I was trying to come up with some contempt for the Fighting Irish today as part of the crown jewel of our TSISB week. After all, as a new member of the Big Ten, I am supposed to hate the Blue and Gold with everything in me. At minimum, I should at least have some hatred or built up ire towards the petulance of the Irish and their obsession with tradition that rivals both the Big Ten and the Cornhuskers (which is no small feat mind you).
But, why am I supposed to really hate Notre Dame? I mean, as you look through history and ponder these thoughts for a moment, there really does not seem to be a scenario where I would harbor bad will towards my friends in South Bend. In historic perspective, Nebraska is responsible for the Four Horsemen's 2 losses in the 20's, responsible for Parseghian's worse loss in his career (a 40-6 beatdown in the Orange Bowl), and most recently back-to-back losses during Crouch's run to the Heisman. In every possible way, the Cornhuskers had Notre Dame's number, and to be hones, I just don't have the hatred built up like Michigan, Michigan State, and Purdue fans might after continuous play.
As I read through some archives on some Husker sites, the only thing I could even come up with to explain my irrational hatred (you know, outside of oversaturation) would only make sense on the Notre Dame side. Apparently Cornhusker fans were really terrible people when it came to tolerance of those with other religious beliefs/traditions. According to Husker Century - Part I, an ETV production, historian Joel Geyer described the following after the Four Horsemen's second loss in Lincoln:
By 1925, when the Irish traveled again to Memorial Stadium, the anti-Catholicism demonstrated by "outside hoodlums" had exploded. The student booster section greeted the team with profanities and chanted "Fish Eaters, Fish Eaters" and "Mackerel-Snappers Go Home." Some Nebraska newspapers referred to the South Bend team as the "Horrible Hiberians" and "Rough-neck Irish." Adding defeat to insult the Huskers won the game 17-0, celebrations spilled out into the street and according to the Nebraska Journal "...the riot" lasted for two days.
So for all of you that think Nebraska fans are the greatest? Yeah... Probably not so much. So like I said, there is very little reason to hate Notre Dame. I don't hate Catholics, I don't hate history, and I don't really think competitively it has been that big a deal (both dating way before I was alive and currently).
Then again, having a measured stance towards the Irish is lame. I'm supposed to be rubbing salt in the wounds! Without a lot of history, that would be difficult... you know, if the following never transpired! So Notre Dame fans, buckle your seatbelts, grab some popcorn and enjoy some letters dated September 12, 2000 from your very own Notre Dame Observer. I think you'll remember these thoughts, and I am sure this will bring back some great memories. After all, this is your life!
Note: All letters sourced via the Archived Notre Dame Online Observer
September 11, 2000
God. Country. Cash. Notre Dame.
I hope you are happy, for you should be ashamed. You have taken the "house that Rockne built" and turned it into a den of thieves.
class of '88
Now what are we talking about? I forget what could have possibly happened that caused one Patrick Grady to quote Jesus himself... Hmmmm...
September 10, 2000
Last year, on a number of occasions, the alumni wrote to The Observer describing their contempt for the student body's lack of spirit and integrity. Last Saturday, the alumni who sold out their school showed the lack of spirit and integrity.
Lee Corso summed it all up the best when he said, "It was an embarrassment for Notre Dame to see their stadium in a sea of red. I can't believe it happened." Neither can we, Mr. Corso, neither can we.
And our hearts forever, love thee ... precious cash.
Wait, what are Robert, Justin, and Mike, Sophomores of Zahm hall referring to? A, "Sea of Red?" This was in South Bend where football is revered and Touchdown Jesus blesses those who put on the gold helmets, right? What on earth could they be so worked up over? And quoting Lee Corso? That certainly means things are dire.
September 11, 2000
There has to be the technology to have a picture enlarged from film from the blimp to mark every red shirt in the stadium and relieve those ticket holders of their right to purchase tickets for at least five years if not longer.
This should never be allowed to happen again.
Patrick J. Foley
Illinois State University
Oh Patrick of Illinois State University. I hope you are that engineer that can mark every red shirt in the stadium. Certainly that would make it all go away... (Hey Notre Dame fans... Are you excited for what's coming? I bet you are!)
September 11, 2000
Heading into Saturday's matchup against Nebraska, Notre Dame had lost seven consecutive games away from Notre Dame Stadium. Now they have lost eight.
The Nebraska fans embarrassed us on ESPN GameDay with their "'Husker, Home Game," chant. Notre Dame's reputation as a University is based largely on the perception that our students and alumni are rabidly loyal. In that respect, we took a major step backwards on Saturday.
Oh Steven, sometimes you just gotta accept that which you cannot control... I'm gonna go ahead and leave this here. It's been all sorts of fun.
ND Fans (via neumayer)