A few years back some Michigan and Notre Dame fans poked fun at each other’s expense by packaging together a highlight film of their opponent’s shortcomings in the previously annual match-up between the Wolverines and Irish. If I am not mistaken, this started with the 2006 game after Notre Dame, ranked second in the AP poll at the time, head coach Charlie Weis proclaimed during a pregame pep rally the previous day his team’s play would speak for itself on the field. It did, in hilarious fashion for those in Ann Arbor, with Michigan winning in South Bend by the final score of 47-21. This left one Michigan fan with some video skills to clip together lowlights of Notre Dame’s performance and put them together to the tune from British comedy show The Benny Hill Show. The name of the tune used as the theme is “Yakety Sax,” performed by Boots Randolph.
This theme would carry over to the 2007 edition of the game, with Michigan toying with Notre Dame’s prized recruit and new starting quarterback Jimmy Clausen. Michigan pitched the shutout in this one, 38-0, while holding Notre Dame to negative rushing total. This dropped the Irish to 0-3 and snapped a dismal start to the season for Michigan, which started the year by losing at home to Appalachian State and Oregon. This was clearly the low point in the storied history for both programs.
Notre Dame fans got their revenge the following season. The Wolverines committed six turnovers in South Bend in the 2008 edition of the game. Notre Dame was outgained 388-260 on their home field but capitalized on the turnover frenzy with a 35-17 victory march. Michigan would go on to a 3-9 season in the first year of the brief Rich Rodriguez era.
This past weekend saw what may be the last installment in the rivalry series for quite some time. With no future meetings scheduled between Michigan and Notre Dame and both schools exploring other scheduling opportunities (Notre Dame announced a future home-and-home series with Ohio State in the ultimate troll move, and Michigan is currently in negotiations with Texas for a home-and-home series), who knows when the Wolverines and Irish will get back together. With that being the case, Notre Dame will take the last laugh for the time being after thumping Michigan in week two of the 2014 season, 31-0. It was not a good night for Devin Gardner, Devin Funchess or Brady Hoke. It was, however, another fine night for Everett Golson and Brian Kelly‘s Irish. After a few years without it, I figured it was appropriate to send this series out with one more Yakety Sax highlight film.