We’ll get to the (fantastic) Citrus Bowl tweets in a moment but first, a moment of silence.
As Tex pointed out recently, this will be our final #HLSrecap installment. I hope this news doesn’t rob you of yesterday’s joy (after all, this isn’t Nautica sweatpants from the UP Mall), but allow me to walk down memory lane for a moment as we consider the illustrious history of #HLSrecap (no one but me would use this adjective). I promise we’ll get to the Citrus Bowl eventually.
Some time back in 2011-2012 I noticed ND fans gravitating toward Twitter as a real-time game discussion platform and thought, “Huh. I wonder if a collective fan voice can do something for ND Football that broadcast announcers cannot.” After all, we ND fans recall the heady days of complaining about Tom Hammond (pun DEFINITELY intended), and our families/friends/loved ones grew bored with us diagramming the Charlie Weis Screen Play Offense in the kitchen during commercials. Hypothetically.
So I asked the HLS-Powers-That-Were if I could come aboard for Brian Kelly’s 2012 season and flesh out this Twitter experiment. Foolishly, they said yes and #HLSrecap was born in Dublin for the ND-Navy game. Some of my favorites, in no particular order:
- 2012 USC – the game that capped an undefeated season
- 2012 Pitt – a 3OT thriller that drained everyone’s cell phone batteries and prescription medication reserves
- 2014 Michigan – a shutout win for the ages
From there, I tested how the twitter format functioned apart from fall Saturdays, with mixed success. We lost our minds when the Shamrock Series clean whites were unveiled, we trolled our own fanbase as new Stadium renderings were announced, and when we realized that ND fans on Twitter loved competition, we (with @andrewwinn’s help) tallied every #HLSrecap tweet ever and released a weekly Top-25, and gave away whiskey for good tweets. We found some time to be clever at the expense of other fanbases, like the time Mississippi State posted every hashtagged tweet to their Jumbotron regardless of content, or when Boston College asked Twitter for suggestions on naming their new mascot. Largely, our finest work was directed inward, when ND’s social media folks asked for submissions for Brian Kelly’s weekly radio show…or when offseason suspensions beget the ND Fan’s Stages of Grief. In all cases, the #NDtwitterati was happy to oblige.
We even experimented with a March Madness-style bracket to crown the season’s best tweet, with the winners posted below (featuring, as it turns out, voting shenanigans that would foreshadow the 2016 Presidential race).
Notre Dame tackles like Patrick Swayze in Ghost. Or like Patrick Swayze now. Like both.
— Ramzy Nasrallah (@ramzy) September 8, 2013
What though the odds be great or small, we're gonna need some hard alcohol.
— bridget (@bridgetgoirish) September 26, 2015
We lost many brave souls these past several years, from Oak (not dead, just off Twitter) to Poot (the rare distinction of getting blocked from NDfootball’s official Twitter *and* by the HLS Editorial Board), and still others to parenthood or other Real Life Commitments (here’s where yours truly falls). Numerous staff members have grabbed the #HLSrecap Banner to keep it going, and countless tweeps have chipped in as well. One of the dearly departed, Fake Swarbrick, has agreed to return briefly to say a few words:
As I sit here retired and alone in the Brick Cave, where at one time shots of whisky were served as freely as shots of penicillin, I was deeply saddened to learn of the death of #HLSrecap. It’s 2018 and we can have a jumbotron but not this. What a world.Of all the things to come along and kill the Recap, “tech issues” would have been at the bottom of my list. Like most of you, I naturally assumed we’d all eventually run out of jokes about #NDFBIsDeterminedToKillMe. Leave it to the most neurotic fan base in all of college football to keep coming up with alcohol-fueled zingers season after season.And it was a hell of a run. For years #HLSrecap was required reading after every major Notre Dame event, usually football, and was the place to get noticed if you were an attention-starved fan with a Twitter handle. It can rightly be said #HLSrecap birthed the #NDtwitterati, for better or for worse. You know who you are.If anyone cares about what your humble Director of Athletics has been up to it’s pretty much the same as before. I’m still trying to get Frazier back on NBC, and I return Jim Delany’s calls only when I know he’s unavailable. Being a dick to that guy never gets old.Thank you Elvis and the entire HLS crew for all of the hard work! One last time, especially after an Irish bowl win, permit me to grant each of you #VictorySex.
As we mentioned earlier, Storify, the platform that houses every #HLSrecap, is shutting down in May. If you haven’t guessed by now, we’re taking the Citrus Bowl opportunity to try and crash their servers one final time (as we’ve done so many times previously). The good people at Storify tech support have always been responsive, and they’ve told me they look forward to new installments with a mixture of glee and dread. My goal has always been to edit for humor, PG-13 language, and length, but for the last dance everything stays in. MAXIMUM INCLUSION PLAY ALL THE SENIORS LET’S RIDE.
We’re wrapping up the #HLSrecap Era with a 21-17 Irish victory over LSU in dramatic fashion. Brevity filter: off. Language filter: off. Fun conclusion: ON.