Is Notre Dames Football Program Pro-Life or Pro-Choice?

Before the Charlie Weiss era I used to root for Notre Dame as my Number 2 selection after my childhood religion  The Ohio State University.  After discovering that Weiss was seemingly proud of being an excessive abuser of profanity ( an entire 60 Minutes piece seemed to revolve around how cute everyone thought it was that Notre Dame’s coach loved to heap profanity out in liberal portions- including the school’s priest-president),  I decided to drop cheering for Notre Dame football- for what would it be for Our Lady University to succeed on the field  but lose her soul in the locker-room.

Now that we have dispatched Charlie, we have the Brian Kelly era upon us.  I recalled that there were rumors swirling around him that he had indicated at some point that he was pro-choice on abortion. Now that the football season is right around the Bend- I need to know if there is anything to the rumors, and whether this interview I posted is accurate or misleading.  Kelly seems to imply that he is pro-life, but he never just comes out with it- he dances around the issue with fragmentary thoughts like ” I’m a Catholic…it’s cool to be Catholic”. OK- so it would seem that the guy is either going deep-cover as a pro-abort, or he was never pro-abort and was the victim of some bad reporting.  I’m not taking a position on his position until I know for sure just what his public position has been – but I would like to see if anyone has any more clarifying reportage so that I can make an informed decision about whether to cheer for or against Notre Dame football this year.  This is an extremely important issue and I would like everyone to take their quality time to help research this grave matter!

22 Responses to Is Notre Dames Football Program Pro-Life or Pro-Choice?

  1. Jay Anderson says:

    Well, Tim, at least you got your priorities right on your number one choice.

    Go Buckeyes!


    I still reluctantly pull for the Fighting Irish, as well, but I’m not holding out any hope for Brian Kelly’s pro life bona fides.

  2. Tim Shipe says:

    OH- IO Jay- is it too much to ask for a Catholic Tebow- maybe a Coach at Notre Dame to be a bit more like Coach Dungee- with a really strong Catholic identity to go along with a passion for football?

  3. Brad Miner says:

    “Cool to be Catholic,” huh? Well, yes . . . but it seems like Kelly’s saying the equivalent of “It’s cool to dye your hair green on St. Patrick’s Day.” I’ll be interested to read what you find out about his abortion position. I suppose we can say a small prayer of thanks that at least he didn’t say, “Yeah, I’m pro-choice, as are many other Catholics.” Meanwhile: Go Bucks!

  4. You gentlemen need to face it-if you want a school with the best combination of a true Catholic student body and a great football team, you need to become fans of the Louisiana State University Fightin’ Tigers. 😉

  5. Phillip says:

    I heard this year they’ll be more like the Pouty Kittens. 🙂

  6. T. Shaw says:

    I don’t think anyone has the right to swear unless he has seen combat.

    That being said, I never heard Weiss swear. And, I don’t know if he served.

    He didn’t win enough.

    I know of one charitable thing he did (I think in his first year). He visited a child dying of cancer asked the boy if he could do ANYTHING for him. The boy asked him to call a pass play to the tight end first play next game on TV. Well, in the game, first set of offensive downs the Irish return team had them backed up on the opposing goal line.

    The child was watching and knew enough about football that no way was the play going to be a pass.

    IT WAS the plasy the child called. And, it was completed. Look it up. Weiss said he had promised the child and he kept it even though it was possibly ruinous to the game. The child went to his reward shortly after.

    So, detract Weiss all you like about his swearing, you uncharitable saint.

    PS: ND DID NOT lose its soul in any locker rooom. It lost its soul on the dais where Obamabortion spoke at that commencement.

  7. Phillip:

    That’s very sad. Very sad. I would have accepted “I heard this year they’ll be more like the Lol Cats” or something humorous or clever. “Pouty Kittens” just makes me sad for your soul.


  8. Phillip says:

    Take a number. Plenty of people sad for my soul. 😉

  9. Donald R. McClarey says:

    Michael, let us not forget the number one fan of the Tigers, the Kingfish 🙂

  10. Jenny says:

    I read somewhere that Brian Kelly once worked for Sen. Gary Hart’s campaign for president back in the 1980s. The senator is pro-abortion. I think Coach Kelly needs to be more clear on his abortion stance.

  11. Elaine Krewer says:

    I realize that since Notre Dame is supposed to be a Catholic institution, its employees should uphold the teachings of the Church or at the very least not publicly oppose or subvert them.

    If ND found, for example, that a prospective coach had appeared at campaign rallies for a pro-abort candidate and praised his committment to “women’s right to choose,” or had been attending Planned Parenthood fundraisers, or had spoken out in favor of same-sex marriage, etc. then they would be within their rights not to hire him.

