Open thread: The obligatory “Notre Dame vs. Alabama” post

posted at 8:01 pm on January 7, 2013 by Allahpundit

8 p.m. ET on ESPN. When trekking across a news desert, we drink at any oasis we find. Besides, it’s either this or another Hagel thread.

At WaPo, author Michael Leahy wonders: Do Catholics have a duty to root for the Irish?

[T]o this day, Notre Dame remains a political and social battleground for American Catholics. The university’s invitation for President Obama to deliver the 2009 commencement address became a national controversy, with conservative Catholics opposing the president’s positions on abortion rights and stem-cell research. And last year, the university filed suit against the federal government, seeking to overturn a requirement in Obama’s health-care law that employers offer insurance plans including contraception coverage — a move that more politically moderate church members resented, concerned that Notre Dame would seek to deprive women, Catholic or not, of such coverage.

So it was perhaps inevitable that the school and the football team, two of the church’s paramount American symbols, would come to be viewed with a mix of weariness and cynicism by a new generation. To some Catholics, Notre Dame is that righteous relative who arrives at the holiday dinner beating his chest over his fealty and good deeds — the one there to remind others at the table that they have not measured up…

That perception has solidified in the years since, with the realization that some gifted players never will attract Notre Dame’s interest, beginning with academically underachieving high school stars whom other universities are only too happy to grab — the football giants in the Southeastern Conference, including Alabama, among them. In big-game trash-talking before Monday’s championship contest, some Irish fans’ T-shirts mock the perceived socioeconomic station of their Southern, state-school opponent. “Catholics vs. Convicts” has given way to “Golden Domers vs. Mobile Homers” and “Catholics vs. Cousins.”…

In its defense, the university can point to the graduation rate of its football players — it’s the highest among the big teams in the nation, and this is the first time that the leader in graduation is also tops in the polls — as evidence that the school has its priorities in order. This seems to be Notre Dame’s lasting, self-imposed role in sports: the earnest ethicist, the dogged standard-maker, the nag — much like the church felt to me in my youth.

ND looked good against the two top-ten teams they played this year, but if you watched them barely survive against BYU, Purdue, and Pitt, it’s hard to see them beating the lords of the SEC. Leahy’s pick: The Tide by two touchdowns. I agree. But then, an atheist would say that.


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Comment pages: 1 2

Let’s talk about the weather.

listens2glenn on January 7, 2013 at 11:04 PM

Southern Baptists – 35
Catholics – 7

Galtian on January 7, 2013 at 11:07 PM

‘Bama scores again. What a surprise!

CyberCipher on January 7, 2013 at 11:08 PM

This game is the EXACT reason why NCAA football needs a playoff…

Khun Joe on January 7, 2013 at 11:10 PM

I’m pretty sure that this is the most pathetic and humiliating performance delivered by a “No. 1″ ranked team that I have EVER witnessed.

CyberCipher on January 7, 2013 at 11:11 PM

Southern Baptists – 35
Catholics – 7

Galtian on January 7, 2013 at 11:07 PM

It is 42-7… you should have waited 5 minutes…

Khun Joe on January 7, 2013 at 11:11 PM

But then, an atheist would say that.

Why? Nick Saban is more Catholic than probably 98% of all professors at that ‘catholic’ University. He’s helping to raise money to build a larger church in Tuscaloosa, because the one that serves most of the UofA campus is busting at the seams. :)

Deo Gratias!

Oh, yeah, and this Catholic Bama girl feels no duty whatsoever to root for ND.

ROOOOOOOLL, TIDE, ROLL!!!

pannw on January 7, 2013 at 11:14 PM

It’s looking like for 4 years straight the BCS National Championship trophy has gone to the state of Alabama.

Galtian on January 7, 2013 at 11:16 PM

Q: What does a Notre Dame fan do after beating Alabama?
A: Turn off the Xbox and go to bed.

Galtian on January 7, 2013 at 11:22 PM

Q: What does a Notre Dame fan do after beating Alabama?
A: Turn off the Xbox and go to bed.

