Unbeatable: Demanding Perfection

Jerry Barca '99 | Aug. 28, 2013 | Notre Dame Magazine

Editor’s Note: These are a collection of excerpts from chapter seven of Unbeatable by Jerry Barca ‘99 (St. Martin’s Press) about Notre Dame’s 1988 championship season.

[In 1988] Holtz retooled the coaching staff when he returned to the States [from Japan], but on that flight to Japan he couldn’t shake the image of Zorich crying in the Cotton Bowl locker room.

“He didn’t even play,” Holtz said. “I decided then that we were going to put people out on that field who really wanted to play. I came back and that was the whole thing. The attitude was going to be right.”

He scheduled a meeting to speak to the team at the end of winter conditioning. Holtz stood before them, a one-man demand for perfection. As he had done the first time he met with the team, he mapped out the necessary elements for achievement.

“We are going to practice strict loyalty to one another. We are going to be loyal to the University of Notre Dame, the administration, coaches, and teammates,” he said. “We cannot be a good, close-knit football team without showing respect and concern for one another.”

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 by Daily Domer Staff

Posted In: ND Magazine