Blue and Gold Illustrated

Nov. 2, 2019

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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Page 4 of 63 NOV. 2, 2019 5 FAN FORUM ON ANY GIVEN DAY … During Notre Dame's bye week (Oct. 19), No. 7 Wisconsin lost a game (to Illinois) in which it was favored by 31 points. Which got me to thinking … what is Notre Dame's biggest upset loss, point-spread wise? Would it be to Syracuse in 2008? In researching the Knute Rockne era, I never came across point spreads as we know them today. Any refer- ence to favorites or underdogs usu- ally put it in terms of betting odds, such as "an 8-5 favorite." Jim Lefebvre Executive Director, Knute Rockne Memorial Society Mr. Lefebvre, according to a published report, Notre Dame was a 35-point fa- vorite against Missouri in 1972 at home — but lost 30-26. Head coach Ara Parseghian's Fighting Irish entered the game 4-0 and had out- scored their opponents 130-30: North- western (37-0), Purdue (35-14), Michi- gan State (16-0) and Pitt (42-16). Meanwhile, Missouri was coming off a 1-10 season in 1971 under first- year head coach Al Onofrio (the suc- cessor to future Notre Dame head coach Dan Devine) — and the week before the Notre Dame game it was crushed 62-0 by Nebraska. In Parseghian's last year in 1974, reigning national champion Notre Dame was approximately a 28-point favorite versus 0-1-1 Purdue, which had tied Mi- ami (Ohio) at home the week prior (7-7). The Irish lost 31-20 at home to the Boil- ermakers, falling behind 24-0 in the first quarter. Naturally, the next week Purdue lost to Duke and would finish 4-6-1. In the 1995 opener versus Northwest- ern, Notre Dame was a 28-point favorite but lost 17-15 at home. The Wildcats then lost the next week to Miami (Ohio), but went on to win the Big Ten and fin- ish the regular season 10-1 before losing to USC in the Rose Bowl. TRUTH MATTERS Congrats on arriving at some ideal locutions to express Notre Dame's true number of football national ti- tles, as presented in the August is- sue of BGI (p. 50), the Sept. 23 issue (p. 54), and Oct. 12 (p. 14). Another optimal way I can sug- gest: "13 NCAA-recognized consen- sus national championships." (Not the publicized 11.) As long as BGI keeps presenting the truth about this, sooner or later the fake news propagated by Notre Dame Sports Information (detrimen- tal to Notre Dame itself in one of the most absurd public relations fumbles of all time) will have to give way and be rectified. The truth will come out — eventually. John Gaski South Bend, Ind. BE HEARD! Send your letters to: Letters Blue & Gold Illustrated P. O. Box 1007, Notre Dame, IN 46556 or e-mail to: Ara Parseghian led the Irish to a 95-17-4 record and two national championships in his 11 seasons as head coach. However, his 1972 squad fell victim to the biggest upset (according to the point spread) in Irish history, falling 30-26 against a 35-point underdog in Missouri. PHOTO COURTESY NOTRE DAME MEDIA RELATIONS FROM THE WEB As part of its celebration of the 150th season of col- lege football this year, ESPN on Oct. 22 ran a one-hour feature exclusively on the University of Notre Dame's football history and the school's profound impact in the game. While many Fighting Irish followers feared there might be a negative slant, overall the subscribers on were impressed with its production, which is likely to be rerun in the coming weeks. Here were a sample of the responses: Chamgel: Thought it was well done. A good mix of praising the program while asking the legit ques- tions about if it can ever win a title again … They mentioned the Manti Te'o girlfriend thing, I actually didn't have an issue with it because they used it to show that even though people want to say Notre Dame is irrelevant, everything will always be bigger at Notre Dame. Even mentioned if that had hap- pened at another school it wouldn't have been nearly as big a deal. Rionegro: The ESPN piece was very fair. Irish54: It was reasonably fair and historical — more facts than opinions. Ninermark: By and large, fair and balanced. Appreciated that they delved into the context of our historical independence and tied that into the wave of anti-Catholicism and being denied entrance into the Big 10. Kwsusmc: I thought it was excellent. The parts I disagreed with were not the parts I thought I'd be disagreeing with. Loved the parts of why Notre Dame never joined the Big Ten, why Notre Dame went coast to coast, why ND is ND —the anti-Catholic biases, subway alums, what made the Irish the Irish. Going to re-watch it several times and again … Spn2103: It was very well done. I took a class with Ivan Maisel last year, and he was always quite fair about Notre Dame's place in the sport. He knew his stuff. UserND83: The special was remarkably positive about Notre Dame and its place in college football. They certainly weren't wrong. I was just very surprised. JOIN THE CONVERSATION AT BLUEANDGOLD.COM! GET A 60-DAY FREE TRIAL WITH CODE: IRISH60

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