk lots of garbage in years like this one. The fans who actually think Rudy is a good movie (any real ND fan should be bothered by Rudy... it treats Dan Devine horribly and glorifies a guy who might not be worth glorifying). The kind of fans that need Notre Dame to make their life meaningful.

Actual alums usually have a longsuffering calm about them and are usually fun to talk to, but 95% of the ND fans you will meet in your life are subway bandwagoners.
posted by Old Man McKay at 6:20 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm not exactly a big ND fan (though I did attempt grad school there for a year or so), but damn anything that breaks up this fucking SEC stranglehold on college football can only be a good thing. I was fucking pissed that Oregon and K-State managed to fuck up their seasons. For once, I thought, we might have had a SEC-free championship. At least this year it won't be two fucking SEC teams. Ugh.

I generally feel this way, but I still can't bring myself to root for Notre Dame. I don't have a college football team of preference (I'm from ACC basketball country), so I tend to wish well to whoever is new and interesting and that means that neither the SEC nor Notre Dame are particularly worthwhile in my book. Now, Oregon-Kansas State? I definitely would have watched that game.

If Georgia makes it, I'll root for Georgia because at least they haven't won a national title in a while. If Alabama makes it, obviously I'm rooting for Mayan Calendar Apocalypse.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 6:31 AM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


Ah, Notre Dame football always brings back the memory from 30 years ago of my blind Irish grandfather (no good SOB and a racist) listening to Notre Dame football games on the radio and raving about that good "Irish" player named McKinney who was in fact black.

Domer justice
posted by incandissonance at 6:41 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


In other words, the subway alums didn't go to Notre Dame. They are the fans who love Notre Dame because they are Catholic or have an Irish last name. The fans who usually can't even tell you what state Notre Dame is located in. The fans who talk lots of garbage in years like this one. The fans who actually think Rudy is a good movie (any real ND fan should be bothered by Rudy... it treats Dan Devine horribly and glorifies a guy who might not be worth glorifying). The kind of fans that need Notre Dame to make their life meaningful.

In other words, X attracts people who don't meet my personal definition of Y.

Seriously. They're fans. They may not be as dedicated and enthusiastic, or know enough trivia or lore as some people, but they're watching the games.
posted by RonButNotStupid at 6:43 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Duke still sucks.
posted by joe vrrr at 6:49 AM on November 29, 2012 [16 favorites]


Wait, I changed my mind. I'm hoping that Bama and UGA tie in the championship game (I don't care whether the rules allow it or not) and UF sneaks in on the strength of their computer rankings.

GO GATORS!

SEC! SEC! SEC!
posted by oddman at 6:49 AM on November 29, 2012


Seriously: read everything Drew writes...he has a gift.

I quite enjoyed his debut novel, The Postmortal.
posted by Ice Cream Socialist at 6:54 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


The one good thing that has come out of the NBC contract with Notre Dame is that the marching band(s) are actually shown live, in their entirety, on NBC's website at halftime.

Such a simple idea; I wish ESPN/ABC would do the same thing.

You don't even really need the cameramen there - just lock the camera on the 50 and shoot away.
posted by dforemsky at 6:54 AM on November 29, 2012


"For those unfamiliar, this is a derogatory nickname for bandwagon ND fans that goes back to the 1930s- the fans that used to show up on the subway to watch Notre Dame play games each year at Yankee Stadium in NY."

Largely because there were quotas keeping Catholics out of top East Coast colleges, and tiny little Notre Dame with all its Catholic Irish-German immigrants' sons was coming East and beating bigger, better-known schools. Because the American dream was inaccessible to most Catholic families of the era, Notre Dame, with its promise of a college education, came to represent the American dream to those families. That's why it looms so large in American Catholic thought and why there are so many extremely devoted subway alumni -- it represented that PEOPLE LIKE THEM could achieve the American dream, if not at Notre Dame, then somewhere, and that PEOPLE LIKE THEM could compete with the WASP establishment and win respect and/or football games.

Seems like someone ought to mention that for the first time, the team ranked #1 in BCS rankings is also ranked #1 in graduation rates for athletes. A lot of this sour-grapes haterade from media types is sportswriters who've been claiming for years that Notre Dame can never be "relevant" again (whatever that means) because they wouldn't drop their entrance requirements for athletes and require them to be actual students. Which is another way of saying, "College athletes are too dumb to be in college, we prefer the straight-up sharecropper model." Some of the articles I've read are saying, "Notre Dame obscures the problems in college football by doing what they're supposed to be doing, like Duke in basketball, and so people focus on that instead of on how the college-athlete system has broken down at 90% of schools. This system can't be destroyed until EVERYONE is playing dirty and treating students like disposable players whose education doesn't matter." Which is sort of like "I hope the GOP wins because we can't have real liberals until the Democrats are destroyed." Seems a little roundabout.

