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What a season, what a team, what a journey, what a satisfying joy it has been to witness the last 13 weeks. Everything that can be said and written about this season has already been written and said. This has been one for the ages. One we will all be talking about decades from now. I believe each of us have shared every emotion possible witnessing it: surprise, angst, euphoria, panic, and rapture. What the last 13 weeks did, in essence, was set the banquet table. A table that has SO much now on it to partake of, it's almost tempting fate to gaze upon it. What a 13th win would bring to so many is worth a brief glimpse to ponder.
Forget about needing it to validate relevance for a team, a coach, or a program. The last 12 games have already accomplished that. Notre Dame is college football, and the dawn is breaking on yet another of it's golden eras. The last of which ended some 19 years ago. Anyone with any college football common sense can see that this is no "lightning in a bottle" 2005 or "smoke and mirrors" 2002 campaigns. No, 2012 has set up for the long haul a sustained success by a team full of toughness & strength led by coaches of tactics & strategy. The identity has been forged, and the recruiting by this staff shows the country it will have staying power.
Yes, the tangible spoils of winning a 13th game are glorious and grand. The aforementioned crystal football that signifies to all who see it that you were greater than anyone else that year. If you've been inside the Gug, you already know the one that rests there from 1988 has room to slide over for a friend. The 13th win would bring a 13th ring to a jewelry case that even Tiffany would envy. And to think of the space Hammes (and Pimpi) will need to clear it's floor for all of it's new merchandise that we will need to help them move in celebration.
For it's coach, what a 13th win would mean. Brian Kelly is 60 minutes away from becoming legend. At a school where you are measured by nothing more than National Championships, he is a mere 4 quarters away from iconic status. He is one win away from a becoming immortalized with a Jerry McKenna statue at the South Gate of Notre Dame Stadium. He is that close to forever joining the club of Rockne, Leahy, Parseghian, Devine and Holtz- the greatest pantheon of coaches at the greatest school in the history of college football.
All of that and more. More tangible rewards than any of us can fathom are set on that banquet table of January 7th, 2013. And if that were all there was, it would be satisfying and it would be enough. But what entices me, what excites me the most about that table are the spoils you cannot see. The rewards and benefits that cannot be measured...only felt.
What a 13th win would bring that is the most desired by men and women here about my age is the opportunity that, if we are honest, each of us wondered over the last 19 years if we would every have again. For most of us remember what it was like to share those spoils, the feeling of not only playing like a champion, but being a national champion with our Dad's and Grandparents and loved ones. But deep down doubted if we would ever hire an athletic director with the vision to hire a coach who could recruit & develop the talent it takes like Corrigan and Holtz again.
You see, I am just a little selfish. I know I have more days behind me than I have ahead of me. For the reason I want to see Notre Dame win it's13th game isn't because the Gug needs another crystal football, or another diamond ring for a case, or another statue for a stadium. I want this badly because there is another generation of young men and women who love this school and this football program that have NEVER, IN THEIR LIFE known the intangible feeling inside your heart and soul to experience being on top. I've never experienced that with my wife, my son and my daughter. I want them to have what I had in 1977 & 1988, to feel what I felt then. To be able to pass along to their kids what I am passing along and sharing with mine. This university has always been about immeasurables, a spirit that never says die, a city on a hill that cannot be hidden. And a 13th win renews it all for another generation to follow.
Here's to that 13th win...here is to the Once and Future King...Notre Dame.
This post was edited by simm on 11/27/2012 at 1:49 PM
My luck w/the Irish 18-6...GO IRISH!!!
Very well stated, Simm, and the front-runner for POTW.
I had already reveled in national titles in 1973, 1977 and 1988, but over the past decade I felt like the proverbial beauty queen in her 20s who was now wrinkled and now boring everyone about how "in my time..." Or the 50-year-old guy who is having problems in his personal life but still wears his high school monogram jacket to recapture his identity that at one time he was the star quarterback of his team.
ND football in large part is about passing on the legacy from generation to generation knowing what it is to reach the summit. There was the Rockne generation in the 20s, the Leahy in the 40s, the Parsegian-Devine 17 year stretch through the 60s and 70s, and the Lou Holtz stretch from 1988-93.
We've almost lost a generation there ... but it seems to be coming back.
Great, Simm +1
First time POTW December 24th, 2012
We all have trudged through these past 19 years and it is such a pleasure to be experiencing this again. Words can't describe it. No matter what the outcome of the game, it has been a season we'll always remember.
And I believe we win that 13th and take hold of the crystal football.
Great post Simm.
POTW 11/9 to 11/15/2010
Strong, Simm. Very strong. I share that demographic with you and Lou, and then you can add a few years. There was a time, not too far back, when it was debatable whether I'd be adding those few years, and one of the second tier regrets was the possibility of never seeing another NC come Notre Dame's way. Even when that corner was turned and the window broadened, doubts still remained about seeing that NC. Well, it's within our grasp. And even if it eludes us this year, I think we all realize that it will be a tangible goal for years to come, and not just a faded memory of a dream many had claimed was no longer attainable.
I may not be pretty, but I'm fast.....
POTW 1/31/11 - 2/6/11
As Lou S. mentioned, POTW. Great stuff, Simm.
11-Time POTW / Co-Founder, Gringo Mafia
Really strong effort Simm. Nice work my friend!!!!! The part about having more years behind you than in front of you got me, because I'm guessing I'm in the boat with you on that one, but I never thought of it that way!
5-Time POTW Winner, 4 time at BGI and 1 at 24/7
CMC Quote Master and Director of Football Related Discussions
5 Time POTW & 2 Time WPOTW Winner
First time POTW for 4/18/2011-4/24/2011.
Strong post. Army strong
“This is that time when you say winning’s a choice.“
5 Time POTW--Gringo Mafia Director of Guerrilla Warfare
ND hasn't won a championship in my lifetime. Win or lose, it's been a unforgettable season.
Keeper of all Somogyi secrets and swell quotes.
3 time POTW, member since 2006, MLWTI: 4-3
Keeper of the Count to Resurrection II: the Kelly Era begins - -
POTW: June 2010 & August 2011 - -
member since 2004
"Strap on" is "No parts" spelled backwards...coincidence--- I think not!
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