Monday, November 05, 2012

My favorite Notre Dame memories

Ruining Notre Dame's 1993 and 2002 seasons are what this rivalry is known for, but there are a few other games that make me smile when I think back to BC vs Notre Dame. When we were rattling off wins in the 2000s there was a great Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner aspect to the series. The Irish fans were sure this was the year that they would finally put BC in its place. And every year we would pull the game out and leave them wondering how it happened again. These are three games I love. Leave your Irish memories below.

1994 BC 30, Notre Dame 11
This was Notre Dame's first visit to Alumni. I was a freshman and this felt like a big game and a big deal. Early on Dan Henning faked a field goal that we converted into a touchdown and the momentum never stopped. Notre Dame was still ranked in the Top 10, but the postgame storming of the field wasn't about the upset. It felt more like a continuation of the celebration from 1993.

2004 BC 24, Notre Dame 23
Notre Dame has just cracked the Top 25 again.They dominated the first half and should have been up more than 20-7. In the second half Paul Peterson took over and led us to a comeback win. The game-winning score came with less than a minute left, when he connected with a Tony Gonzalez on a long TD. I would love to see this game again, but Notre Dame and their partner Hulu have never even put up a highlight clip. Aside from beating Notre Dame, what I loved about the emergence of Peterson was we were finally fun to watch. In the first few years under TOB BC progressed, but still had a workman like feel and style. We would dink and dunk and keep it on the ground. Peterson -- this tiny Mormon QB -- improvised a little and started throwing aggressively downfield. It was a revelation to BC fans. He was the John the Baptist to the Matt Ryan years.

2008 BC 17, Notre Dame 0
By 2008 it was already well established that Charlie Weis and Jimmy Clausen were arrogant asses. That is why shutting them out in Alumni was so much fun. Clausen was picked off four times and after every INT the BC line used him as a blocking sled. The highlight of the night was Raji bullrushing their offensive line into their own running back. It is another clip that used to be on Youtube until Notre Dame requested its removal.


Knucklehead said...

Watch the eagle/mascot under the right side of the goal post. Best memory EVER.

eagleboston said...

I was at the 2004 game in South Bend. From our seats, we could not see that Gonzalez made the catch. It was awesome to see the utter shock on the Notre Dame fans' faces.

JBQ said...

BC will be back but this is not the year. The faithful have to keep the faith and keep it close until Moses arrives and unleashes Rettig with a full head of steam.

CatabEagle said...

2003, Josh Ott's INT returned for a touchdown to put BC up 14-7 against an undefeated ND. About 50% of my friends were banned for life from ND that game, and it was entirely worth it.

Tim said...

catab- it was 2002

CatabEagle said...

Tim - Good catch. Was thinking class of 2003. It was 2002, it was cold, loud, and glorious.

BCAlum2000 said...

All great memories, but nothing can or ever will top 1993 and Gordon's kick. Despite being just a sophomore in high school, I was captivated by this game. Despite deep BC roots, I never got fully into BC football until this game. Have been obsessed ever since. This was THE game for my generation of BC kids much like Flutie's miracle was for the generation of BC'ers before me. The 2002 game was classic as well especially watching all those ND players literally crying on their home field in their cute little green jerseys.

Big Jack Krack said...

My daughter was at the 93 game - what an experience for her!

I was at the 2004 game with my wife - seated high up in the corner of the end zone. Good view of the entire field.

I was very confident in BC and especially Paul Peterson that season and that day!

When ND went ahead 20 to 7, the ND fans started to work on us - and me. Cries of "Who's your Daddy?", "Who's your Daddy"? were getting louder and louder. That was the year Grady Little left Pedro Martinez in the game, and the Yankees loudly prevailed - drove me nuts.

Well I have never backed down to a crowd of opposing fans. I smilingly yelled how ND would lose by 1 point - 21 to 20. I even danced in the aisle several times.

I was peppered with derogatory comments but I kept laughing.

When ND got to 23 points, they were simply over-confident. I remember 23 to 14 and 23 to 17.

