Coming to ESPN as part of its 30 for 30 series tomorrow, Saturday, December 10: CATHOLICS VS CONVICTS
Patrick Creadon’s look back at an infamous college football rivalry debuted at Chicago this Fall. It has also screened at Denver.
In 1988, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the University of Miami Hurricanes were both undefeated, led by coaches with a contentious history. The rivalry consumed both campuses, inspiring Pat Walsh, an entrepreneurial student with athletic dreams of his own, to risk official censure by expanding his illegal dorm-room t-shirt-making business with a new release: a shirt boldly emblazoned with the slogan “Catholics vs Convicts.” Pressing the dichotomy between the teams – the traditional, conservative Notre Dame against the upstart Miami, whose players had had some run-ins with the law – the shirt was an instant hit and added fuel to the fire in the countdown to the teams’ gridiron face-off. Creadon, who was a Notre Dame student at the time and Walsh’s roommate, weaves the story of the infamous t-shirt through this recounting of the legendary rivalry and memorable game. While the background on the shirt doesn’t quite have enough heft to carry the project to the extent it’s focused on here, it offers an unusual angle through which to appreciate the larger story.