Galtian on January 7, 2013 at 11:22 PM

Well, yeah, either that, or take the Xbox apart and try to figure out what’s wrong with it.

CyberCipher on January 7, 2013 at 11:25 PM

My collie says:

Maybe the Xbox has a virus.

CyberCipher on January 7, 2013 at 11:26 PM

Great! The most drama in the game is between Alabama 75 and Alabama 10.

ExpressoBold on January 7, 2013 at 11:28 PM

75 to snap the ball just a little high on the next 4 plays and miss a crucial block that would save 10′s knees on a crushing tackle. Too bad, Mac!

ExpressoBold on January 7, 2013 at 11:33 PM

ROLLLLLLLL TIDE

Barred on January 7, 2013 at 11:38 PM

Notre Dame should have got Allstate to protect them from mayhem like this.

Galtian on January 7, 2013 at 11:47 PM

Alabama vs. LSU 2011 1 and 1

Al vs. LSU 2012, LSU held them by the nose and kicked them in the ass until a horrible coaching decision (unbelievably bad prevent winning defense) allowed AL to score.

Notre Dame is barely in the same league but is still no. 2. No common sense what so ever.

aniptofar on January 8, 2013 at 12:13 AM

I predicted here, and everywhere:

Alabama 52
Notre Dame 3

Didn’t miss it by much.

Moesart on January 8, 2013 at 12:39 AM

It’s really tough to be a surprise title contender in college football. Notre Dame could get there but it’ll take at least another two top flight recruiting classes before they can really compete with the Alabamas and LSUs of the world.

I like how the announcers kept talking about the missed tackles. Yeah, they’re missing because the Bama boys are bigger, stronger, faster and just all around better athletes.

hump1201 on January 8, 2013 at 1:56 AM

Notre Dame, now you know the difference between getting beaten and getting processed…RTR

Knott Buyinit on January 8, 2013 at 1:58 AM

Like I said a month ago, the national champion was the winner of Alabama-Georgia. Now THAT was a game! In any case the SEC rules!

MustangSally on January 8, 2013 at 4:08 AM

I knew before the kickoff that ND was no match for Bama. ND was totally demoralized after the 1st quarter. They had no answer for the Bama offense or defense. Bama could play their game and bigger, stronger, and faster will get er done every time. This is SEC football. Ole Miss beat the crapola out of Pitt who gave ND a hard time. Believe!

Kissmygrits on January 8, 2013 at 8:53 AM

What a joke…there are at least five teams in the SEC, plus Oregon, that would have beaten ND.

cajunpatriot on January 8, 2013 at 9:04 AM

Not for long. You have to whip the cream of the crop to win the SEC.There are no Eastern Michigan Techs there.

Southernblogger on January 7, 2013 at 9:02 PM

No, only Western Kentuckies and Florida Atlantics.

Dunedainn on January 8, 2013 at 9:22 AM

*rolleyes*

Dunedainn on January 8, 2013 at 9:23 AM

No, only Western Kentuckies and Florida Atlantics.

Dunedainn on January 8, 2013 at 9:22 AM

Ummm, Western Kentucky and Florida Atlantic are both in the Sun Belt Conference.

Try again.

Gator Country on January 8, 2013 at 9:45 AM

“Look! It’s Lucky O’Shamrock!”

mojo on January 8, 2013 at 11:03 AM

Ummm, Western Kentucky and Florida Atlantic are both in the Sun Belt Conference.

Try again.

Gator Country on January 8, 2013 at 9:45 AM

And…? Teams play outside their conferences and even divisions all the time, the SEC is no exception. Hmmm…Florida vs Bowling Green, Alabama vs WKU, etc. No big deal, they do it to give the other teams’ players exposure and the colleges ticket money.

But it does still count in the win-loss stats. So the reference to wins outside the division or conference is a valid one. All conferences get criticized for these so-called walks in the park games, nothing new nothing unusual.

On the other hand ND has always avoided joining a conference, and that’s a whole other can of worms.

Deanna on January 8, 2013 at 2:35 PM

Comment pages: 1 2