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FOOTBALL:No backing out of bet for Brady

Matt Puglisi | Thursday, September 15, 2005

Irish coach Charlie Weis was informed at Wednesday night’s press conference that former Michigan and current Patriot quarterback Tom Brady had, in fact, come through on his agreement to wear a Notre Dame hat in honor of the 17-10 Irish victory over the Wolverines Sunday at the Big House.

While Brady only wore the hat – backwards – for 20 seconds before tossing it to the ground during a Patriot press conference, Weis was anxious to see the visuals.

“Did we get a picture of that?” Weis said. “Is it online yet?”

Get the picture

After watching both high and lowlights from previous Notre Dame-Michigan games prior to battling the Wolverines, Weis used a different approach for Saturday’s home opener against Michigan State. The Spartans have won four consecutive games at Notre Dame Stadium and 11 overall – the most by any Irish opponent.

“We watched a 15-minute tape yesterday that I had made from NBC broadcasts from the last four times here,” Weis said. “It was four games worth of all bad. I didn’t have to say too much to them, because after 15 minutes of watching that tape, pictures tell better than words. There were a number of reasons that Michigan State has won the last four games here. It was ugly.”

Home field advantage

After opening the season with a pair of road games, the Irish finally return home for the first time in 2005. After a mediocre 3-3 home record last year, Weis hopes the Irish can return to the days when a game at Notre Dame Stadium almost always meant a victory.

“You need to, as a team, develop a temperament,” Weis said. “I don’t get into that ‘This is our house’ and all those commercials, but you need to develop a temperament that you’re not going to lose when you’re playing at home. I don’t think that temperament exists at this point until we start playing games.

“I’m hoping when this is all said and done, we have established a temperament that you’re going to have to be awfully good to beat us at our place.”

Practice makes perfect

While all coaches emphasize the important of practice, Weis takes it to a new level.

“[Practice] has a very big correlation to how you play,” Weis said. “That’s one of the things that’s different than people understand-the way this staff coaches, it’s very important that you take it from the practice field to the game field.

“I don’t believe that you just show up on game day and play. You know that saying, ‘He’s not a practice player, he’s a gamer?’ I don’t believe that philosophically. I believe that you practice hard and you prepare to play and practice has a direct correlation to actually playing in the game.”