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Entries in Lou Holtz (2)


Can Rece Davis Do A Lou Holtz Impersonation?

One Great Season

After the Capital One Cup announcement Wednesday, the advisory board members were nice enough to make themselves available for one-on-one interviews. Thank goodness for that, because otherwise I'd never have learned that ESPN host Rece Davis can do a decent Lou Holtz impression.

Davis, who seemed a quite likable fellow, doesn't stay with the impression too long, but shared some other tidbits about Dr. Lou's game-day footwear and his preferred smoking apparatus.


When Notre Dame Is Good, So Is College Football

One Great Season

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Not long after many of my peers jumped on the Notre Dame bandwagon in the late 1980s, and Irish haters accused us of being fairweather fans, I jumped off the wagon and chose Ohio State as my favorite squad.

YOUR THOUGHTS: Why Do So Many People Hate Notre Dame?

Until then, I felt like I had a legitimate reason to support the Golden Domers. Ever since I was old enough to talk trash and stretch truths, many of my friends were aware that my dad had played at Notre Dame. Of course I left out the fact that he didn't step on the field for legendary coach Frank Leahy, and ultimately transferred to Marquette after two seasons. Yes, Marquette had varsity tackle football back in the day.

But once I enjoyed a Notre Dame national championship after the 1988 season, and watched the Irish get robbed of another one a year or two later on the phantom clip call during a Rocket Ismail punt return for a late touchdown against Colorado, I noticed all my friends had suddenly become Irish fans.

And then the school and NBC agreed on what was then a revolutionary television contract, a pact that has stayed intact now for nearly 20 years. No single team in any sport at any level enjoys such coverage at the national network level. To me, that just felt far too corporate for 1991. If I was to continue following Notre Dame football, I'd end up needing many showers.

But then the Irish football program fell back toward mediocrity, and suddenly for many it was no longer a guilty pleasure to enjoy Notre Dame football again. Only it was difficult to do so after Lou Holtz left.

Again, having thrown my full support behind Ohio State football, I cheered for the Buckeyes as they swept a home-and-home series against the Irish in the mid-1990s. I felt a little guilty, just a few years after my dad's death, rooting against Notre Dame, but if I recall, he took me to more Ohio State games as a kid than Notre Dame games, so it made sense for this Ohio native to follow the Bucks, right?


Anyway, these days, I have very little interest in Notre Dame football, but it's hard to discount the history and the tradition here in South Bend. Few schools can match it. And I hope to capture some of it in my remaining days here on this tour.

The recent Brady Quinn teams sure were fun to watch, especially when the 2005 edition lost to Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl.

But I will say that a good team in South Bend is good for the sport. Those old ghosts that used to affect games in such a way that visiting teams suspected lopsided officiating always make for good conversation.

I never know why people hate players or teams or coaches so fiercely, but Notre Dame football always has had plenty of critics, long in the fan arena and perhaps the press box, and of course in more recent times the mostly faceless blogosphere. But once people do away with the vitriol and allow themselves to have an objective conversation, I think they'll agree that a good Notre Dame team only makes a college football season even more exciting and intriguing.