But I don't mind haters, because (old joke) there are two kinds of people in the world: Those who love Notre Dame, and those who didn't get in.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 7:02 AM on November 29, 2012 [16 favorites]


The sexual assault stories are horrifying and disgusting and should be a total indictment of the program.

But, there's plenty of things that should've been a total indictment of the whole system of major college athletics long before.

Having been an Alabama fan all my life, I was raised to hate Notre Dame. This is just all the more reason to continue. Roll Tide.
posted by ndfine at 7:02 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


The one good thing that has come out of the NBC contract with Notre Dame is that the marching band(s) are actually shown live, in their entirety, on NBC's website at halftime.

Such a simple idea; I wish ESPN/ABC would do the same thing.

You don't even really need the cameramen there - just lock the camera on the 50 and shoot away.


I think that CBS does this as well on their streaming broadcasts. I remember being very pleased at being able to watch LSU and Alabama's bands a couple of weeks ago during halftime.
posted by ndfine at 7:09 AM on November 29, 2012


I think what makes you a "legitimate" college sports fan* is an interesting question. On the one hand, there's an obvious way to become a fan of a college team, by attending the school, but not every fan of a team went to the school, and a lot of people have their allegiance set well before they're college age. By way of example, I'm a Carolina fan. I didn't go to UNC, no one in family went to UNC, but somehow people in my family** become Carolina fans. So my status as a Carolina fan dates to when I was really little and would watch games with my grandmother. That said, when I wear a Carolina shirt (or my spiffy new Carolina tie, thanks in-laws) people assume that I have some connection to the school when I don't. Personally, I don't think my status as a fan is more or less legitimate because it doesn't connect to the school, but I can see someone who went to UNC having a different opinion because their experience of being a fan is so different from mine. Obviously, similar issues come up in all fan contexts, but I think college sports has them in an especially interesting way.

The other time this comes up (this is big in North Carolina) is when people attend other schools with sporting fan bases, but remain fans of the team they were assigned at birth. I had high school friends who went to ECU or UNCW and hate the popular schools in the state (UNC, NC State, Duke) because people remain fans of those teams, even while attending a smaller Division I school that, in a sense, needs the fans more. Obviously, there's still no reason to judge other people's sports team preferences, but it can be frustrating to see people who, by all rights, should be on your side, but aren't

*I mean legitimate in the sense that other fans consider you to be a legitimate fan, I'm not personally judging anyone's legitimacy as a fan.
**Other than one uncle who is a Duke fan and with whom I am still on speaking terms because I am a saint.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 7:09 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


"The Fighting Irish belong with the Red Sox, the Yankees, Twilight, Taylor Swift, and any other property that is artificially relevant because the media wastes so much fucking time telling you how relevant they are."

Yankees definitely shouldn't be on that list. Sure, hate them all you want for the bungled A-Rod era and their massive budget, but 27 World Series wins don't lie!
posted by ReeMonster at 7:17 AM on November 29, 2012


The issue with the television contract is that, aside from this year, there hasn't been much reason to show Notre Dame football on television.

Having worked in television, I can tell you that they show Notre Dame on television for one reason and one reason only: people want to watch it. If they were really great and no one wanted to watch them, they wouldn't show them. If they suck and people do want to watch them they'll show them.
posted by Jahaza at 7:19 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


By way of example, I'm a Carolina fan. I didn't go to UNC, no one in family went to UNC...

What does UNC have to do with being a Gamecocks fan?

But I do agree with your larger point, that big-time college sports have a lot of fans with little or no connection to the school, for any number of reasons. Just like pro teams have many fans with little or no connection to the cities the teams play in (I have never been near Minnesota but like the Packers, both for their history and the fact that they are in a small town by pro football standards where the citizens are sort of owners of the team). And as Jerry Seinfeld pointed out, they are all just cheering for laundry, anyway.
posted by TedW at 7:40 AM on November 29, 2012


Lots of good thoughts here.

Lots of things wrong with *insert your team here*. Even more serious and systemic things wrong with football (from pop warner to pro) as a whole, up to and including health concerns, one conference dominating the others on a regular basis, extravagant coach pay packages, the system taking advantage of [black] kids, admissions/academic fraud, grade inflation at certain schools that is by no means restricted to athletes, referee strikes, team owners being generally shitty, and on and on and on.

All that said, as an UA alumnus and fan* (but not donor, they don't gets my moneys until the system gets fixed, which is basically never) I can't help but think that UA, or on the off chance that they melt down UGA, is going to win handily vs. a Notre Dame team on any but the most fluke-ish of days.

If Alabama makes it, obviously I'm rooting for Mayan Calendar Apocalypse.

I'd say you've got a better chance of not being disappointed than most Notre Dame fans.

