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Things People Forget About Notre Dame Football: Stoned Shady, An Unlikely Shutout and Underrated Marketing

This week in forgotten Irish trivia

NCAA Football: Nevada at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

This week’s entry in the genre of bizarre Notre Dame Fighting Irish trivia brings us a highly unconventional musical guest, a retroactively shocking defensive effort by Charlie Weis’ last Notre Dame team, and a throwback to the last gasp of the Adidas years at Notre Dame. Let’s do this:

Eminem Was Absolutely DAZED During the 2013 Michigan Game

The 2013 game against the Michigan Wolverines was a forgettable affair, featuring a pair of mediocre teams duking it out to a 41-30 Michigan win. But sandwiched amid all that suck was a highly entertaining halftime visit by Eminem, who appeared in the booth alongside Kirk Herbstreit and Brent Musburger and appeared to be rather...lost in himself.

By far the best part of this clip is watching Musburger - a 74-year-old in his final season at ESPN who had nonetheless clearly done a lot of research on Eminem’s discography - persevere through the interview like an absolute pro as the disoriented rapper shuffles and stares confusedly around the room while an awkwardly laughing Herbstreit begs him to go to commercial. Chris Fowler could never.

Last year, Herbstreit recalled this moment and stated that Eminem was not under the influence, and was in fact putting on a stunt to market his upcoming album. If so, hats off to him for providing one of the few moments worth remembering from that regrettable evening.

Jon Tenuta Shut Down Colin Kaepernick

Charlie Weis’s Notre Dame teams earned a reputation for being terrible at defense, and the 2009 unit led by Jon Tenuta was no exception. This makes it pretty surprising to look back at the first game of that season, in which Tenuta’s defense absolutely throttled a dynamic Nevada Wolf Pack rushing offense led by a quarterback who would go on to terrorize some of the best defenses in the NFL: Colin Kaepernick.

35-0, with Kaepernick held to only 39 yards rushing, 149 yards passing and a 24.7 QB rating. For context, this same Notre Dame team the following week surrendered 240 yards passing and 70 yards rushing, and three total touchdowns to one Tate Forcier. They were later gashed for 279 yards and a touchdown by 25-year-old failed baseball prospect Dave Shinskie and the Boston College Eagles. Tenuta never seemed to have an answer for profoundly mediocre competition, but somehow against one of the most prolific college quarterbacks of his era his squad was completely dominant.

Michael B. Jordan’s Notre Dame Fight Song Ad

Adidas’ last update to Notre Dame’s jerseys came in the 2010 season with the introduction of the “TechFit” look that cast aside the previous jersey design, which most Irish fans remember for featuring massive numbers that could be seen from space. They rolled out this new uniform style across their portfolio of schools with ads featuring Michael B. Jordan, known at the time for his role in Friday Night Lights, uttering spirited spoken-word renditions of the schools’ fight songs.

For some reason I couldn’t find video of the Notre Dame version of the ad, but here is a link to the rest: to quote the great philosopher Bane, you’ll just have to imagine the fire. It’s a sad thing Notre Dame is no longer with Adidas and the ad is no longer visible, because with Jordan having becoming a bona fide movie star this could have a great second life as a piece of promotional/recruiting material.