How I Would Fix Notre Dame Football

30 11 2008

I wrote this up quickly in response to the debotchery that was last night’s ND-USC game, and in response to Pat Forde’s article here: http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/columns/story?columnist=forde_pat&id=3734499&sportCat=ncf

This isn’t everything. A lot more needs to be done, but these are things that I think are essential. Let’s be honest, though. It’s not in the best situation right now. I would say worse, but I honestly don’t think it’s completely hopeless. But something needs to be done. Here are a few thoughts that I have:

I. Don’t fire Charlie

I’ve waivered on this decision a lot. Sometimes I think he needs to go, but other times I think he needs to stay. The enormous pressure over Notre Dame is overwhelming him. No, the team has been crappy these past two years. Really crappy. If Charlie goes, who is going to replace him? What coach will want to come to South Bend right now? There’s too much pressure to succeed in a short amount of time. Any other school in the nation has less pressure. Literally.

II. Learn how to win

So many times, ND just can’t seem to get a game together. I think this is due to the fact that they aren’t confident. When Quinn was around, they had that confidence. They knew that they were going to come in and take care of business. Since then, they have been really unsure of themselves. I’ve felt it as a fan, and I know that they felt it as players. I think they just need to get over it and go out there and clobber the hell out of someone. If they can get a nice string of games together, or beat someone like USC, then they’ll be back soon enough. They can’t lose games like that one against Pitt anymore. That one just ruined any sort of confidence they had.

III. Lower the academic standards

The academic standards as Notre Dame are extraordinarily high. This may have been alright in the past, but now, these standards are hurting our recruiting. Kids that are good players but not necessarily 4.0 students won’t go because they won’t be accepted. In other words, by lowering their standards they allow the most talented athletes the opportunity to play at Notre Dame that might not be the smartest kid on the block.

IV. Join a conference

This is a big one, in that it’s something that would have huge implications. We would lose our national television coverage for all home games on NBC. We would have to share any money we would make when we go to bowl games. However, overall the move would be good. It would give us actual bowl tie-ins. We would have the benefit of playing a conference schedule. If we were to join a conference, it would have to be the Big Ten, hands down. The Big Ten needs another team to be able to have a conference championship, and they have to add a team from a state when there is already a Big Ten team. Notre Dame would be the prefect choice. Not only would it add another historically great team to the conference, but it adds a legitimacy to the conference that hasn’t been there in a recent years. Notre Dame benefits by joining a conference in which it already plays three teams annually (Michigan, Mich. St, Purdue) and it’s SOS gets little easier by having to play teams that just aren’t that good (IU and Illinois for example). They have already been in negotiations in the past, as well. This does mean, though, that they would have to leave the Big East conference in every other sport that they play. The only downside is that the Big East has better basketball right now than the Big Ten.

V. Get Lou Holtz to shut the hell up about us winning a national championship next year.

They have enough pressure from sports anchors and writers. They don’t need you adding more. You are a great coach, but quit saying that.

 

I think that’s it for now.

 

Bring on the debate.





Muddled Thoughts

18 11 2008

I seem to get more traffice to my website whenever I post something controversial. Take last week: I write a post against Prop 8 and I get 80 hits in one night. Previously, I wrote a post about how much I hate John Calvin, and I got 60 some hits in one night. I don’t think it’s a coincidence, but I would really like it if people read my posts for other reasons, you know?

I was thinking this the other day:

There was this very ominous sky this one night. I can remember that I was leaving the library somewhere around 3 AM and there was a little chill in the air. The dark clouds above slightly screened the full moon in above and I was enraptured in that immediate moment. I just felt so tiny and inconsequential. It was like at any moment the sky would just open its gaping mouth like a mighty bass and swallow me whole. The sky, the clouds, the moon, everything would just collapse. It would all be over that quick and everything in the world would just move on after a while. Almost as if nothing had happened. Of course, there would be that time where people would be sad about losing me, but after that…nothing.

That really bothers me. I know that we should feel like our lives are important and that everything we do has some sort of greater meaning. But I didn’t feel that right then. I felt like all we really are is just something temporary. Eventually, regardless of what you have done in this life, we all just fade out. What a cold, empty feeling that is. I hope you never feel like that.

Still, I don’t believe that’s what actually happens to people. But that’s what I felt at that moment in time. Life is so weird, wonderful, sad, uncomfortable, hard, inspiring, and everything else all at once. I think that’s what makes life so indescribable. We all do it, we all have different experiences with it, we all live it differently, and yet it is still the same thing that we all must deal with until we have made something beautiful from it.

Home in one week from today. I’m really excited to go downtown and walk Lincoln Park and get some Giordano’s. Really. How funny.





