You could fill entire stadiums with underage college kids who consume alcohol on a Saturday evening. That may not make it legal, but it does make you wonder whether this task force might have better served the public it protects and serves.
Just one block north and one block west of the house that was raided stands Corby’s, arguably the most popular off-campus bar near Notre Dame. Three times as many patrons can be found at Corby’s on any Saturday evening during football season, especially when the weather is still pleasant. A lot of the gang at Corby’s, as well as the Linebacker, another popular watering hole, are driving home. Not all of them are sober. A few of them may even have used false identification.
Notre Dame students are a hard-working lot Monday through Friday. They study long hours and generally create much less mischief than most people their age. And if they happen to be varsity athletes, they also devote an extra 20 hours or so to their sport. They are not the only college students in America whose schedule is that demanding, but as a former club-sport athlete at Notre Dame, I can tell you that Saturday night is the closest thing most Domers get to a reprieve each week.
That still doesn’t make it legal for a 19- or 20-year-old to drink. But they are going to do so. In South Bend. And in Madison. And in Boulder (oh, certainly in Boulder). Notre Dame does not have fraternities, but what fraternity house in Bloomington or West Lafayette could survive a Saturday night raid by the Indiana State Excise Police any weekend of the semester?
As of Monday evening the University of Notre Dame had no official announcement to make regarding the arrests or the immediate athletic eligibility of the sixteen varsity athletes arrested. Yeatman (listed on a police statement at “Yateman”) already has a DUI dating back to January and was on probation. On Sunday morning he was charged with “minor consuming, false information and resisting arrest”. His fate on both the football and lacrosse teams, as well as at Notre Dame, is most tenuous.
The nation grieved for those hurt, killed and affected by the Boston Marathon bombings. After one of the suspects was caught on Friday — following a day-long lockdown and manhunt — sports returned to Boston over the weekend.
In the coming days Notre Dame administration members are going to have to rule on the fates of these students. Men such as Notre Dame president Fr. John Jenkins (Notre Dame class of ’76), athletic director Jack Swarbrick (Notre Dame ’76) and football coach Charlie Weis (’78) are going to have to either decide or abide by these matters. They are good men, people of character, and I am willing to wager that one or perhaps even all three of them had their first beer at Notre Dame before his 21st birthday.
And so, should these 37 students who were sitting in a student-rented house minding their business last Saturday night be disciplined, what will be the lesson? Will it be, it’s wrong to drink before age 21? Or will it be, it’s wrong to get caught?
Lingering questions were answered emphatically by the 2012 team, but 2013 is an all-new season that brings all-new question marks. Brian Kelly feels fairly confident his offense is in a great position to take a step forward, but to do that, they’ll need the services of some under-the-radar players.
Notre Dame's 2012 season
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2012 Notre Dame opponents
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