Eddie, is a sports-loving man himself, who once considered a boxing career. He
won 16 of 17 bouts as an amateur but gave it up because, as he says, "you
can wind up on Goofy Street." The father has seen three Notre Dame games,
sitting proudly but worriedly in the stands, fearing injury. "He'll see a
lot of mountains of men before he's through," says the father, "and
I'll have to try to act like I'm not worried about it."
was not easily recruited by Notre Dame. His first choice was Penn State, and
his second was Michigan State, even though he had an older brother, Pete, who
had gone to South Bend on a part-scholarship for track and field. Penn State
will tell you that Hanratty's grades didn't measure up, but Notre Dame will
tell you that Ray, also a top recruiter, was the final persuading factor.
Hanratty confesses the same.
Terry Hanratty is
polite, bewildered, mannerly. He says, "I've just been trying to beat out
Coley O'Brien for quarterback, and now all this happens." But that's not
all he says. After the spectacular day against Purdue when he completed 16
passes for 304 yards and three touchdowns, Hanratty was named Midwest Back of
the Week--not the biggest deal in the world. But Hanratty was called into
Valdiserri's office and told of the honor, nonetheless. The quarterback, who
has sharp features in a narrow face and a black crew cut that lies flat, looked
stunned. After a pause he said slowly, "Boy, I never thought it would all
end up like this."
Hanratty is like
that. So is Seymour. And before the two of them are through, Notre Dame may
have to erect a couple more statues.
It's been more
than three decades since Parseghian roamed the Notre Dame sideline, but now the
legendary coach is leading an even more important team. Parseghian, 83, serves
as the national spokesperson for the Ara Parseghian Medical Research
Foundation, a nonprofit organization he helped found in 1994 to help find a
cure for Niemann-Pick Type C disease, a genetic pediatric neurodegenerative
disorder that causes progressive deterioration of the nervous system. The
disease has claimed the lives of his three youngest grandchildren.
When he's not
working for the foundation, Parseghian makes time to play golf three times a
week. Parseghian, who compiled a 95-17-4 record and an .836 winning percentage
and guided Notre Dame to national championships in 1966 and '73 during his
11-year tenure as coach, has holed an astounding six aces since retiring from
football in '74, including three on the same hole at the South Bend Country
Club. He discovered the game "back in the Depression days working as a
caddie," he says. Though he's lefthanded, all six of Parseghian's aces have
come righthanded. "There were no lefthanded clubs back then, so I ended up
playing righthanded," Parseghian says. Seems like the luck of the Irish is
still with the old coach.