Tuesday, March 27, 2012
Should Manti Te'o have gone to Hawai'i instead of Notre Dame
Manti Te’o has decided to come back for his senior season at Notre Dame. Is this due to his optimistic outlook for the Irish to compete for the national title? Maybe. But in my opinion, he made a huge mistake. His mistake wasn’t choosing to go back to Notre Dame, his mistake was going there in the first place.
Te’o, known as one of the most vicious linebackers to come from the Polynesian island of Hawai’i, had an opportunity to become one of the most dynamite defensive players ever to play ball at the University of Hawai’i, but he chose Notre Dame. In his past three seasons, the Irish have gone 8-5, 8-5, and 6-6; with a record of 0-3 against Michigan, and 1-2 against USC.
Irish fans have been in limbo ever since the departure of Lou Holtz, who gave them their only shot at a national title (winning one in 1988). So if we take a step back and think, what makes this choice more logical than staying at home? Why should choosing a mediocre (at best) Notre Dame team dominate over staying at home and becoming a legend?
Oh I get it, education? Highly doubt it. Ever since Bob Davies became coach in 1997, the academic standards have plummeted (I know from experience, and no I won’t name drop). This university has finally realized that they must join the club in competing with the SEC and PAC 12 when it comes to recruiting. Lets face it; no one wants to go to Notre Dame anymore when you can play in the S-E-C! S-E-C!!
Manti Te’o could have joined the ranks of such players as Pisa Tinosamoa, and Leonard Peters. (According to Reggie Bush, no one hits harder than Peters. Bush once said when speaking of hard hitters, “The guy that sticks out is No. 42, the safety from Hawai’i. He was just everywhere . . . I don’t know his name but he was fast and he was a great player and every time I got tackled, he was there.”) Just think about the impact Te’o could have brought in this post-Sugar Bowl era of Warrior football. The Hawaii defense has had many holes in it throughout the years, and Te’o could have filled those holes and been a dominate presence in the middle for the Bows. I guess playing for Notre Dame is still an incredible honor for some after all, but they will never compete like they once did when they were branded as “America’s football team.”
Te’o has had a really good career at ND, but will he be one of Notre Dame’s big names in history? Of course not. They will not allow him to be. Notre Dame has swallowed up some of America’s greatest talents into a black hole of mediocrity for as long as I can remember, and the fact that Te’o skipped out on playing at Hawaii because of Greg McMackin may have been a huge mistake. If a miracle occurs and Notre Dame turns things around, then I will retract my statement. Until then, I honestly believe that the islands lost another great in Manti Te’o.