Blue and Gold Illustrated

Preseason 2021

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

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64 PRESEASON 2021 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED IRISH ECHOES JIM LEFEBVRE L e a d i n g u p t o N o t r e Dame's meeting with Wisconsin at Chicago's Soldier Field on Sept. 25, we will explore some of the many strands that connect the Windy City with the Golden Dome. Today, a look at just some of the figures who de- fine this unique connection. A CHANGE OF PLANS Two of the most impact- ful Chicagoans related to Notre Dame athletics, in ret- rospect, were John Plant and John Devine, track and field teammates of a young Knute Rockne in the first decade of the 20th century. Plant and Devine were headed to enroll at the school and encouraged Rockne to join them. "Whoever heard of Notre Dame?" Rockne quipped, knowing full well that the school had developed a strong reputation in baseball, and in 1909 had beaten Michigan for the first time in football. Rockne, who had been saving money for four years af- ter high school while working at the Chicago Post Office, had his sights set on the University of Illinois. But Plant and Devine persisted, and athletics were a secondary con- sideration in their pitch. Campus em- ployment was plentiful and easy to obtain, they argued. And, after graduation, South Bend was a thriving hub of industry that offered ample career opportunities. Rockne finally agreed. PAIR OF KINDRED SPIRITS After graduation in 1914, Rockne dove into his coaching responsibili- ties. One of them was tackle Charlie Bachman, out of Chicago's Engle- wood High School. Like Rockne, Bachman excelled in track and field, eventually holding the world record in the discus throw. In football, the pair found them- selves kindred spirits, continually dissecting the action and trying to design "the perfect play." Bachman had a meteoric rise as a head coach. After one season at Northwestern, he coached Kansas State for eight years, followed by five at Florida. Rockne would time his family's Miami vacations with stops at Gainesville to brainstorm. After Rockne's death in 1931, Bach- man would go on to lead Michigan State for 13 seasons through 1946, setting up the Spartans' entry into the Big Ten in 1950. FROM THE STOCKYARDS TO CAMPUS The Notre Dame campus, 90 miles from Chicago, had drawn students from the "city of broad shoulders" ever since Notre Dame's founding in 1842. In the early 20th century, that included students attending Notre Dame's grade school (called the min- ims). One year, 68 of the 110 "min- ims" were from Chicago. In 1910, one of them was sixth- grader Norm Barry, whose father had emigrated from Ireland's County Cork and became a broker in the Chicago Stockyards. Barry showed promise both as a student and an ath- lete and eventually became a varsity football player. Barry was a teammate of George Gipp from 1918-20. Barry was a ver- satile weapon as a rusher and passer, and he caught the final pass thrown by Gipp in 1920, when the Irish went 9-0 and gained national recognition. Barry left Notre Dame with a law degree in 1921, and like so many of Rockne's players, coached football. One sea- son, he had the distinction of coaching two teams to their respective championships — DeLaSalle Institute in the prestigious Chicago Catholic League, and the Chicago Car- dinals in the struggling Na- tional Football League. Away from football, Barry excelled as an attorney and became a prominent Chicago judge and Illinois state legis- lator. YOU'VE GOT A NEW NAME In the late 1920s, while Barry was coaching at DeLaSalle, there was a somewhat clumsy, oversized lad roaming the halls, doing his best to keep up in school while attempting to play violin in the school orchestra. One day, Barry approached the strapping student and asked, "Why aren't you on my football team?" "I don't think my parents would allow me," came the response. "Well, let's go talk with them," said the coach. "That's not going to work — they don't speak English." Barry would not be deterred. Once the parents' objections were overcome, the 200-pound youngster joined the football team. At a prac- tice, Barry scolded him. "You're having trouble moving this 160-pounder … and you're a moose!" The legend that became Edward "Moose" Krause took hold. As an attorney, Barry helped the family Americanize their name from the Lithuanian Kriauciunas to Krause. And most importantly, Barry put Krause within the sphere of Knute Rockne. Moose entered Notre Dame in the fall of 1930 and played fresh- man football in Rockne's final year. Krause played three varsity sea- sons under Rockne's successor, Edward "Moose" Krause earned All-America honors for the Irish foot- ball and basketball teams in the early 1930s. After getting his start in coaching, he went on to serve as Notre Dame's director of athletics from 1949-81. PHOTO COURTESY UNIVERSITY OF NOTRE DAME ARCHIVES Ties That Bind Notre Dame And Chicago Extend Over More Than A Century

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