*shameless friend plug that might help a mefite one day: If you're ever in Tuscaloosa for a game and need a place to park your car near the stadium, or just some general T-town tips/chat, send me a memail. Depending on the game I might be able to help ya out.
posted by RolandOfEld at 7:43 AM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


What Eyebrows McGee said. My Irish Catholic father has always been a Notre Dame fan because his father remembered a time when the Irish Catholics were dumped on and kept out -- even remembered the "No Irish need apply" signs in the window of shops that were hiring (not to mention issues with applying to college). And the success of Notre Dame football was one of the things that helped bring the Irish into the American mainstream. Or so I learned at my father's knee -- and despite all the many, many reservations any thoughtful person must have about the corruption and hypocrisy of college football in this country, I'll be cheering Notre Dame on in the title game, because, god damn it all to hell, I'm a Callahan.
posted by ariel_caliban at 7:48 AM on November 29, 2012 [5 favorites]


The sexual assault stories are horrifying and disgusting and should be a total indictment of the program.

They absolutely are horrifying and disgusting, and I certainly don't want to gloss over them. At the same time, I don't know that ND is especially any worse in this respect than any other school. Athletes sexually assaulted female students at the tiny liberal arts college I attended for undergrad, and my school did a lot to cover that up, too, because they felt they had a reputation to uphold. (The dean of women told my wife, when she was a student, that the men at our school "just don't do that sort of thing" and that therefore a sexual assault safety presentation was not necessary.) It's absolutely scummy, but it's not just at ND, and if you think it's not happening where you went to school, or at the school of your own favorite team, you are almost certainly mistaken.

I'm not saying that this makes it okay. It's absolutely not okay, regardless of where it takes place. I'm just saying that singling out one school is probably a real oversimplification of the sexual assault problems that colleges and athletics programs face.

And, like it or not and for better or for worse, it's not a defense attorney's job to show compassion for a plaintiff. It's just not. It's a defense attorney's job to provide the best possible defense for a client, and if that includes doggedly and, a bit, to my mind, unpleasantly persuading a potential plaintiff not to press charges in the first place, that is because justice in this country actually depends on him doing his job to the best of his abilities.

Are there big problems when social pressure is applied to ostracize a "troublemaking" victim? Absolutely there are, and I am not at all convinced that we handle this issue nearly well enough in the U.S. But defense attorneys should be some of the last people we should expect to be the change on this issue, not because they are bad people who don't care about sexual assault victims, but because of their professional obligations with respect to the defense of the accused.
posted by gauche at 7:56 AM on November 29, 2012


I should say that while I hate to see Alabama win another national title because I'm kind of sick of them, Alabama does pretty well according to my SEC ranking metric which is based on who I prefer in big rivalry games. Alabama beats Auburn because for years I thought Auburn was a private school and because "Roll Tide" is incredibly fun to say. If you forced me to cheer for an SEC team it would probably be Georgia because it would let me keep hating Georgia Tech, but Alabama would be in the running.

I was also reading this article on the S-E-C chant recently (the article is from a year ago) and it was interesting, although I continue to find rooting for a conference, which generally contains your most hated foes, to be a little weird.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 8:00 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Subway alums


In Arkansas, and not used in a derogatory manner, fans of the Razorbacks who never attended the university are sometimes referred to as "dirt road alumni." They're actually praised as one reason the Razorbacks are the de facto team supported in the state, discounting the minority of people who cheer on the Red Wolves.

I am already inclined by being a Razorback fan to cheer on whomever emerges from the SEC championship game against Notre Dame. I think a lot of antipathy toward the Fighting Irish comes from the belief, accurate or not, that the team is promoted and hyped way more than it should be based on its abilities. This year is an exception, but for many years, the Irish would appear in pre-season polls only to disappear as their legacy failed to keep up with on field success. They pretty much always had a reserve spot in the ranking, talked up as definitely going to be a contender, only to go up in flames....over and over.
posted by Atreides at 8:07 AM on November 29, 2012


Notre Dame also has a contingent of fans known as "Reversible Jacket Fans." These are Indiana residents (for the most part) that are rabid ND fans during football season and rabid IU fans during basketball season. The fact that both of those teams are #1 right now makes me very, very glad that I'm not living in Indiana.
posted by COD at 8:32 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


So much anger can't be healthy.

To be clear, Drew Magary does a terrific job of writing these articles. He does an entire series for the NFL each year; 2012 is available here and, if nothing else, read the Butthurt Awards to see which teams' fanbases are the most thin-skinned. Unfortunately for me, New England sports fans always rise to the bait (though I still think the Steelers' fans were the best) and confirm all the worst stereotypes about themselves.

I get the hate for Notre Dame as a team for casual fans and front-runners like the Yankees, Cowboys, etc. My only complaint is it's a hell of a thing to have managed, to be hated when you're good and still hated when you're bad, thanks to the enormous TV contract. I grew up in the '80s at the height of Lou Holtz, Tony Rice, Ricky Watters, Rocket Ismail, etc. so I at least got a taste of the good life before a decade plus in the wilderness with a couple of tease seasons just to make things more painful.

