Irish Top Wolverines and Face the CriticsÕ Disregard
We watched highlights, rewound the TiVo to make sure we saw it correctly, pumped fists, call friends and family screaming “did you see that?” and then gave a final round of high fives as the final seconds ticked away. After a traumatic, horribly embarrassing loss to the Michigan Wolverines last year, Notre Dame beat them on Saturday with a score of 35 – 17.
Now, it wasn’t a perfect game. It hardly ever is with Notre Dame football; at least it hasn’t been in recent years. There were mistakes, there were errors, there were mishaps. That’s bound to happen with my Irish. But the Wolverines made more – even fumbling several kickoffs and punts that the Irish capitalized on with either recoveries or tackles giving Michigan poor field position.
The biggest story of the game was, without a doubt, Coach Weiss being knocked off his feet as one of his players was run off the field and into the sidelines. Watching the replay of the injury, you just knew that something had gone terribly wrong. Weiss coached the rest of the first half on crunches in obvious pain, at times being physically supported by his coaching staff.
At halftime, he was driven off the field and the medical crew attended to him, taking MRIs in the locker room. The tests confirmed that Coach Weiss did, in fact, tear both his ACL and MCL in the collision – an injury identical to Tom Brady’s of the New England Patriots (who Weiss used to coach as a part of the Patriots staff prior to joining Notre Dame).
So the Irish have started the season 2 – 0. No, the wins haven’t been stellar, nor have they been what I would call “pretty.” But they’re wins. And if other teams can coast through the year playing teams that are physically half their size, reach the championship game, be embarrassed, and then listen to their fans say “I don’t know what happened,” and “If they had showed up to play, it would have been a good game” then I can be pretty proud of the Irish.
Once again, the critics have reared their heads saying that the Irish were handed the win due to the fact that Michigan had 6 turnovers. The Irish had four the week prior and still managed to win, by the way. And the more I hear that two wins don’t demand respect, I just shake my head. Clearly, it’s going to be one of those years.
Sure, worship those team with impressive wins over teams that pretty much don’t amount to anything instead. Spend your time talking about one team until that one team’s star player gets injured and suddenly the season goes downhill. Give the Heisman to a kid who’s backed up by a behemoth of an offensive line and don’t give it to the kid who had more comeback wins in his career than any of you can count. Go for it. Cause we’re not bitter. We’re ready for the return to glory. The question is, are you? It might not be this year. We’re only catching glimpses here and there of what is to come.
A bad season doesn’t destroy a truly resilient program. More often than not, they bounce back and they do it with fire. Just watch. It’ll happen. Because Notre Dame will rise again.
by Angela Moore
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