Living The Dream

The first of quite a few tough love parenting talks came after Jake Golic got his initial high school report card. The marks weren't good and neither was the response from his parents Mike and Christine.

They preached to their son, if you want to play football at the University of Notre Dame, fulfill your dream, you're just not cutting it in the classroom.

"We were trying to tell Jake this is all inclusive," Mike Sr. said. "You have to get your grades in order. As he will tell you, there were multiple sit downs with his mother and I, especially his mother, saying hey listen it's not going to happen. No matter how good a football player you are, Notre Dame will look elsewhere. You're lucky 32 other teams are looking at you. You might have to go to one of them.

"There were hard conversations, but this semester he made the honor roll. put the work in, because that's where he always wanted to go."

It took awhile for the right situation to develop, but Jake Golic is now going to be living his life-long dream

Notre Dame contacted Golic's Northwest Catholic High (West Hartford, Conn.) head coach on Saturday with a message for him to get in touch with head coach Charlie Weis.

The 6-foot-5, 220-pound tight end gave Weis a call, and the Irish quickly landed their first commitment in the 2009 recruiting class.

"As soon as he said he was offering, I said I was 100 percent on board." Golic said.

"Just a feeling of disbelief in my entire body. I couldn't believe it was happening. It was something I was waiting for since I was a little kid."

This past season, Golic had 21 receptions for 410 yards and two touchdowns, helping his team reach the state playoffs. He held a written offer from Connecticut, and was receiving interest from several programs across the country.

But it was no secret. Everyone knew. If Notre Dame offered, Golic was headed to South Bend.

"The first time I took a trip out there (as a kid), I felt so right out there," Golic said. "It felt like the place to be. The tradition of Notre Dame, and our family tradition there, it just feels like a second home to me."

Golic's older brother Mike Jr. was the first commit in Notre Dame's 2008 class. Mike Sr. played defensive end/outside linebacker for the Irish from 1981-84. After a nine-year career in the NFL, Golic is now an analyst and morning radio show host for ESPN. Uncle Bob suited up at Notre Dame from 1975-78.

Golic came into the school year with a 2.6 GPA. He scored a 950 on the SAT, and was a bubble kid academically as far as Notre Dame was concerned. However, with improving grades, Golic got it done, and the Irish never wavered on him being their guy. Weis and company were courting several tight ends, but never offered one in hopes that Golic would eventually clear admissions.

"That is special to me, that they had the confidence to stick around as long as they did," Golic said. "That does mean something to me, quite a bit."

Golic was especially thankful towards his Mother.

"She was the one that really pushed me the hardest, and the one I have to thank the most," Golic said. "The one that kept me going when it didn't seem to be going too great."

Now things couldn't be better, and Golic will try and help recruit players to joining him in this class. He will be at the Blue-Gold game on April 19th, where Notre Dame will host several top prospects.

"Since my part is done, it's time to get other people on as well," Golic said of his next focus. "That and grades of course."


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