As I age and sports becomes less a life-or-death affair and just a fun diversion, I think Notre Dame would be about the last thing I'd give up on. I didn't go to the school, no one I'm related to did and I'm not even sure I have an ND grad in my immediate circle of friends, but like posters above, my passion for the school's success (especially in the face of haters), comes from my grandfather, who was lucky enough to grow up at a time when a schoolteacher could start the Pledge of Allegiance with, " . . . and you Papists say the end as well".* Sadly, I'll probably pass on the small-minded, paranoid nature of the fandom to any offspring I have. In spite of the success of Irish Catholics in this country, for some reason we're still always looking for the guy behind us with a brick, to wander into the party we weren't invited to and find everyone speaking ill of our "race". No idea why, but things like this (not so much the piece as the response, people thinking of it as an excuse to spew whatever vitriol they like) just re-enforces the feeling we're hoi polloi. There's a reason the mascot always has his dukes up.

In a wonderfully sad bit of irony, my grandfather grew up to be the cop who solved her rape & murder.
posted by yerfatma at 8:58 AM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


Rome is telling Kelly what plays to run Paawwwl.
posted by JPD at 9:01 AM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


yerfatma: "To be clear, Drew Magary does a terrific job of writing these articles. He does an entire series for the NFL each year; 2012 is available here and, if nothing else, read the Butthurt Awards to see which teams' fanbases are the most thin-skinned. Unfortunately for me, New England sports fans always rise to the bait (though I still think the Steelers' fans were the best) and confirm all the worst stereotypes about themselves."

This. As Ghidorah noted way back there, Magary is probably not someone most MeFites are familiar with. This kind of thing is his schtick. It's pretty funny most of the time, although I think he could probably do more interesting things.

I did like the beatdown the letter X got in this article
posted by Chrysostom at 9:19 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


I read this article 'cause a guy on local radio yesterday said it was hilarious. Turns out I'm not much of a football fan at all... I can enjoy watching an individual game just fine, but I've never felt the slightest urge to follow any given team in any given sport outside the Olympics.

Anyway. The haterade was cute. The sexual assault issue is horrifying (and sadly, unsurprising). Seems to me that the 90% grad rate for athletes is the real bright accomplishment here, and I'd love to see that become a bigger part of this narrative.

But I was a tiny bit (really, yes, only a tiny bit) sad at the Taylor Swift dis. I like her much better than I like football.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 9:20 AM on November 29, 2012


Duke still sucks.

I graduated from Boston College and so the only reason I can root for Notre Dame is by repeating to myself "N.D. stands for Not Duke."
posted by wenestvedt at 9:27 AM on November 29, 2012


The butthurt Notre Dame fans even show up on Metafilter!

Isn't this really a showing of the butthurt fans of everybody but Notre Dame?
posted by craven_morhead at 9:31 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


I am currently trying to figure out if the term butthurt is homophobic or has homophobic roots. The consensus I'm getting from my internet search results, mostly random forums, is something along the lines of "STFU you overly sensitive person" or worse. So I guess the real answer is to never underestimate the insensitivity of the internet.
posted by RolandOfEld at 9:40 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


In Alabama and the rest of the south, we often use the term "pickup truck alumni" to describe bandwagon types with no actual connection to the school. It's derogatory, for sure, but is meant to be applied to the Harvey Updykes of the world -- not all random nonalum fans with nontraditional ties to the school.

Roll Tide. (BA, '92)
posted by uberchet at 9:52 AM on November 29, 2012


There was an ESPN article recently where the writer mentioned that Harvey Updyke had called him from the psychiatric facility where he's undergoing testing to talk about the SEC Championship game. Honestly, it seemed really weird to me to take that call.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 9:57 AM on November 29, 2012


Now, Oregon-Kansas State? I definitely would have watched that game.

That would have been a match-up that caused severe anguish in my house.

Knight University is insufferable enough without a championship, but k-state victory would be tragic in a house with a Jayhawk quilt on the crib.
posted by madajb at 9:59 AM on November 29, 2012


Re: subway fans and pickup truck alumni... There's a big difference between non-alums who actually live near or have some sort of family connection to the school in question and those who just want to root for a winner. Because ND has the NBC contract, it's created a much larger nationwide bandwagon effect for people in the latter category, and that's more worthy of contempt in my book.
posted by tonycpsu at 10:00 AM on November 29, 2012


I'm somewhat curious if there's a term like that for UW-Madison Badgers fans who didn't go to the school. A lot of Badgers fans fall into this category, mainly because (as far as I know) it's the state's only Div-I football school.

Since going to their basketball rival (though Madison may not know it), I won't root for the Badgers, but I can't root against them in football, either. Someday may the mighty Panthers of Milwaukee vanquish the terrible Badgers basketball team though.
posted by drezdn at 10:09 AM on November 29, 2012


RolandOfEld, knowyourmeme thinks it's from spanking.
posted by Aizkolari at 10:10 AM on November 29, 2012


Because ND has the NBC contract, it's created a much larger nationwide bandwagon effect for people in the latter category, and that's more worthy of contempt in my book.

