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NOTRE DAME: From Rockne to Parseghian by Francis Wallace

NOTRE DAME: From Rockne to Parseghian


Pub Date: Sept. 23rd, 1966
Publisher: McKay

Wallace recapitulates and defines the contributions and styles of Notre Dame's last seven football coaches, and offers his explanation of Notre Dame's decline on the gridiron. If he goes easy (but not too easy) on today's Ara Parseghian, it's because Parseghian has only had two seasons to prove himself (one good, one middling). Also, coaches don't build a team a year but over two, three and four years, while constantly working younger players into experienced players and while solidifying strategy. Rockne's career, both as player and coach, was fabulous in that he never had a losing season in twenty years and that as coach for 13 years he had five undefeated seasons. He was a modest, gentle man who could flare up like a blowtorch and blister his listeners. After his death, the team fell to Hunk Anderson's coaching, a Rockne alumnus. Though Anderson did well at times, he was cautious and Notre Dame began to learn to lose, instead of fearing that they might lose. Elmer Layden had brilliant moments but resigned for more money. Then Frank Leahy ran up 39 victories in a row until... A difficult book done frankly and intimately.