*Warning: I understand that this might not be a great idea at the time. However, it needs to be done. If you are a Trojan or opposing fan, please do not comment as this is an emotional article containing zero stats or analysis, but rather a rant within the Notre Dame community. Thank you for respecting a fan in a state of defeat.
I am writing to you from my living room just 10 minutes after our latest loss with my heart in half and a broken window.
I'm tired. I'm angry, frustrated, exhausted, and emotionally beaten.
This loss sucks and it hurts more than even the one in 2005.
Two plays was all it took to rip the heart out of thousands of Notre Dame fans nationwide after Notre Dame found a way to sneak back into the game.
Beginning the game, the stadium was as loud as ever and you could see it in the player's eyes that they had the confidence to stay on the field with the Trojans.
To even further my excitement, Charlie Weis decided to allow Michael Floyd to dress and even participate in pregame warmups. My hopes had never been so high throughout my short yet football-rich life.
Standing in front of my television with friends around me, the kickoff began and my cheers began a long day.
After getting off to a decent start, the Irish fell in a deep hole.
My head fell into my hands and I could only imagine another blowout to add to Weis' resume. He stood on the sidelines almost motionless like a deer in headlights. I could almost see the tears in his eyes already.
Then, Jimmy Clausen entered through the tunnel and took over for the other No. 7.
The offensive line saw Clausen enter, and knew it was time to step it up. They did...and it worked beautifully.
The Irish crept back into the game and the stadium seemed as if it had hit the rewind button with students doing push-ups and the leprechaun leading the stadium in our favorite momentum chants.
At the Trojan four-yard line with 10 seconds to play, Clausen threw two incomplete passes as Carroll and his "classy team" began the celebration, and on the way, made sure they flexed to the crowd and shoved the Irish players on their way out.
My first rant: Pete Carroll is a great coach, but USC is the antithesis of what everything Notre Dame stands for.
Poor Robby Parris. Taylor Mays is a great player, but a dirty one.
Everson Griffen? Get over yourself.
Chris Galippo and Anthony McCoy.. don't get me started.
Play the game of football and take your win because you deserved it. There is no reason for the excess, because if you eliminated that part of your game, you would have won much easier.
Why is that necessary? Sportsmanship is the name of the game, gentlemen. Learn it.
Secondly, the Irish can play with almost anyone in the country.
One play away from taking the Gods themselves to overtime without the best receiver in the country for red-zone scenarios?
Give me Michael Floyd in that game and I give the Irish a victory.
Charlie Weis made second-half adjustments and showed me that he deserves at least another year with Clausen and company. If you think otherwise after this loss, I believe your very wrong.
The program missed their chance last year by not firing him. Live with your decisions.
Yes, he made some questionable calls, like running off 20 seconds at the end of the game. However, I applaud you today, Charlie (except for the third quarter).
I don't believe in moral losses. A loss is a loss and it hurts.
However, the season is not lost.
The team gets a chance to redeem themselves against year another rival in Boston College next week. The true heart of this team will come out next weekend after such a disheartening loss.
Do they go downhill in a repeat of 2008? Or do they learn from such a loss, run the table (which is very achievable) and make it to a BCS bowl where they get another chance at an elite team?
All game I had been receiving texts from friends and fans across the nation. Some examples:
"Have fun. USC 34, Notre Dame 3." Accurate.
"Your offensive line sucks. Clausen can't step up in the pocket and he throws like a chick on one foot. Your really are telling me he is under consideration for the Herschel?" Clausen: 2, rest of the country: 0.
"Only for Notre Dame would those calls be made." I'm surprised Snoop Dogg didn't make an appearance featuring Taylor Mays and pop a cap in Robby Parris.
"I can see you guys got some nice practice from your TOUGH schedule so far. Do you guys have a defense?" Purdue still doesn't count though, right?
I wanted this game for the team more than any other before it. Watching Gary Gray with tears running down his face and Clausen not even able to take his helmet off after the post-game handshake from Matt Barkley, I wanted to cry for the players myself.
As much as I wanted this game for the team, I wanted it for myself, too.
For the thousands of Notre Dame fans that have to constantly go through hell each and every day for liking this football team.
For supporting Charlie Weis, Jimmy Clausen, and Jack Swarbick on a daily basis.
For being a fan of a team in the spotlight.
The haters will keep loving to hate and we will be stuck dealing with them. Now all we can do is cross our fingers and hope for a 6-0 finish while taking that heat along the way until we finally get that signature win.
USC Fans (at least, most of the ones I know): Great win and congratulations. You guys played a great game and I am sorry you have to deal with the personal fouls, smack talking and show boating because you guys are nothing like your team.
Especially the guys here at Bleacher Report, thank you for your sportsmanship because even though were Notre Dame fans, we are still people and we appreciate it.