This is complete nonsense. The phrase "subway alumni" goes back to at least the early Thirties, before the first college football game had been broadcast on TV (1939), let alone before television contracts or most people had televisions.

Notre Dame has a television contract in the first place because of the wide fan support, not the other way around. Does it help them maintain it, sure, but it's not the primary cause.
posted by Jahaza at 10:10 AM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Yea, not that it matters in any sort of grand scheme of things but I have as much or more respect for a janitor or secretary that roots for the school they are happily employed at but didn't attend (or for their wives, children, friends who pickup on their contentment) than for people who are only fans because they like the pretty helmets, enjoyed the movie Rudy, or love the song Sweet Home Alabama. Heck I respect, and quite often enjoy the company of, the janitor-type fans more than a lot of the alumnus-for-three-generations type fans.

I think before I'd venture to say I have contempt for any group of fans there would have to be another motivating factor beyond "why they like the team in question". Any normal/common behavior trends would be high on that list.

However, I am completely ok with admitting that there is a likely correlation between the behavior of groups of fans and the reason said fans root for their team. I think that's the key difference that some people would do well to remember.

On preview: Thanks, Aizkolari.
posted by RolandOfEld at 10:13 AM on November 29, 2012


Because ND has the NBC contract, it's created a much larger nationwide bandwagon effect

Awfully generous of NBC to take such a risk on a little-known Midwestern school, wouldn't you say?
posted by yerfatma at 10:15 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


And yes, Notre Dame won most of the Army-Notre Dame games in the thirties... but often by thin margins:

1939/11/04 Army 0 - Notre Dame 14 L
1938/10/29 Army 7 - Notre Dame 19 L
1937/11/13 Army 0 - Notre Dame 7 L
1936/11/14 Army 6 - Notre Dame 20 L
1935/11/16 Army 6 - Notre Dame 6 T
1934/11/24 Army 6 - Notre Dame 12 L
1933/12/02 Army 12 - Notre Dame 13 L
1932/11/26 Army 0 - Notre Dame 21 L
1931/11/28 Army 12 - Notre Dame 0 W
1930/11/29 Army 6 - Notre Dame 7 L

There was a famous Army blowout in 1944.

Here's a nice historical overview of the early 20th century Notre Dame West Point rivalry.
posted by Jahaza at 10:17 AM on November 29, 2012


RolandOfEld, knowyourmeme thinks it's from spanking.
posted by Aizkolari


It always struck me as a way of teasing people for being angry about being sexually assaulted. I'd be happy if it had some other meaning, 'cause I've never been comfortable with the term for just that reason. But "spanking" seems like an awfully PG explanation to me. :/
posted by scaryblackdeath at 10:17 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Jahaza: " Notre Dame has a television contract in the first place because of the wide fan support, not the other way around. Does it help them maintain it, sure, but it's not the primary cause."

I didn't say that on the seventh day, NBC created the Notre Dame fair-weather bandwagon fan base. What I'm saying is the national TV contract extends the reach of the school beyond that which would exist without the contract. This is also how you get fair-weather Braves and Cubs fans around the country because of the TBS/WGN superstations. I didn't think this would be a controversial statement, but obviously you read something else into my comment.
posted by tonycpsu at 10:19 AM on November 29, 2012


It always struck me as a way of teasing people for being angry about being sexually assaulted.

I could post a link to a story where a fraternity, their pledges, and metal chairs heated with a blowtorch all combine to make a perfect usage for the word but I'll leave that for you to google and find out about if you would like to know more about the school(s) it occurred in. *cough* *cough*
posted by RolandOfEld at 10:23 AM on November 29, 2012


(And, yes, I recognize the irony of "fair weather Cubs fans", but my college roommate actually was one -- "fair weather" for a Cubs fan is being above 0.500 any time after May.)
posted by tonycpsu at 10:23 AM on November 29, 2012


Bulgaroktonos: Now, Oregon-Kansas State? I definitely would have watched that game.
madajb: That would have been a match-up that caused severe anguish in my house.

Unless KSU loses to Texas on Saturday, they are almost guaranteed to play Oregon in the Fiesta Bowl, according to every BCS bowl projection I've read. I'm looking forward to it, especially since KSU chickened out of a scheduled game with Oregon this year (leading to everyone saying the Ducks has a cupcake schedule.) You can run, but you can't hide!
posted by msalt at 10:25 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I didn't say that on the seventh day, NBC created the Notre Dame fair-weather bandwagon fan base. What I'm saying is the national TV contract extends the reach of the school beyond that which would exist without the contract.

Yes.

This is also how you get fair-weather Braves and Cubs fans around the country because of the TBS/WGN superstations.