Anger Towards Prop 8

11 11 2008

When I heard that Prop 8 was passed, I was literally stunned. I thought that America was a country of civil rights for all people. I thought that we were a country that was at the fore-front of freedom for all people. But apparently I was proven wrong.

Many of the people who voted against Prop 8 belong to same religion as I do. Being a religion major at a university in Texas, I can say that there are a lot of people who interpret the Bible one way, and a lot of people who interpret it another. The interpretation that many people make is a bad one. They keep sending this message that God is so hateful, and so angry towards people. That’s not the message that I buy into. I believe that my God is a loving God and an understanding God . One that does not hate or condemn. I am so frustrated by fundamentalist Christians that are so blind that they condemn all of the people for who they are. Jesus did not hang out with the people that were popular or wealthy. He made friends with the tax collectors and the prostitutes. How can you expect people to be open to Jesus when you condemn them before you know them? Many Christians argue that Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed because of their homosexual ways. In fact, the cities were destroyed because they were inhospitable. This is evidenced in that when Jesus mentions the cities, he alludes to them when discussing why people should be welcoming to all people. Paul’s writings are also brought up, where it seems to mention that homosexuality is wrong. But, these passages are indirect at best, and when you go back to the original Greek, you get a different message entirely.

The most frustrating thing about Prop 8 is that it doesn’t ask you what your personal beliefs about same-sex marriage are. It asks should they be allowed to get married. That’s it. The people that voted Yes on Prop 8 are limiting the freedoms for LGBT citizens. In doing so, they are making LGBT people a lower-class of citizens because they cannot enjoy the right to marriage like everyone other citizen of this country. I’m not sure if there is something more un-American going on right now, with the exclusion of the hatred for making Obama our new president.

All LGBT people want is the same right that everyone else in this country has: the right to be legally married to the person they choose and enjoy and celebrate that love like everyone else. In modern times when there is so much hatred and so much pain, shouldn’t we grant the right to allow these people to enjoy the same right and privileges? Regardless of your personal or religious beliefs about same-sex marriage, you must agree that all people should be able to marry whoever they want. It’s a simple matter of “Do Unto Other as You Would Have Them Do Unto You”.

Can anyone honestly tell me that just because LGBT people express their love differently than everyone else, they should not have those certain and unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness? I don’t think there’s anything more to say than that.





Nostalgia

4 11 2008

I’m feeling so nostalgic tonight. I’ve been thinking a lot about home, high school, old friends, and lots of other things. I’m at this point where I completely and fully accept that the people I knew in high school are so different now, and we are all so very far apart. Maybe I feel like this because I don’t see any of them anymore, maybe it’s because I’m so far away from it all, or maybe it’s because even in high school, I was only really close to a very limited few of them. I see people’s profile pics on Facebook, and it’s like looking at the same person, but realizing that you don’t really know them anymore. They are just a shell of what you used to know. I keep thinking about how I would like to just experience one day of Kasper’s class again, and remember how I felt to be on the brink of something big; to feel so much hope and promise for the future. Just waiting to get out of high school and be really free from there. I miss feeling so naive about everything. I miss certain people a lot. I wonder sometimes what it would be like if I randomly ran into someone at Martin’s or somewhere like that right now, and what we would say to each other. I don’t know…some people I think I would just ignore, and others I think I would just say Hi. How strange and funny all at once.

So much has happened since then. I had so much frustration and pain, and I didn’t know what to do with all those emotions. My parents divorce has really been a defining moment for me, too. I think the way I dealt with that when I did, and how I would have dealt with that in the past is such a measuring stick of how much I really have grown in these few years. It would have been so easy and rational to react the way my brothers did, but it wouldn’t have been right in the long run.

I confess, though, that I am anxious to get home for those few short days at the end of this month. For what, I can’t really say. Maybe I just miss my dog. I hardly think that’s the reason though. I’m just not sure. It will just be nice to go somewhere somewhat familiar to me, and experience the wonderful Fall weather. I just miss experiencing all 4 seasons.

I feel like we are really on the brink, now. The news anchors keep saying this is a defining point in American history, and I honestly am starting to believe them. I think there are a lot of possible futures that will be narrowed down tomorrow/today. Lots of interesting things that could happen.

Regardless of what happens, I really do believe we’ll be OK. God’s not going to let us all go to Hell in a hand basket because of one election.

Thanks for reading. Take care, and have safe travels.

I’ve fallen in love with these songs. They really show where I am right now, I think.

There aren’t video’s on YouTube for these, but check them out anyway:

The Microphones: I Felt Your Shape

Sufjan Stevens: Chicago

Neutral Milk Hotel: The King of Carrot Flowers

Anything from Jose Gonzalez. What a brilliant artist.