But as the game wound down, you could feel the doubts creeping in and the silent prayers were being offerred up. The atmosphere was tense, when earkier the fans were brimming over with confidence - ND fans knew that Peterson could buy his own time.

And then it happenned with about a minute to go. As good as Peterson's scrambling pass was (30 yards I think) Gonzalez' catch was even better. Fantastic.

And here comes the best part. As we lined up for the extra point, with the score 23 to 23, I danced up and down the aisle yelling you know what.

With a few hey you A.. H...s go home as well!

Nobody had the guts to bother me - they were too busy rushing out of the stadium before the game was over - hell ND could have possibly gotten into FG position - but the ND fans do not react well when things go wrong.

In fact - they suck!

Go BC - we haven't got a snowball's chance this year under Frank Spaziani, but beat ND anyway. Players, let it all hang out and don't take any s...!

Big Jack Krack said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PJeagle said...

I was in South Bend in 2004 also. After BC took the lead 24-23 with 52 seconds to go, ND did try a field goal from abou mid field which was nowhere near. The silence was deafening. The ND crowd was stunned and left quickly. The take away memory was the sound of cheers of "We are BC" reverberating throughout that ancient stadium and hearing "For Boston" over and over agiain. The spontaneity of the jubilant BC fans was in stark contrast to the scripted regimen of the ND cheer by the numbers. The ND mystique is really a cult which you don't fully appreciate until you have a chance to observe it firsthand. Would love to duplicate the fun and joy of another BC upset win on Saturday evening.

mod34b said...

The ND 2002 "rare green jersey" insult was wonderful.

Here isa press account


With Notre Dame a 10-point favorite, it was a no-brainer that NBC, trying to keep its viewers keen on the idea of a possible upset, would flash back to David Gordon's historic 1993 kick. That was the year Notre Dame was 10-0 and eying the national championship only to have the Eagles come into the stadium and pull a shocker, 41-39, on Gordon's 41-yard field goal as time expired. The now-famous kick gave the boot to the Irish's title hopes.
But I doubt Irish coach Tyrone Willingham was showing his team that film ad nauseam this week. His players were only 10 or 11 years old at the time. Willingham was coaching the Minnesota Vikings' running backs in '93.
Besides, that was a Boston College team that finished 9-3 after starting out 0-2 and had pounded Pittsburgh 33-0 and Virginia Tech 48-34 the previous two weeks. The 1993 win ranks right up their with BC's greatest, and for a lot of Eagles on that squad it was sweet revenge because Notre Dame showed no mercy in slamming them 54-7 the year before.
If there was a revenge factor yesterday, it was carried by Notre Dame, which lost at BC last year 21-17 when St. Pierre and Jamal Burke hooked up on a 20-yard TD play early in the fourth quarter. But that was an Irish team so messed up it got Bob Davie fired.

Read more:

mod34b said...

Oops. This is the beginning of tecarticle. Great stuff

SOUTH BEND, Ind. - The grin on Tom O'Brien's face seemed to cover the entire 100 yards of Notre Dame Stadium. Now understand, the Boston College coach is no grinnin' fool. Pretty serious most of the time, truth be told.
But this was different. His Eagles had just bumped off Notre Dame, an Irish team that was unbeaten, fourth-ranked, thinking national championship and, just to show the Eagles they meant business, they came out with those rare green jerseys which shout this is a special game for us.
So what?
"I just left a very excited locker room," said O'Brien in the post-game press conference after the monumental 14-7 victory before a record ND Stadium crowd of 80,935.
Oh, and another thing. "Our kids were very excited when they saw the green jerseys," said O'Brien.
He wasn't sure if it was insulting or a show of respect. What it ultimately was for this sometimes maligned BC team was sweet. Just sweet, to win a game like that in this environment.
O'Brien's last comment about the green jerseys. "You just show up and you play," he said. In other words, it's what's inside the jerseys that really matters.
"I don't know what to say," said O'Brien. "We played hard, we hung in there, we forced turnovers, which we hadn't been doing."
One came on a 71-yard interception return by Josh Ott in the second quarter to put BC up 14-0. Ott's a 6-foot-2, 225-pound linebacker, and 71 yards is a lot of real estate for him.
"It seemed like forever," said Ott. "Maybe it's because I'm just slow. I kept thinking, 'Don't trip, don't trip.' "
The BC defense was magnificent, even though three key guys are out with injuries and O'Brien has had to work with a young group. "I can't say we're young on defense anymore," he said.
Derrick Knight's terrific running went a long way in deciding this one. He had 129 yards and a TD and kept the chains moving in the critical late stages of the game. "When there isn't a hole, he finds one," said BC center Ben Koppen.
It was BC's second straight win over Notre Dame, and the third time the Eagles have won here in the last four trips. "It was so awesome," said Knight. "We don't have to fear this team. Or any team."
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mod34b said...

