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Cheering until the end

Editorial Board | Friday, December 3, 2010

So here we are, at what has become our favorite weekend of the year. Football season is over, and we can finally relax, decompress from a season of disappointment and spend our Saturdays doing something productive, like this ever-increasing pile of homework.

Wait, we’re not?

This hasn’t happened before. We aren’t disheartened at all. We’re — dare we say it? — excited.

For the first time since nearly all current Notre Dame students have been here, the football season did not come to a screeching halt, nor did it limp to the finish. It won, and won again, and won again.

Not only that, but the rest of Irish athletics are winning, too, and our enthusiasm is carrying over.

So much for getting that theology paper done this weekend.

Instead, we’ll be watching our women’s soccer team face Ohio State today in the College Cup semifinals and hopefully again on Sunday to try for the championship that has eluded them for the past four years.

We’ll be attending or at least watching as our No. 16 women’s basketball team takes on Purdue Sunday afternoon on national television, a 10-year anniversary of the season that the two programs battled for (and Notre Dame won) a national title.

As we move into the last week of classes and study days, we still won’t find the sweet relief of athletic department depression. We’re just going to get even more distracted.

Will we be doing a group project Wednesday night? No, we’ll be eating buffalo wings and watching our No. 25 men’s basketball team, who at 8-0 have won more Div. 1 games than any team in the country, as they play Kentucky at Freedom Hall.

Then comes the weekend, when the No. 10 hockey team plays two games at home against Northern Michigan. We’ll be there.

Saturday night, the perfect time to bunker down with all of these organic chemistry textbooks, will see the men’s basketball team taking on Gonzaga at home. Who would miss that?

Notre Dame games aren’t everything we have to look forward to for a study break, though.

Tomorrow, we’ll be playing basketball and hanging out with the men’s basketball and lacrosse teams at the Stand for Sudan rally — because maybe Notre Dame athletics are becoming relevant again, in more than just rankings.

Then comes Sunday, when we find out whether the football team will be playing in Orlando, El Paso, San Diego or some other warm, post-Christmas destination come bowl season.

Do you think students can afford airplane tickets to get to that game, athletic department? Of course not. But they’ll find a way — one that probably involves more time working at Sbarro and less time working on problem sets during finals week.

Our grades may suffer as we cheer for the Irish or spend massive amounts of time staring at a picture of last Saturday’s 20-16 Coliseum scoreboard.

But it’s all good. We’re happy about what’s going on.

It’s all about priorities, and, for once, we’ve got them right.