No. The Braves became a national force because of TBS. Notre Dame is on NBC because they were a national force since before there were television broadcasts.
posted by Jahaza at 10:26 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I can't prove the counterfactual that, absent the contract, Notre Dame slips into oblivion. What I can say is that I've personally known ND fans with no connection to the school who just follow them because they're always on national TV, and that I find that more contemptible than the kid who follows the hometown team or his dad's college team or whatever.
posted by tonycpsu at 10:30 AM on November 29, 2012


Notre Dame is the only team with a connection to a substantial nationwide constituency (25% of the US is or was Catholic.) They will always be popular and always be on TV, so get used to it. (And consider the alternatives: Army, Navy and Brigham Young.)
posted by msalt at 10:37 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Notre Dame is too chickenshit to join a real conference and relinquish its 37 scheduled games against Air Force every year. So it's worked out this bizarre fuck-buddy relationship with the ACC


To be clear, Drew Magary does a terrific job of writing these articles.

To be clear, he writes tired, played-out drivel that reads like it was written by a 14-year-old with a head full of gin who thinks it's kewl to swear about as much as possible.
posted by ambient2 at 10:57 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Unless KSU loses to Texas on Saturday, they are almost guaranteed to play Oregon in the Fiesta Bowl, according to every BCS bowl projection I've read.

Hook 'em, Horns!
posted by madajb at 10:59 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


"those who just want to root for a winner. Because ND has the NBC contract, it's created a much larger nationwide bandwagon effect for people in the latter category, and that's more worthy of contempt in my book."

But ... why is this contemptible? Why do people hold such contempt for someone with a casual interest in, say, basketball, who starts paying attention when the Bulls start making a run, and get excited about seeing a sport well-played? Is it contemptible that I started watching the rowing during the Olympics, which I know nothing about, and started pulling for a team with a good backstory who were rowing like crazy, and then was excited when they won?

I mean, you want people to cheer for your team LESS because they don't cheer for it The Right Way or Often Enough? As a fan of Notre Dame and the Cubs, there are loads of fair weather fans about, but I'm always just happy that we're having a good year and that other people are taking an interest in a team that I like.

I've spent a lot of time around sportswriters, I know that exclusion-policing The Wrong Kind of Fans is a thing that a lot of sportsfans do, but really? Contempt? Someone who casually enjoys watching a particular team win, or gets engaged in a good sports story (which, really, sports media is there to create and sell the narrative), they're worth CONTEMPT? That seems really extreme.

Fair-weather fans and subway alumni alike, you can ride on my bandwagon. We'll have beer.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:39 AM on November 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


ND fans with no connection to the school who just follow them because they're always on national TV

Yeah, I can see where the Bob Davie/ Ty Willingham/ Charlie Weis eras would have sucked casual fans into wasting their Saturdays watching football.
That said, Ty got screwed by the school.
posted by yerfatma at 12:01 PM on November 29, 2012


To be clear, he writes tired, played-out drivel that reads like it was written by a 14-year-old with a head full of gin who thinks it's kewl to swear about as much as possible.

Like I said, he does a terrific job of it. To be clearer, I meant "trolling fanbases". Unless you think 3,000 word cogent arguments would do a better job.
posted by yerfatma at 12:02 PM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm a lifelong Duck who lives deep in SEC territory and who wouldn't cheer for the Dawgs if it were UGA vs. Auburn for KINGS OF FOOTBALL FOREVER.

Kind of nice to be done with football this early, actually.
posted by catlet at 12:10 PM on November 29, 2012


Eyebrows McGee: "But ... why is this contemptible? "

This is a good question, and I don't think my answer will be satisfactory, but here it goes.

Being a passionate fan of a sports franchise is an exercise in the suspension of disbelief. I don't know if you've seen the beer commercials where the fans do some goofy ritual for a field goal kick and the kick goes through, and it says "it's only dumb if it doesn't work." That's not exactly what I'm talking about, but it's a good approximation of how silly sports fans get in pursuit of a win for their team.

This extends beyond the realm of superstition, too. For the most part, we all root for the laundry, not the players. We like to think our teams have "better guys" than the other team, but then our better guys leave or get traded, so now those guys are assholes and the new guys are the "better guys." We also try to foster all of these "rivalries" between teams. Sometimes it's based on geography, or something bad that happened between the teams 30 years ago, or whatever -- but it's all bunk.

Sports is unscripted, so there are no inherently good or bad teams. Still, we want story lines to create rooting interests. Sometimes these are organic and based on real world events (Art Modell moves the Colts out of Baltimore, George Steinbrenner buys himself a few championships, Buddy Ryan puts a bounty on the Dallas field goal kicker's head) but sometimes they're just things we create or dramatize for the purposes of a more entertaining experience. I've participated in many "Dallas Sucks!" chants as an Eagles fan, but do I really hate the city or the guys on the team? Not really. I dislike Jimmy Johnson and Michael Irvin, but I've grown to like Troy Aikman as an announcer, and would have loved him on my team after Randall Cunningham left. So it's mostly just a big game of self-deception.

