Welcome to the last regular season IBG of 2010. It has been a wild ride this year, but as of right now, I think the future looks to be in pretty good shape.
With that intro out of the way, this weeks IBG is brought to us by OC Domer who lives amongst the enemy on the daily, and has some strange eating habits.
Let's IBG this thang...
1. Notre Dame played perhaps its best game of the year in a win over the Utah Utes two weeks ago. Utah remains ranked at #23 in the Associated Press poll. Notre Dame likewise took Michigan State (AP #11) to overtime before losing on a fake field goal. Therefore the Irish should have no trouble with this unranked Trojan squad. Agree or disagree? Show your work.
Let's not get carried away here. It's not that I don't think Notre Dame is a bit better than their 6-5 record would lead us to believe... but this is still $C. Saying that the Irish will have, "no trouble" with any team that has beaten them for 8 years straight (especially U$C), is something that hasn't even crossed my mind.
The big question, is if U$C has packed it in and quit. They certainly looked like they did against Oregon State, and with no bowl game in the picture, you have to wonder about that type of mindset getting put on auto-pilot. My guess is that Kiffincakes will use all the tricks in his bag of snake-oil to get his team mentally ready for this rivalry game.
2. It is almost time for the OC Domer Player of the Year to be named. This award is intended to recognize the Notre Dame football player or players who played the best when it mattered the most. Suffice it to say that the primary criterion is a consistently high level of play, with significant bonus points awarded for exceeding expectations. Injuries have taken many of the pre-season favorites for this prestigious award out of the running. Who is your nominee for this award, and why?
I really, really want to put David Ruffer here, but my common sense won't let me. So, I can only go for the logical choice of... Manti Te'o. Te'o has been a solid presence game in and game out for the Irish. There are times where Te'o may miss a tackle or two, but only because he is too god damn fast and has such good instincts, that he actually over pursues the play. This usually happens early in the game, and he settles down in the 2nd quarter and really starts hammering the opponent. He hits, HARD. Like a Pacific Ocean Typhoon, Manti Te'o is out to destroy you and your ancestors.
3. With a delicate flavor similar to beef, though slightly sweeter than other meats, horse meat can be used to replace beef, pork, mutton, and any other meat in virtually any recipe, though most aficionados prefer it in marinated or spicy dishes. Nutritionally, horse meat has around 40 percent fewer calories than the leanest beef, while supplying 50 percent more protein and as much as 30 percent more iron; and horse fat is considered an excellent health-conscious deep-frying alternative, especially for delicately-flavored foods that are easily overpowered by heavier oils. What is your favorite horse meat recipe?
I found this question offensive, until I watched Seabiscuit and Secretariat- then I flew out to LA, kidnapped Tommy Trojan and Traveler and brought them to Ohio. I made Tommy watch as I gutted his horse and made 800 kabobs out of him. The terror made it that much more delicious.
4. Do you miss Pat Haden, who left the Notre Dame television broadcasts to become athletic director at USC?
Fuck no. Is that clear enough? I actually never thought Haden was all that bad, but now I know that kind of mindset was only because of the pure evil awfulness of Tom Hammond. With Mike Mayock, NBC has a "football" guy. A guy that is constantly breaking down players and plays during the game, and not making the 4 hour event an infomercial for whatever human-interest piece he is pushing. Oh my god, we are talking about a tremendous difference for the better with the change.
Unfortunately, we are still stuck with Hammond. If NBC can find a replacement that is as much of a change as the Haden for Mayock move was, we are in serious business. Until then, hold on to your ice skates and your sequin jumpsuits.
5. USC is the Notre Dame rival I love to hate. What Notre Dame rival do you most despise, and why?
Right about here, domer.mq of Her Loyal Sons is going to drop a lecture about how Notre Dame only has one rival, and U$C is that school. While I agree that U$C is the top dog, I have to say that because of the uniqueness of the University and its football program, I can imagine that there are several different answers available to this answer depending upon ones own personal feelings.
With that said:
I fucking hate U$C. I hate them. It's not the kind of "Burn in hell" hate that I have for Michigan (I have a little more respect for the Condoms), but it's close. That fucking song, that god-damn horse, their loin-cloth wearing mascot, and their fair-weather fanbase. The only good thing about that school are the song-girls, and even that pisses me off (more of a jealousy thing).
6. Reggie Bush got a car, his parents a house. Cam Newton's Dad was looking for $180,000 in straight cash homey. Can Notre Dame compete for athletic recruits in this environment? Or do you believe these incidents are the exceptions to an otherwise clean recruiting landscape?
I have a headache. I get them after some really hard laughs. I had those hard laughs after I read the words, "clean recruiting landscape." It is a dirty, dirty world out there, but it isn't the players getting paid, or other such things. It's what has happened to the recruiting process itself. These high school juniors and seniors are now, more than ever, massive celebrities within the college football world which, itself, gets bigger and bigger every year.
The thing about Notre Dame, is that I think they can compete against any school with the recruits that they offer, and contrary to popular belief- Notre Dame can offer a very long list of 4 and 5 star players. Go and look at the offer lists from the Irish over the past 5+ years. They are littered with All-Americans and draft picks.
All the Irish have to do id to keep working hard at building relationships with the schools, coaches and the players themselves. That, and win on a consistent basis against prime competition. That shouldn't be so hard, should it. I know, we will start doing it... NOW.
This is where I was going to post a video from a reader, after he emailed me, and asked me to do so... but it looks like he also emailed Her Loyal Sons, and they posted it. I'm guessing that HLS was probably his first choice anyways. Instead, I am going to give a sobering reminder about the last time we were pumped up heading out to LA after beating Army, while wearing the green jerseys. (Do you think we could get Oldie to come out of retirement if the Irish win?)