To be fair, you could insert a lot of things at the end of the above sentence. “Going to Notre Dame” alone would certainly be one of them as I distinctly remember telling my mother that my application would be a waste of money as I was certain ND would reject me.
“Having a weekly radio show in DFW” certainly applies as well. That still boggles my mind, especially when I trace back the sequence of incredibly fortunate events that got me to that point. I could trace that back to taking chance to met a bunch of young alumni strangers in a kickball league here in Dallas. If I wanted to, I could go back even further and trace back even more events that led me to that point.
As I hit the big 3-0 this Sunday, I certainly realize, in the grand scheme of things, I’m still a young pup. As such, I don’t pretend to have loads of wisdom at my young age, but if there is one thing that I’ve learned it’s that nothing goes to plan.
To be more accurate: my plan.
I was certain that my college career would be centered around a baseball scholarship of some kind and hopefully I could finally prove myself and squeeze into the minor leagues. I decided to stop at Notre Dame on my way to a paid visit to DePaw University, a small D3 school that wanted me to play baseball for them (and had an “academic” scholarship because there are no athletic schollies in D3). I never set foot on DePaw’s campus nor ever had a chance to talk to the baseball coach face-to-face. Instead, he received a voicemail that I wanted to cancel my visit and had decided to go to school elsewhere.
I was certain that I would never met my future wife in a bar. Not only did that happen, but I called her a lesbian in the process. I’m still not sure how that worked, considering she was doing everything in her power to avoid talking to me and any other guy there to begin with, but it did. Now, we love watching the looks on people’s faces as we tell the story of how we met. Tomorrow, during my 30th birthday party, we will find out if our first child is a boy or girl.
I’m both excited and scared at the same time about fatherhood. Strangely enough, the one thing providing me comfort is the one that same truth that I’ve stated above: nothing will go according to my plan. I’ve read books, received loads of advice from friends who are parents, my own parents, and even Twitter followers whom are parents. In the end, there is going to be a point in which I have a crying, screaming human in my arms and, in a sleep-deprived state, I will simply be at a loss for what to do. Yet somehow, that kid will survive as I learn this parenting thing on the fly, just as my father did with me.
To bring this all back around to football, this is now the lens through which I view signing day these days. It’s completely different than how I viewed things when Ty or Weis were around, but that’s not just because I’ve gotten older, but because of the way Brain Kelly has built this program. It hasn’t been perfect and, much like a new father, he’s trying to figure out exactly what does and doesn’t work in terms of recruiting under the shadow of the Golden Dome.
He’s landed some five-star studs, only to watch them head elsewhere. He’s had some last minute defections. He’s had holes in some of his recruiting classes. Yet this season he snagged every verbal request and even flipped a couple people in Notre Dame’s favor.
Their class sits just outside the top ten in pretty much every ranking I’ve seen, just as they did last year. There are no five-star signees and all of us would feel a lot better if they snagged another safety. So it’s all certainly far from perfect, which is perhaps why Kelly stated in his presser that he’s looking to add some fifth-year transfers.
Yet, somehow in the big picture, we know that the Irish will fill all 85 scholarship positions. Last season was one of the first times that ND did that, but the whole Frozen Five thing happened and then the injury bug got us further away from fulfilling the code of 85. Should all go smoothly, Notre Dame could enter 2015 with a full 85 that includes just about all of 2014’s starters returning, a QB stable with 4 guys that could start at just about any FBS program, and a potential new Four Horseman in the backfield with the eldest players being juniors.
Yes, I’ve certainly jinxed everything now. But then again, nothing ever goes according to plan, and I’m sure Brian Kelly is no exception to that rule.
FYI, the Friday Roundup will now be devoid of ND links. HLS’ new “signee”, andrewwinn, is doing a ND focused Roundup every morning at 8am ET. Be sure to check it out. This means the Roundup will be a mid-morning/lunchtime post going forward.
College Gameday is getting a shakeup. And, no, Lee Corso isn’t the one departing.
A local radio station here loves to look at five-star busts on signing day. That’s incredibly disingenuous. The recruiting rankings certainly matter and you need to hovering around the top consistently to be good.
The College Football Playoff just gave the NFL and ESPN the finger. As we discussed last week, the NFL wanted the New Year’s Eve games to move because it interfered with their precious Thursday Night Football and ESPN was on board too. But that ain’t happening and I’m so happy to be wrong.
And now your moment of Nix… Filed under “the most Southern Cal thing ever”, Iman Marshall announced his signing to the Trojans via music video. I want to note, this happen in a recruiting class that had Snoop Dogg’s son and this was the only signing via music video (by the way, Snoop’s kid is going to UCLA).
So last week, I thought I was cleaning my fridge out of Coors Light with the Super Bowl as my excuse for doing so. Then, I discovered that the grocery store I shop at is now stocking Revolver’s Blood & Honey as an early birthday gift to me. Two things here: (1) RIP, my liver and (2) you bet your ass I’m drinking way more of that deliciously dangerous strong brew during my birthday party.
For those of y’all well outside the distribution area (likely most of you), simply sub in your favorite wheat ale that is way too strong for its own good.