Fear in the Enemy's Eyes!!

From NYT on 2002 game

Josh Ott, the linebacker who recovered one Notre Dame fumble and ran back an interception for a touchdown, said of the green shirts: ''I loved them. They looked great out there. It made us more excited.''

Why was that? ''Up until now, we don't get any respect,'' Ott said. ''We finally arrived at a place at the table and we came to eat. We loved it.''

Along with losing three fumbles and two interceptions, the Irish dropped the ball four other times and got it back. They also botched a field-goal attempt. On one of those fumbles, early in the second quarter, Holiday was hit so hard helmet to helmet that he spent the rest of the half on the sideline.

''We shook them up,'' Ott said. ''You could see it in people's eyes.''

WI_Eagle said...

What I remember most about the 2004 game (I was there and was a junior that year) was that a few plays before Gonzo's TD catch we had a 4th and ~15 near midfield after a false start and a sack. With the game on the line The Stormin Mormon calmly rolled out right and hit a wide open Larry Lester on the sideline close to the sticks for a first down. I always wondered (but have never seen the replay) if the ND cornerback slipped or something, b/c Lester was wide open. He had a monster game that day.

Joe Dunfinckle said...

I remember laughing with glee during the 2002 game when, after about the 7th fumble by ND, NBC announcers actually asked the sideline reporter gal if the fumbles could be attributed to the fabric of Notre Dame's new "slippery" green jerseys.
Boy it was fun when BC could actually stick it to those one-sided a-holes at NBC.
Fire Spaz.

Veteranscribe said...

The fake field goal in the 30-11 game was a planned play nicknamed "Leprechaun." Holder (for the first time) was Matt Hasselbeck. He did not score the TD himself but made the first down.

mod34b said...

Joe - good memory. The slippery jersey excuse! Funny

Henning12 said...

What does bates do after ND blows us out? Fire spaz or nothing? The first defining moment of his tenure and he will keep the spaz. Major questions to answer as bates appears to be having a difficult transition to the heights. The future is bleak.

Tim said...

That 2002 game was one of Spaz's shining moments as DC. "We will celebrate at the end of the game!" Considering his defense scored half our points and held ND to 7 on their home field, it really was a great effort.

And that was not too long after another one of his better moments: the 20-16 win over Georgia in the bowl game the previous year. Another great defensive effort leading to a big win over a ranked team.

Sad to think how far Spaz has fallen.

SaturdaysOnShea said...

I was a senior for the 2008 game where we shut them out. You could not have asked for a better game especially with Clausen throwing so many interceptions and Momah's punt block!

What made it even better, as a student, was the entire student section stayed behind for a solid half hour singing with the band. One of my best BC memories.

SectionKK said...

I've been to every BC-ND game since 2001, but the 2002 game stands out the most. I was a sophomore at BC that year and drove out with some friends for it. First, I remember telling my roommate we would win before I left and him telling me I was crazy. ND was 9-0, #4, and Ty Willingham was being treated like a god. That didn't last long.

