"Irish Creed" is in no way affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by the University of Notre Dame

Aug 3, 2010

Guest Post: Introducing IrishCC

Although quite some time has passed since the historic event, Irish Creed could not let the induction of Tim Brown into the College Football Hall of Fame pass by without some recognition (especially since he made all of our Top Ten Favorite Football Players of All Time lists). We therefore reached out to someone who could give us an insider's look into the eventful weekend. Introducing guest author, Notre Dame cheerleader, and emergency Fighting Irish Leprechaun, IrishCC:

On Saturday, July 17, Notre Dame’s most recent Heisman Trophy winner, Tim Brown, was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, IN. I had the honor of serving as the Fighting Irish Leprechaun for the Hall of Fame parade and induction ceremonies. I consider it a great honor that Irish Creed has asked me to write a guest-piece about my experience at the event, and I would like to share 5 lessons that I took away from it.

1. South Bend is the rightful home of the College Football Hall of Fame:

A better weekend could not have been found in South Bend. Notre Dame alum Mike Golic emceed the event during a gorgeous summer Saturday. On stage, Tim Brown spoke of how he was glad to be back in South Bend. It is wonderful that he was given the chance to be inducted into the Hall of Fame in the city where he played his college ball. It certainly added an extra sentimental factor to the weekend.
Together, the ceremony and parade made up an amazing experience. The cheerleaders and I marched through the streets of South Bend leading onlookers in various ND cheers. It was exciting to see thousands of people lining the streets and cheering as the inductees went by. Fans were literally running up to the floats to high-five or shake hands with their football heroes. The energy was simply electrifying. South Bend will always be home to not only the most legendary football program in the nation, but a population of passionate and spirited college football fans. It is only fitting that the Hall of Fame should stay in such a football town.

2. Tim Brown is certainly one of the most amazing players to have ever played the game:

When he first came to Notre Dame, Brown set the freshman school record for receptions. Furthermore, he still holds the school record for all-purpose yards, which he set with 1,937 during his junior year. During his time at Notre Dame, he was affectionately referred to as ‘Touchdown Timmy.” Twice a member of the College Football All-America Team, he was also the first wide receiver to win the Heisman Trophy. Averaging paydirt for every 11.4 catches, he bagged 12 receiving TDs while racking up 2,493 receiving yards. Upon becoming the 6th overall pick in the 1988 NFL Draft, Brown began his prolific NFL career with the Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders. During his 17-year career, he earned the title of "Mr. Raider" due to his 9 Pro-Bowl appearances and his prolific accomplishments both on and off the field. He now ranks second all-time in the NFL record book for receiving yards and third in both receptions and catches. (Not bad for a guy who forgot his helmet as he took the field for the first time at Notre Dame, only to find it in time for the opening kickoff which he fumbled away).

3. Notre Dame students have always been, are, and will forever continue to be amazing people:

The reason I had the privilege of serving as the Fighting Irish Leprechaun during this event is due to the fact that our current Leprechaun is in Africa on a mission trip. His story is just one example of the moral integrity and well-roundedness of the Notre Dame student body. Not only is this student serving as the face of the University, but he is also spending his summer using his talents to better the lives of individuals in third-world countries. This just goes to show the type of students found at the University of Notre Dame, students with dignity and character that actually believe they can and will change the world.

4. Ohio State travels well, but their mascot is overrated:

Chris Spielman, former outstanding linebacker from Ohio State, was also inducted into the Hall of Fame this year. I must admit that I was blown away when I realized there were more fans for Spielman than there were for almost every other inductee combined. As a back-to-back first team All-American and winner of the Lombardi Award in 1987, Spielman was truly a phenomenal force on Ohio State’s defense. Stats and numbers aside, what impressed me most about Spielman was his incredible commitment to breast cancer research. Spielman’s wife defeated four bouts of breast cancer before ultimately losing her battle in the fifth round. During and after her struggle, Chris has shown tremendous dedication to finding a cure and supporting others in her position. For more information regarding Spielman’s story, or to learn more about breast cancer research, please visit www.chrisspielman.com.

The weekend couldn’t end without a little Midwest rivalry, however. After suffering an embarrassing defeat in a race against last year's extremely athletic, talented, and good-looking Leprechaun at the 2009 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, Ohio State’s mascot had it out for me at this year’s event. Feeling overconfident due to the huge crowds of Ohio State fans, Brutus the Buckeye challenged me to a rematch. Although he appeared to be an unbeatable and threatening opponent, standing well over 6 feet tall with every muscle rippling in his foam suit, I quickly found out that he was lacking in speed. Besides, I had the luck of the Irish on my side. Two steps into the race, and I had him beat. Finishing the race running backwards, urging him to catch me, I crossed the finish line victorious. Admittedly, it must be difficult to run while wearing a goofy foam suit. Seeing Brutus and the other mascots at the event made me wonder why so few schools represent themselves with actual students without foam heads. As a mascot, it is an honor and a privilege to actually speak and interact with fans. For that reason, I agree with former leprechaun and Irish Creed writer when he claims the Fighting Irish Leprechaun to be “King of all Mascots."

5. Coach Kelly has the ability to change the face of Notre Dame football forever:

While on stage, Brown struck the infamous Heisman pose after a crowd of Fighting Irish fans urged him to do so. Seeing this caused my spirit to be elated because I am certain that Coach Kelly will soon have one of his players striking the pose upon winning the historic trophy. I make this bold claim because of the remarkable similarities between Coach Kelly and Coach Holtz. Both men possess a fiery passion for the game, both know how to truly teach the game, and both have proven that they can mold high school boys into men, men who are not only great football players, but also gentlemen and scholars. I believe that Coach Kelly has the ability to revive Notre Dame’s football program into one that is a legitimate national contender every year. By doing so, it is only a matter of time before he molds one of his players into a Heisman Trophy winner.

Finally, I would like to end by bringing everything back to Tim Brown. There is no doubt that he ranks as one of the most elite athletes to have ever played college or professional football. It is also clear that his time at Notre Dame undoubtedly transformed him into the confident NFL player he became. Not only does his legacy serve as a reminder of what makes Notre Dame great, but it may provide a glimpse into the future at the type of RKGs that will be playing for the Fighting Irish under the leadership of Coach Kelly.

Preparing to race Brutus in 2009
At the starting line
Burning Brutus

(Photos courtesy of Lighthouse Imaging)

1 comment:

2012 Notre Dame Football Schedule

2012 Notre Dame Football Schedule
DateOpponent / EventLocationTime / Result
09/01/12vs. Navy Dublin, IrelandW, 50-10
09/08/12vs. PurdontNotre Dame, Ind.W, 20-17
09/15/12at SpartyEast Lansing, Mich.W, 20-3
09/22/12vs. SkunkbearsNotre Dame, Ind.W, 13-6
Shamrock Series
10/06/12vs. Da UChicago, Ill.W, 41-3
10/13/12vs. TreesNotre Dame, Ind.W, 20-13 (OT)
10/20/12vs. BYU Notre Dame, Ind.W, 17-14
10/27/12at Oklahoma Norman, Okla.W, 30-13
11/03/12vs. Pittsburgh Notre Dame, Ind.W, 29-26 (3OT)
11/10/12at Backup College Chestnut Hill, Mass.W, 21-6
11/17/12vs. Fake Worest Notre Dame, Ind.W, 38-0
11/24/12at U$C Los Angeles, Calif.W, 22-13
1/7/13vs. AlabamaBCS CHAMPIONSHIP
(Miami, Florida)
L, :(