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Trojan love

Adam Llorens | Monday, April 11, 2011

It all started at 10:22 a.m. on Feb. 29, 1992 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

It was Leap Day in Los Angeles, and Kimberly Llorens had just given birth to her prodigy, Adam Llorens.

OK, so that lead may sound a tad haughty, but I’ll cut to the point of this column. One of the most important moments in an infant’s life is the first shirt put on his or her back.

For many of you, this shirt was perhaps colored blue and gold and featured the timeless “ND” interlocking emblem on the front.

This was not the case for me.

I come from “the dark side” as it is perhaps identified here on campus, for my father is an alumnus of the University of Southern California, and proud of it. And so, it would only be natural for his first and only son to wear the colors of cardinal and gold.

And so it began. I was an official member of the Trojan family and embraced every aspect of it.

As time progressed, I soon became a super fan of USC athletics, in particular the football squad, which was in the midst of one of their all-time pinnacles throughout my adolescent years.

In fact, some of my favorite childhood memories revolve around SC football. Among others, watching Carson Palmer and the Men of Troy destroy Iowa 38-17 in the 2002 Orange Bowl and idolizing Matt Leinart in his 2004 Heisman campaign as the boys beat up on Oklahoma in the BCS title game to win the national championship.

But none of these compared to the fascinating events of October 15, 2005 at Notre Dame Stadium.

Backed up against the wall, Leinart converted a pass to Dwayne Jarrett on a fourth-and-nine situation to put the Trojans deep into Irish territory late in the fourth quarter.

Then the improbable happened.

It was the only time I had ever prayed for a football play in my life.

“God, if there’s anything I ever have asked of you, please let SC score a touchdown here.”

Leinart answered my call, valiantly plunging his way into the end zone for a Trojan touchdown.

“Conquest” was ringing throughout the Llorens household.

Now, please don’t be offended by this column, for many of you are guilty of the same “crime.” I see plenty of students donning the gear of their hometown collegiate team, schools that even perhaps their parents attended, yet you do not receive ridicule for your blasphemous attire choices.

I am simply here to state that for the rest of my life, a sliver of cardinal and gold blood will always circulate through my system.

Alongside Michael, another Trojan friend of mine in Knott, it is safe to say that we feel welcomed into the Notre Dame family.

We just want our family to appreciate our affection for Traveler and Tommy Trojan.

So don’t judge. Respect the team I spent the first 18 years of my life adoring.

And, as always, Fight On ND.

The views expressed in this Inside Column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

Contact Adam Llorens at allorens@nd.edu