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Football and publicity

Observer Viewpoint | Monday, September 19, 2005

Never believe those who would minimize the importance of Notre Dame football to your broader education. In fact, the moments just prior to Saturday’s game provided all of you with a very important lesson: style is vastly more significant than substance.

As has already been widely remarked, Notre Dame, in contrast to most public and private universities and all other Catholic institutions of higher education of which I am aware, refused to admit or assist other schools’ students displaced by Hurricane Katrina. However, when it came to putting on a show for a national television audience, Notre Dame performed superbly: a moment of silence, a treacly prayer from the new president, a monetary collection extorted from the well-heeled. Bravo! It even provoked reflective commentary from the announcers!

Please note the key lesson here. Style – the image you present of yourself to others – matters far more than substance – what you actually believe and practice. Now this lesson may not appear on a quiz, but it may eventually get you that promotion to a bigger cubicle. So study hard!

Troy Feayalumnusclass of 1998, 2003Sept. 17