Dec 12, 2012, 2:57 PM EDT
Though he is regarded as one of the best coaches in football history, the life and death of Knute Rockne remains a bit of a mystery to many Notre Dame fans.
Rockne passed away in a tragic plane accident on March 31, 1931, on his way west to help in the production of The Spirit of Notre Dame. With 105 wins, just 12 losses and five ties, he is the winningest coach in 125 years of Fighting Irish football.
Andrew Owens, assistant managing editor of The Observer, recently set out to learn more about the legendary head coach for an article called “Finding Rockne.” The senior’s journey included a visit to Highland Cemetery in South Bend, as well as a stop in Bazaar, Kan., the town near where Transcontinental and Western Air Flight 599 went down.
With Notre Dame’s 12-0 season and impending national championship berth, I’ve grown increasingly inquisitive about who the man who got the ball rolling for the nation’s most storied program. I, like so many others, didn’t choose to attend Notre Dame because of football, but the sport is what put Notre Dame on the map. If it weren’t for Rockne, how many of the 8,452 undergraduate students currently attending the University would actually be here?
I realized just how little I know about the man who started it all. Rockne is forever immortalized in bronze form outside the tunnel on the north side of Notre Dame Stadium. Realizing Irish coach Brian Kelly is one win away from getting his own statue someday, I considered what parallels, if any, exist between the two men.
Check out the full article on The Observer website.
Photographer and sports writer Kevin Noonan, who joined Owens on the trip, also wrote a day-by-day recap of the experience.
While you’re at it, I’d also highly recommend checking out the rest of the newspaper’s national championship edition of Irish Insider.
About Strong and True
ND Football on YouTube
- RT @CoachBrianKelly: #WeAreND 1 hour ago
- Not a bad day when an NFL All-Pro alum comes back to talk with your guys. Keep doin' your thing with the… twitter.com/i/web/status/8… 6 hours ago
- Burst. Hops. Heart. Cole Luke showed out at our Pro Day prior to the 2017 NFL Draft. #NDintheNFL https://t.co/RXVSuqe8qj 1 day ago
- RT @NDFootball: 24 Reps at 225lbs. 36" Vert. No Linebacker accomplished both those feats at the NFL Combine. James Onwualu did at our Pro… 1 day ago
- RT @dalex3333: We can never have enough great players take the field on game day. Recruiting never stops! We want the best of the best. Who… 1 day ago
- Track. Aragon Finishes Seventh at Raleigh Relays
- Baseball. Sunday Brunch: Nussbaum Still Makes Plays
- Swimming & Diving. No. 19 Notre Dame Earns Highest NCAA Championship Point Total, Finish in School History
- M. Lacrosse. Replay: Irish Roll Past Buckeyes
- Fencing. Notre Dame Strengthens Lead After Day 3 At NCAA Fencing Championships
- Fencing. Irish Increase Lead At NCAA Championship
- Baseball. Bass Strong As Irish Fall To Seminoles
- Softball. Irish Fire On All Cylinders To VT Series Sweep
- M. Ice Hockey. Irish Rally Past No. 1 Seed Minnesota, 3-2
- M. Lacrosse. Irish Hand Buckeyes First Defeat Of Season In 12-7 Victory