This weekend could be the most beautiful sight these eyes have ever seen!

Posted: October 14, 2014 by jmklee in Uncategorized

This week is one of those weeks that I dream about.  One of those weeks that the moons and stars align to set up one of those perfect college football days.  I am a rare bird, one that loves Saturday college football more than Sunday NFL.  A bird that loves Kentucky football but grew up with Catholic friends and learned to love Notre Dame at an early age also.  So when this Saturday’s TV schedule was released I started to get that tingle a kid gets when he sees there is a 100% chance for snow on Christmas.  Catholics vs. Criminoles and the Cats in Death Valley, both primetime games under the lights.  As my friend Danny would say to start wedding receptions, LET’S GET IT ON!

Let’s start with the Cats because as excited as I am about the game to me it is a win win as long as they keep it close and compete.  This is a team that I thought was a year away.  Mark Stoops has come in and changed the culture, recruited like no one ever in the Commonwealth and made believers out of a state of basketball fans.  Now I did think the Cats would go 7-5 this year but I sure didn’t think they would be 5-1 and have a long but realistic shot of winning the SEC East this year.  There is every reason to think that Kentucky is going to travel down to the bayou and take one on the chin but when these two teams meet crazy things happen.  Good and bad so you just never know what to expect.

The LSU Bluegrass Miracle

 

The best UK football win of my lifetime against #1 LSU

 

If Kentucky is able to go down to LSU and pull off another upset for the ages then they will set up a battle of two SEC leaders.  Kentucky in the East and the #1 team in the West and the nation in Mississippi State.  There is a rumor floating around that if Kentucky does win Saturday night that College Gameday will make a trip to Lexington next weekend.  Wow.  Just think about that one.  If someone would have told me there was even discussions at ESPN about bringing Gameday to Kentucky for the Miss St. game I would have told you to have another.  Well let me stop right there and not get ahead of myself and just enjoy this one.

 

Now to what should be the game of the year for the Irish.  

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Let me set the scene for the last time I was as hyped up for a ND vs. FSU match-up.  The year was 1993.  Notre Dame was #2 in the polls while Florida St. was #1.  Rudy had just been released in theaters. (I cried in the theater watching it)  FSU had a Heisman trophy quarterback in Charlie Ward.  College Gameday took its first ever campus visit to cover the “Game of the Century”.  Eight guys plus myself climbed into an RV that Friday afternoon and took the pilgrimage to South Bend to partake in a weekend of football and debauchery that none of us will ever forget.  (I’m so glad that was an age before phones with cameras and social media)  One of the guys went to Walmart and bought a TV so we could watch the game from the tailgate lot only to box that thing up and return it after the game.  He would yell at anyone that came within 10 feet of the box fearful someone would jump on it and crush it.  I might have jumped off the top of the top of the RV, twice for no reason at all.  I remember waking up and crawling out of the RV at daybreak Saturday morning.  There was a mist in the air and the campus was still asleep for the most part.  There was an RV not to far away from us that was full of FSU fans that had made the trip up from Florida.  Within the first 10 minutes of their RV pulling up the night before we had stolen the Florida St. flag flying high atop the vehicle and I might have worn it around like a cape to taunt them so I don’t think they were big fans of ours to begin with but that morning we took all doubt out of play.  Again the RV lot had a calm before the storm feel to it.  The sun was burning off the morning fog and you could smell the brewing coffee over the stale beer from the night before.  One the back windows of the FSU RV had the saying “Stew the Irish” soaped along with some other saying.  One of the older gentlemen from their camp was also up and making coffee when my friend that sleeps with his eyes open (true story, I thought he was dead) came stumbling out of our RV to see the guy and noticed what was was written on the back window.  So he did what any Irish fan would have done that had just stopped drinking a couple hours early, he yelled about as loud as one could yell at that time of the morning, Stew you, you old F*CK!  Needless to say the old guy made a wise choice and went back into his RV.  Now I tell you that story because well it’s a great story and because it was the last time I was this excited looking forward toward a regular season Notre Dame game.

Now I know the Irish played for a National Title two years ago but I never thought during that year they truly had a chance to beat Alabama or any other them they might meet in the title game.  This year though, this team could beat anyone out there and would have a legitimate shot to win it all if they get into the four team playoff.  If the Irish can win Saturday they will control their own destiny and will be favored in all of their remaining games down the stretch.

To get you ready for the game here is a look back at that wonderful day in ’93.

First the full NBC intro

 

The full game

 

I don’t know if either one of my teams will be able to go on the road and pull out victories but it is weekends like this one that makes college football so much better than the NFL.  I just need to make sure the refrigerator is full, the favorite sweatshirt is clean and I prepare the family for what might happen go down if the Cats and Irish pull off the daily double.  Sweet Jesus, it could be a wild night.

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