    That being said, I don’t know that we necessarily have to go over this guy’s record with a fine tooth comb for the last 25 years to make sure he’s pro-life “enough” to coach football. It’s not as if he were being hired to teach moral theology or medical ethics. I

  12. Honestly, I think the way Kelly dumped Cincy shows enough about his character for me. Regardless of his views on abortion, he’s a scumbag and ought not to be representing a Catholic university with a tradition of honor. Unfortunately, ND has abandoned honor in order to win, both on and off the field.

  13. Jay Anderson says:

    “That being said, I don’t know that we necessarily have to go over this guy’s record with a fine tooth comb for the last 25 years to make sure he’s pro-life “enough” to coach football.”

    As long as he doesn’t pull a Majerus, I doubt Kelly’s views on abortion and other pro-life issues will become a major issue.

  14. John Henry says:

    Unfortunately, ND has abandoned honor in order to win, both on and off the field.

    At least UND graduates its players. For example, they graduate 36% more of their players than LSU (UND 96%; LSU 60%). And there’s no doubt that UND is sacrificing wins to reach that graduation rate.

  15. Jay Anderson says:

    And not only that, but the Browns paid a lot less for Brady Quinn to turn out to be a bust than Oakland paid JaMarcus Russell to be one of the biggest #1 draft pick busts in NFL history.

  16. Jay:

    The only reason people overpaid for Russell is b/c Notre Dame made him look that good in the Sugar Bowl. Everyone in Baton Rouge thought he was a terrible QB. You can’t attribute the stupidity of the Raiders to LSU.

  17. John Henry says:

    You can’t attribute the stupidity of the Raiders to LSU.

    Good point. Al Davis’s involvement overwhelms any other causal explanation.

  18. Jay Anderson says:

    But John Henry makes an excellent point. SEC fans love to deride the quality of football played at Midwestern schools like Notre Dame and in the Big 10.

    But those schools definitely sacrifice wins by having MUCH higher academic standards and graduation rates. The ACC also hamstrings itself in this regard.

    For what it’s worth, Vanderbilt – the SEC’s top performer in this regard – has a graduation rate of 91%, a full 5 points lower than Notre Dame’s (which, along with Duke, has the BEST graduation rate in the country).

    (But Ohio State should be embarassed and ashamed for its football program to have a graduation rate as low as it does. 62%. Pathetic, although a vast improvement over the paltry 52% that it used to be.)

  19. While I’m not going to try an argue that LSU has comparable academic standards to Notre Dame, how beneficial are graduation rates in determining a school’s commitment to education? If a school develops a good football team, the players on that team are more likely to be good enough to be drafted before they graduate. Vanderbilt’s graduation rate is high b/c their players aren’t good enough to do anything but graduate and get a job in the real world. Vanderbilt doesn’t have to do much to have that high rate. On the other hand, LSU and other SEC teams have many players that are being told by potential agents and family that they can get thousands of dollars more by not graduating. LSU has a much harder of getting its students to graduate than say Vanderbilt or Duke.

    While football schools can and should do more to improve the rate, I wonder how much of it is in the control of the schools.

  20. Jay Anderson says:

    I’m sure leaving early for the pros plays a part in it Michael.

    But the point is that Notre Dame – which also has it’s fair share of pro prospects every year – is actually NOT sacrificing academic excellence*, while at the same time trying (but not succeeding as of late) to nevertheless put a winning product on the field.

    (*In fact, I’d say that Notre Dame, in its pursuit of academic excellence, sees itself as being hamstrung by it Catholic identity even moreso than by its football tradition – which is why pursuit of “academic excellence”, at least in the context of Catholic universities, can be a double-edged sword without a leadership that recognizes that faith and reason are NOT mutually exclusive.)

  21. Tim Shipe says:

    In summation- I think the best we can hope for in Brian Kelly is that -if- he was once something of a public pro-choice supporter- now that he has stepped into the role of football coach at Our Lady University- he will keep that private opinion to himself, and allow the Church’s Hierarchy to teach on critical issues of faith and morals. If Charlie Weiss had confined his verbal profanity to his backyard when he was alone- I would have made my peace with him as a coach if that were the extent of it.

    This isn’t about judging his soul, but we should be concerned with the affects our Catholic leaders/coaches have on the youth in particular. I saw that Coach Dungee took the Jets Coach to task for his profane language- and I think that sort of public criticism is in keeping with the Christian spirit of admonishing our brothers and sisters in Christ to avoid giving public scandal to the Faith and as personal advice to build up the character of fellow disciples. It isn’t necessarily a holier than thou act to question those who are very visible Catholics, and who are mentoring the youth.

    Now I do separate the football program out from the academic life of the University- the fact that there are pro-choice priests teaching at Notre Dame is a whole other more important concern- but I don’t see that as being a barrier to giving private/public support to the football team- or am I missing something by not putting the academic program on the table in making the decision to cheer or not to cheer??

  22. Peter says:

    The man is a football coach. He’s not a theology professor or president of the university. He came to notre dame to win football games, not to fall victim to the political bs that seems to constantly be swirling around notre dame.

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