November 7, 1925 - The student managers get caught

This story used to be included in the football programs along with a picture/bio up of the current managers.

"Dating back to the days of Knute Rockne, the student managers organization has served a vital role in the success of the Notre Dame athletic program and the football team in particular....Back in the 1920s under Rockne, the Notre Dame "bums," as the student managers then were known, handled very unofficially many of the same chores the present managers do. But the university community never knew exactly who they were or what they did.

The bums were a group of six or seven Notre Dame students who aided the Irish football squad on the road. Since the team traveled by Pullman, the Irish players would hide the stowaways beneath their berths as best they could. Rockne always acted like he never knew what was happening - in fact, he would act astonished when the bums would mysteriously show up ready to work in New York, or wherever Notre Dame happened to be playing that Saturday. But Rock always had a job for each of them.

On one trip to Penn State in 1925, the train conductor became highly suspicious and locked every compartment on the train. He counted every last passenger and naturally turned up the seven extras, much to the apparent amazement of Rockne.

So Notre Dame's head coach made a show of publicly chastising his helpers, warning them that the school was likely to take action. But Rockne actually depended on them as much to psychologically prepare the squad as anything. He would quiz the bums about the team's mental state to determine which players might need prodding and which other had had enough...."

Keywords: football, student managers, bums, penn state, knute rockne, train

Posted On: 2013-08-28 00:15:05 by IrishTrpt07


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