Ever since I first saw it on the mouldering screen of the Snite’s cinema, I have been enamored of Kenneth Branagh’s version of the immortal Band of Brothers speech. For what it’s worth, I think it better done, and better shot, than Sir Laurence Olivier’s version from 1944. But think of what those words must have meant to an audience in England straining at the fetters of bombings and deprivations under the German’s guns. To be among those chosen to return to France, to sail across the same Channel as Harry’s host centuries before, perhaps to one day occupy a field that would be forever England.
This Saturday marks a moment of destiny of sorts for Brian Kelly’s Irish as they face Florida State’s Seminoles. Amid the whirl of now-hyperbolic meaning given to the game, a dichotomy of good versus evil set up by Jameis Winston’s presence on the field and Florida State’s failure to do anything about it, I think it fair to point out that with the loss of Russell, Daniels, Williams, and Collinsworth, Notre Dame is not exactly walking into the game at full-strength.
I don’t think that Jameis should play. But that’s just me. That the ‘Noles reinstated their then-tofore suspended linebacker, Matthew Thomas, adds a karmic insult to Collinsworth’s injury. FSU gets stronger because it wants to, while the Irish step into the ring, having tied a hand behind its collective back. To shake up the world.
Attrition is part of the game and great teams deal with it. Notre Dame’s losses, though, are largely self-inflicted. It’s amazing to me that we are 6-0 at this point. Like in 2012, we’re winning games. Sometimes we do it comprehensively (Michigan) and sometimes we just kind of YOLO-it (UNC). I don’t know that having Daniels to throw to would have prevented any of Golson’s turnovers, but I wonder how much better we would be at this point.
Our secondary is now on empty. If they were a record and it were 1977, they’d be Running on Empty. How much more confident would you be if we had Russell back there? Wasn’t this the year Ishaq was going to match his 4:30 a.m. potential?
Regardless, if it’s not wrong to want Jameis to play, it’s not wrong to wish but one man more.
Hating Hurricanes Since 1990.
Bayou Irish is a Jersey boy and Double Domer who fell under New Orleans' spell in 1995. He's been through Katrina and fourteen years in the Coast Guard, so we cut him some slack, mostly in the form of HLS-subsidized sazeracs. But, when he's not face down on the bar and communing with the ghosts of Faulkner and Capote at the Carousel Bar in the Hotel Monteleone, he's our man in SEC-land, doing his best to convince everyone around him that Graduation Success Rate is a better indicator of success than the number of MNC's won in the last five years.
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