We stayed in the dorms with a friend on Friday night and the arrogance and overconfidence was nauseating. Half of of the dorm room doors had the recent SI "RETURN TO GLORY" cover tacked to it. The scene was very different Saturday night.

Saturday morning, we walked around campus to check out the scene and, as many do, stopped at the grotto to say a prayer. As I was getting up from praying, an ND alum who looked like he was in his mid-70s said to me, "You better pray because you're going to need it today." Nice.

Our seats were in the lower end zone opposite the end where the BC fans were put. We were about nine rows off the field and I'll never forget the image of Josh Ott running towards us with the football in his hands to score that touchdown. Towards the end of the game, when it became clearer that we were going to win, the ND fans (mostly older alums) were actually very gracious. I guess they're not all bad.

EagleinNYC said...

The 93 game was my freshman year, and it still holds probably my all time greatest sports moment. Stayed on campus instead of heading home early for Thanksgiving, and it was just a surreal scene. The goalposts were torn down and placed at the front door of Gordon’s Mod. When the team got home that night, it was packed to welcome them back. Just unreal.

Then 94 happened and the scene at BC was even more insane. The storming of the field was amazing. Holtz was sooooo utterly p*ssed he kept running plays up until the final seconds. I remember hearing the stadium PA announcer trying to clear the field (as the we decided to rush it prior to the game being officially over, albeit only like 30 seconds left), and hearing him finally yell “BOYS AND GIRLS – THE GAME IS NOT OVER! CLEAR THE FIELD!). Because Lisping Lou wanted to run 1 last play. F him. And the scene that night in the mods was the craziest ive ever seen there. Boston PD there cruising around on bikes to break up the mobs. Pretty sure that night is the single reason BC sends a letter to freshman and sophs saying they are not allowed to hang out in the mods if they are underage.

I actually think we play our best game of the year this Sat night. The coaches all know they r toast, this is the Super Bowl for the players. Primetime national TV game. We go all out and knock them off in a close one!

blockparty said...

it wasnt the greatest of games, but in 07 when we were number 4? 5? in the country being led by matt ryan was memorable for me. took the RV out to south bend, went to a couple of the crappy bars "downtown". we won pretty easily, 27-14. walking out of the stadium winding down the concrete paths, there was not a notre dame fan in sight. everyone was screaming "WE ARE!" "BC!" or "SEVEN AND OH!" or "UNDEFEATED". Surrounded by others who were just as happy as I was. The drive home, we found out we were number 2 in the country. Was so awesome. Was so freaking awesome.

EL MIZ said...

in 04 fellow ATL commenter MUD and I were sitting amongst a bevy of locals (indiana rednecks who were ND fans...the worst type of nD fan) with a few other BC fans. the pile on after the Gonzalez touchdown was epic. ND fans were silenced.

does the Spaz era have any good memories? I'll take the past 4 years if we can storm the field and end the perfect season under the lights. GO EAGLES!!! PLAY TO WIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

luch said...

i've been to ND quite a few times and seeing ND lose at home never gets old. my best friend is a USC guy and we were on the sidelines for the "bush push" after leinart audibled and connected to jarrett on 4th and long to start the series.

however the GREEN JERSEY game was sweeeeeeeet. josh ott manned up that game. ND fans are so freaking smug and arrogant, like its their right to be good.

i also remember being at the ND pep rally in 1999, there were a few BC fans in the building and they made a little noise while bob davie was speaking. davie freaked out and turned around and yelled "and we're gonna kick their asses tomorrow!!". and of course they didnt...

Tim said...

Remember that ESPN Cold Pizza segment in 2007 with the sports editor from the Heights and his counterpart from the ND paper? Priceless. That ND kid was the world's biggest tool.

CatabEagle said...

Tim, you mean this video? This kid is the perfect example of every ND kid I knew growing up.

mmason said...

If Notre Dame sees BC as their little brother, doesn't that make them Fredo...and therefore we're Michael?
(thus nullifying that moronic Fredo Chant they do and that they think is so comical.)

Go Eagles!