Weekend Tips

Well, it's time for the Notre Dame home opener – that perpetually blue-skied weekend when the tranquil, pastoral ND campus comes a little closer to resembling a major rock concert, only without the hallucinogenic drugs, flashing females and roadies.

The fact that the Irish are 1-0, and not coming off a crushing road loss to BYU, Nebraska or, I don't know, [insert any Davie or Willingham road loss here], only adds to the excitement of this weekend.

The fact that the opponent is PSU, the 2006 Orange Bowl winner led by a Screech look-alike at quarterback who bears a tattoo around his biceps matching – no joke – similar ink worn by his father, should only cause Irish fans even greater excitement.

Many of the players on this Irish squad have a history of inspiring poor play by an opposing pocket passer with similarly silly body art on his arms – see Notre Dame's victories over Michigan in 2004 and 2005. I expect the same tattooed opposing QB-defeating prowess to be with Abiamiri, Landri, Laws and [weakside defensive end to be named later] this Saturday. That's enough for me to predict an ND victory.

What should you do this weekend? If you don't have a ticket to the game but are within driving distance, I suggest making a trip to campus. Help turn the place into a zoo, and, by all means, help inspire your fellow tailgaters to new levels of consumption.

Coach Weis wants the team to take its play to the next level: it stands to reason that he wants you to take your Irish fanship – which includes tailgating excesses – to the next level as well. How can you expect Quinn to improve on his performance in the opener if you are unwilling to fight through a hangover to crack open that 7:30 a.m. beer? How can you expect the defensive line to produce consistent push up the middle if you let a minor case of acid reflux keep you from downing that seventh brat?

So you don't have a ticket? Ducats may currently cost more than laser tattoo removal, but don't let that concern you. If I have learned anything in the first month of law school, it's that there is actually a federal statute that allows any well-intentioned Notre Dame fan to take a ticket, by force, from a fan of the opposing team – without any penalty. It's called The Patriot Act. Read it.

Should you find yourself without a Penn State fan to rob, there are plenty of places on and off campus to watch the game with fellow Irish fans and the many Penn State fans who did not make it into the stadium. This may prove to be the next best thing to being seated within the Penn State sections of the stadium: there will be few more enjoyable acts than shamelessly taunting Nittany Lions as Notre Dame pulls away in the second half.

All in all, it should be a very enjoyable weekend for an ND fan to be in South Bend. Here are a few recommended activities outside of the standard football weekend plan:

• If you see someone who appears to be a recruit being taken around campus in a golf cart, follow the cart and scream "Arrelious! Arrelious!"* It should really make a good impression on all the recruits.

• Pants a member of the excise police task force that patrols the parking lots trying to ensure that no actual "fun" takes place **

• If you make it into the stadium, encourage those around you to make some noise. Rattling Screech into launching cannon shots right at ND defensive backs will go a long way toward ensuring an ND victory. Rumor has it that Bill Diedrick's favorite lil' passer doesn't have the intelligence of, say, the current ND quarterback, whom Diedrick, by the way, hoped Morelli would supplant. If the stadium gets loud enough, he may simply become overwhelmed and start screaming "Loud noises!"

These are just a few guidelines. I'm out of time, as I have to pack the car to strike out for ND tomorrow morning. Enjoy the game this Saturday, and remember, college football – even big games during seasons with high expectations – is supposed to be fun, not just nervous vomit-inducing. And, if you happen to have an extra ticket, look for me – I'll be the guy with the navy blue "Tradition" shirt on, drinking a beer.

* In no way do I actually recommend than anyone over the age of three do this.
** If you plan to do this, please inform me beforehand, as I will purchase the ticket you will likely be unable to use due to a visit to the South Bend jail.

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