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Notre Dame History

Notre Dame’s Fiesta Bowl History

Notre Dame Fiesta Bowl History

ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA……… The bowl season was ruled by four bowls: Cotton Bowl Rose Bowl Sugar Bowl Orange Bowl Sure there were other bowls, but they were merely ladies-in-waiting, the handmaidens to the Cotton, Rose, Sugar and Orange. It was in a galaxy far, far away but New Year’s day had a set pattern. The Cotton Bowl started off the day, followed by the Rose Bowl, which often ended with another Big Ten Team succumbing to the Pac 8 or Pac 10 just about the time the sun succumbed to the San Gabriel mountains. Night fell and ...

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Notre Dame Boston College Rivalry History

Notre Dame - Boston College Rivalry

Though natural rivals as the two most prominent Catholic colleges playing Big Time Football,  it took quite a while for the Boston College-Notre Dame series to take root. Part of the reason may have been that Boston College felt that Notre Dame stole Frank Leahy back to South Bend. Frank Leahy  had coached at Boston College, spectacularly, in ’39 and ’40, and was a glistening 20-2 for a .909 winning percentage, the greatest in Boston College History.  Nevertheless, when Notre Dame came calling it was a swift and easy decision for Frank Leahy to return to his, and Rockne’s,   alma ...

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Notre Dame – Pitt Rivalry History

Jeff Samardzija and Notre Dame made a statement against PItt in 2005 but since then every Pitt-ND game has been a battle.  Photo: Andy Altenburger // Icon Sportswire

Pitt first appeared on Notre Dame’s schedule in 1909. The rivalry was a natural. Relative proximity. Same independent status. Further, as Western Pennsylvania became settled with immigrants destined to work in coal mines and steel mills, many of the workers were from Catholic countries and families, and they were well aware of the significance of playing their new country’s pre-eminent Catholic University. Of course, Notre Dame was interested in poaching Pitt’s private preserve of football talent. Playing Pitt’s Panthers would increase Notre Dame’s exposure in this talent rich area. The Pittsburgh area yielded two of Notre Dame’s seven Heisman trophy ...

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Irish History 101: Leon Hart, 1949 Heisman Winner

(Photo: Notre Dame Media Relations)

Hart was born in Pittsburgh, and was recruited to Notre Dame from Turtle Creek, PA, just Southeast of Pittsburgh.  Hart’s recruiting had some drama. Leahy had assigned the wonderful Moose Krause to recruit Hart and he had been on him like basmati on rice. Hart had not yet visited Notre Dame.  Read more about how Hart ended up at Notre Dame and became the third Heisman winner in school history.

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Notre Dame’s Four Horsemen

Four Horsemen of Notre Dame

Notre Dame’s preeminence in the history of college football is no accident. But it has been accelerated by the confluence of great coaching, great players and fertile circumstance. If the yang of Notre Dame folklore is “Win one for the Gipper,” a blend of a great coach, a great player on a hospital bed and great players on the field of honor, and the circumstance of a half time deficit against Army, then the yin is the lyrical saga of the Four Horsemen. Knute Rockne was no shrinking violet, and football may never have seen a more confident coach, but Rockne preferred to ...

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Irish History: Notre Dame Ends Oklahoma’s Streak


With Notre Dame set to travel to Norman, Oklahoma to take on the Sooners this weekend for the first time since 1966, we will stroll down memory lane today with a look back at one of Notre Dame’s most famous wins – the 1957 victory over Oklahoma in Norman that ended the Sooners record long winning streak. This excerpt from Always Fighting Irish by John Heisler is printed with the permission of Triumph Books / www.triumphbooks.com/AlwaysFightingIrish Lynch’s Late Run Ends Record Sooners Streak The odds were stacked heavily against the Irish. The 1957 Sooners, defending national champions and No. 2 in the weekly polls, ...

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Notre Dame Football ESPN Gameday History

Before this weekend's visit from ESPN's College Gameday crew, the last time they had been to Notre Dame for a live broadcast was for the 2005 thriller against USC.  (Photo: Andy Altenburger/Icon SMI).

With ESPN set to broadcast live from Notre Dame’s campus on Saturday for this weekend’s showdown wit #17 Stanford, we take a look back at Notre Dame’s history of playing in contests where ESPN has set up shop. Overall, Notre Dame has been in contests in front of the Gameday crew 20 times since the show first aired on the site of game – Florida State’s visit to South Bend in ’93 – with Notre Dame amassing an 8-12 record in those contests.  ESPN has been on site on Notre Dame’s campus for 7 of those 20 games with the ...

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Where Are They Now: Marv Russell

(Photo: Matt Cashore / USPRESSWIRE)

Growing up in a Methodist family and wanting to become a minister, Marv Russell’s early path did not seem to include a later stop as a football player at Notre Dame. A young man who dealt with adversity many times and at one point was diagnosed with dyslexia, Russell put his strong work ethic and determination to good use on the way to a successful football career and becoming a book author, keynote speaker, consultant and nationally known leadership expert in the business world. Russell now commutes between Chicago and Florida with his wife (and fellow Notre Dame graduate) Catherine. The couple has two grown children, ...

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A Look Back: Notre Dame – Miami Rivalry

Notre Dame Fighting Irish linebacker Carlo Calabrese (44) holds the Hyundai Sun Bowl trophy after Notre Dame defeated the Miami Hurricanes 33-17 at the Sun Bowl. (Photo: Matt Cashore / US PRESSWIRE)

With Notre Dame and Miami set to square off in this year’s edition of the Shamrock Series this weekend in Chicago, today we’ll take a look back at the history of the Notre Dame – Miami rivalry. Irish, Hurricanes Split First Meetings Notre Dame and Miami met for the first time in 1950 when the 5th ranked Terry Brennan led Fighting Irish traveled to Miami and beat the 15th ranked Andy Gufstafson led Hurricanes 14-0.  The two schools wouldn’t meet for a second time for another five years when the Hurricanes enacted some revenge on the Irish with a 28-21 ...

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Irish History: Notre Dame Upsets #1 Miami ’88


This excerpt from Always Fighting Irish by John Heisler is printed with the permission of Triumph Books / www.triumphbooks.com/AlwaysFightingIrish The edges of the seats in Notre Dame Stadium may be worn thin, but the Stadium’s magic remains alive and well. The same could be said for Notre Dame’s football program. That was the end result when Pat Terrell batted away Steve Walsh’s two-point conversion pass with 45 seconds to play, as the fourth-rated Irish locked up a stunning 31–30 upset of No. 1–ranked Miami in 1988. Erased was Miami’s mystique and all the embarrassment it had handed the Irish in recent years. The game had such an impact on ...

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