So, anyway, in a world where so many fans are deluding themselves into thinking that there are inherently good and evil teams to root for and against, I think it's lame to go pick a team that's winning all the time unless you have a connection to the team. If you're just a casual fan without any real rooting interest and you just liked to watch Jordan and Pippen run the floor, that's fine. But if you become a passionate fan of a single team based purely on how good it feels to follow a winner, you're cheating yourself, because the wins don't mean as much as they do when you pay your dues. Picking a team and sticking with them through thick and thin is a more rewarding experience, IMHO.
posted by tonycpsu at 12:11 PM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


ambient2: "To be clear, he writes tired, played-out drivel that reads like it was written by a 14-year-old with a head full of gin who thinks it's kewl to swear about as much as possible."

Yeah, take THAT, you loser Arthur C. Clarke Award nominee!
posted by Chrysostom at 12:14 PM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


//"But ... why is this contemptible? "//

Also, being a fan is also being part of a tribe. And if it not Notre Dame or the Yankees, it is a somewhat exclusive tribe, usually with many members superficially connected by geography, where they went to school, etc. Nobody wants their tribe over run by a outsiders who have no connection to the tribe, other than the tribe's idol was the in thing this year.

Prior to 2004, running into somebody with a Red Sox hat on meant there was a very good chance they had some connection to New England, and we'd have that in common. After 2004, odds were better the hat was pink, and the wearer had no connection to New England, and in fact probably could barely name more than 2 or 3 players on the team. After the last couple of seasons I'm sort of relieved that the pink hat fans have moved on to a new flavor of the day.

Rational? Not at all. But then people, especially in groups, rarely are.
posted by COD at 12:21 PM on November 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


A lot of this reminds me of the Fake Geek Girl arguments, just with tailgating instead of conventions.
posted by rewil at 12:41 PM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


i don't really follow sports much, but i am partial to the michigan state spartans because both my parents went to msu and i was born in lansing

2nd comes michigan just because i'm from michigan

3rd comes notre dame because of my irish catholic background - (and i live little more than an hour away, so ...)

i'm not particular about anyone or anything else except that ohio state comes dead last

of course
posted by pyramid termite at 12:45 PM on November 29, 2012


Heh, pyramid termite, your teams crack me up.

MSU, UMich, and ND form a terrible triangle of football grudges in the upper Midwest. Those teams and fanbases all hate each other. Not to say you can't like all three, but it would be tough to do so in public.

So it's especially funny to me that, having skillfully navigated this seemingly impossible feat of tiered multiple loyalty, you then note that Ohio State would, of course, have to be your least favorite team.
posted by gauche at 1:01 PM on November 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


Notre Dame is the only team with a connection to a substantial nationwide constituency (25% of the US is or was Catholic.)

Again, like Boston College...though the last few years we would prefer to talk about hockey or basketball. Or anything besides football, thankyouverymuch. :7(
posted by wenestvedt at 1:18 PM on November 29, 2012


This guy's rant is so over-the-top that I doubt its sincerity.
posted by Rashomon at 1:39 PM on November 29, 2012


The type of bandwagon fan that is lame is the type that switches loyalty based on winning. I only pay attention to the Sixers when they are good, but it's not like I'm cheering on the Celtics instead when I'm tuned out. Even then, if someone wants to switch teams like that the only time I'm gonna get on them is if they try and act like they never left. If a team with a national following keeps it up through momentum and gains new fans, so what? That people like the team they can watch isn't that shocking.

There is a certain value in being with a team in the bad times that shows you are more authentic and more dedicated and when the good times come you earned them in a way. I'm not ashamed to admit the Eagles are the only team I'm like that with. Sports is a hobby and it takes up a lot of time, you can't be a die hard with everything.
posted by Drinky Die at 2:45 PM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


MSU, UMich, and ND form a terrible triangle of football grudges in the upper Midwest. Those teams and fanbases all hate each other. Not to say you can't like all three, but it would be tough to do so in public.

Someone I worked with once told me that they liked the Bengals, the Browns, and the Ravens. Some people care about these things and some people just don't. I don't understand the latter group, but they exist.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 3:11 PM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm an Army fan (so painful), and now I have to choose between cheering for a team from the SEC, which makes sense since I'm from the South, or Notre Dame, which might make sense because I'm an Irish Catholic, albeit not a good one.
posted by A Bad Catholic at 4:12 PM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


me: Notre Dame is the only team with a connection to a substantial nationwide constituency (25% of the US is or was Catholic.)
wenestvedt: Again, like Boston College...

