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Notre Dame respects opponents

Letter to the Editor | Friday, September 22, 2006

This is a brief response to Pat O’Brien’s Letter to the Editor (“Limit visitor’s tribute to pre-game,” Sept. 20). As a member of the Band of the Fighting Irish, I stand by our tradition of playing the opponent’s fight song at the end of a game. At Notre Dame, we do not leave all niceties at the door. We do not walk out of the stadium and rub a loss in anyone’s face or throw insults at them if they win. We, the band, student body, and everyone associated with Notre Dame welcome all visitors to our home and give them the full respect due to them.

It’s not “You’re welcome to come here as long as we still win;” it’s “Welcome to Notre Dame – we hope you enjoy your whole stay here and thank you for coming.”

Notre Dame isn’t about hating your opponents or trying to humiliate them or their fans in any way. It is about respecting others, respecting the game of football, and being gracious in victory or defeat. Playing their fight song embodies this respect and welcoming nature. In victory, playing the other school’s song is a farewell and appreciation for coming out. In defeat, yes, it sickened me inside to play “The Victors” after getting drubbed by Michigan, but at the same time it reminded me of what we’re about and why we are here – I was still proud to be a part of the Notre Dame Family as I played that song. Michigan won handily and I tip my cap to them. But rest assured I will cheer, yell and play all the louder next time around.

John Cogill


Band of the Fighting Irish

Sept. 20