Except nobody knows that, so no big TV ratings. Hell, I went to 12 years of Catholic school out west and didn't know BC was Catholic until I went to college in Boston.
posted by msalt at 6:26 PM on November 29, 2012


The article was funny right up to the Jimmy Clausen part and then it gets mean. The NBC TV deals that followed in the wake of the Cotton Bowl Classics was a travesty that I shant soon forget.
posted by vozworth at 6:47 PM on November 29, 2012


pyramid termite, you are disloyal and must be purged. As a real Michigan State fan (even though they wouldn't give me enough aid to go there as an in-state student, while Indiana was willing to offer me a full-ride as an out of state student), screw Michigan and fuck ND. I won't even dignify Ohio State with a transgressive act.

Among Michigan's crimes? Ann Arbor is a really awesome place, except for the whole university being there.
posted by Ghidorah at 8:26 PM on November 29, 2012


I graduated from ND in '03. In my 4 years there, we had 3 head football coaches. Definitely the nadir of the program.

ND has become so used to nationwide haterade that, in some ways, the system has become self-fulfilling; the sense of smug superiority from ND fans rekindles the hate. The traditions, as a monolith, can seem quite abrasive, but in my experience, I never knew an ND student or alum who bore actual hate for the teams we play. Sure, we want to win every game, who doesn't?

I loved going to the BC/ND hockey games the Friday night before the next day's football game. I love the tradition of playing the Service Academies and the long-time, long-distance ND/USC rivalry. Every school & every athletic program has its issues, but I'm fine with the way that everyone, even the haters, holds ND to a higher standard. Academics, athletics, and service at Notre Dame sometimes appears to be focused on being better than everyone else, but in my experience, both as a student and an athlete, it is less about being better than others and more about reaching personal bests and beyond.
posted by sciurus at 8:46 AM on November 30, 2012


I have never been near Minnesota but like the Packers,

Obviously!
posted by the young rope-rider at 11:33 AM on December 1, 2012


I have never been near Minnesota but like the Packers,

Obviously!


Gadzooks! Is there some way I can blame that on autocorrect? Or maybe the whole Brett Favre thing confused me. Anyway, I'm off to MeTa to ask for a five-day edit window.
posted by TedW at 12:18 PM on December 1, 2012 [2 favorites]


Ha, it's not really a big deal, I just know a lot of rabid Minnesota fans who would die if they read that. In fact, I'm going to steal it and troll them with it.
posted by the young rope-rider at 12:27 PM on December 1, 2012 [1 favorite]


Also, the best thing about Brett Farve was hearing Vikings fans twist themselves into convulsions when their love of the Vikings collided with their hate for Farve.
posted by the young rope-rider at 12:29 PM on December 1, 2012


Can Notre Dame stop the run?
posted by drezdn at 5:09 PM on December 1, 2012


Yes.
posted by Drinky Die at 5:18 PM on December 1, 2012


Not when facing Alabama's front line, I wager.
posted by msalt at 5:23 PM on December 1, 2012 [4 favorites]


As rabid an Alabama fan as I am, I don't wager on the games very often, maybe once in the last 4 years or so have I put money on a game.

I just put some money on UA over the Irish, I even gave the other guy the 7 points he asked for.

That's how strongly I feel that they can't stop our run. TJ (a friend's nephew, he has a really level head and is going to continue be so fun to watch) and Lacy are going to dominate.
posted by RolandOfEld at 12:51 PM on December 4, 2012


That's how strongly I feel that they can't stop our run.

I hadn't seen an Alabama game until the SEC Championship and there were a couple times where I could have sworn that the entire Georgia defensive front was eaten whole by Alabama offensive linemen.

What I'm saying is that I like your chances to get your money.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 1:00 PM on December 4, 2012


Alabama size and experience figures:

The five starters average 6 feet, 5.2 inches and 316.4 pounds. By comparison, Stack.com reported the average offensive lineman at the 2011 NFL combine stood 6-4 and weighed 311.5 pounds.*

and

The four who return have combined to start 95 games while the other seven offensive positions have a collective 42 starts.*

Anyone know how this stacks up to the Irish, just for the sake of comparison? I couldn't find the same stats for their line right off the bat.

What I'm saying is that I like your chances to get your money.

I hope so, I think we'll dominate them on the special teams side as well. If Kirby can just keep them in check when they get the ball we'll be 100% fine. Like a lot of our games we may not win the 1st, or even the 2nd, quarter but that offensive line wears down most defenses by the 3rd and 4th quarters.

*This is a bit dated, but not too much.
posted by RolandOfEld at 1:49 PM on December 4, 2012


Whatever you do, Bama, if ND's trying to put up a goal line stand, don't run it inside. Option sweep, a little screen, fade to the corner -- anything but a run up the middle. Especially at the end of the game.
posted by msalt at 8:16 PM on December 4, 2012


I am currently trying to figure out if the term butthurt is homophobic or has homophobic roots. The consensus I'm getting from my internet search results, mostly random forums, is something along the lines of "STFU you overly sensitive person" or worse. So I guess the real answer is to never underestimate the insensitivity of the internet.

On ‘Butthurt’

posted by homunculus at 10:29 AM on December 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


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