Sports. Honestly. Since 2011

Three Classic College Football Movies

Classic College Football Movies

There are many classic movies that cover any part of sports.  You have the non-fiction serious ones that have come out. Then, there are the funnier ones.  This list in no order shows the top three movies. These are the ones I find the most interesting that are part of college football.

Classic 1. Rudy

The first classic is Rudy.  It is one of the most recognizable stories in college football.  Based on a true story, it follows Daniel Ruettiger Jr or better known as “Rudy”.  The teachers in Rudy’s school think that he does not have the smarts to make it to a school like Notre Dame. Daniel, would like to start but if not, he would just love to have a chance, an opportunity to put on the Blue and Gold for the Fighting Irish.  His future seemed to not be with the Fighting Irish, but instead as a steelworker.  While most think it’s impossible, one guy in Fortune, the grounds manager asserts that making the football team or not, the goal is to become smart and good in the classroom.

As we know, Rudy made a big impact in the real world.  In 2005, he was a leader during the pep rally at Notre Dame along with Joe Montana and Tim Brown and even had an award called the Rudy Award.  Rudy shows the signs of confidence and never giving up on your dreams, even in the worse of times.

2. We Are Marshall

Another classic non-fiction movie based on true events is We Are Marshall which talks about the tragedy of the 1970-71 Marshall Thundering Herd Football team.  After a tough last-second 17 to 14 loss to East Carolina, the team was back on its way to campus.  However, during the trip back, there was a bad storm.  The plane went down on the top of the hillside near the center of town. All 75 passengers on the team plane were killed in the crash, including 37 members of the Marshall University football team. Eight football coaches, including head coach Rick Tolley, athletic director Charlie Kautz, 25 boosters, and five flight crew members.

The last game against Ohio was canceled and the program considered suspending operations for the future.  That is when Nate Ruffin, played by Anthony Mackie, leads a student rally for the university to keep the team going.

The team hired Jack Lengyel as the head coach, but the team had trouble also finding players. Many who they scouted in high school were going to West Virginia or other schools.  Instead of having notes and technology back then, they wrote names on a chalkboard and had to mail letters in.  The NCAA had rules against freshmen playing but Marshall needed them in order to have enough players. The community, even some reluctantly, rallied behind the renewal of the program. The Thundering Herd won only two games in that 1971 season but had a thrilling last-second win over Xavier. This movie showed ways of emotion and leadership.

By 1972, the NCAA Board of Governors changed the rules, allowing freshmen to play varsity football and basketball. It is still known as the Marshall Rule.

 3. Waterboy

Finally, the last fan favorite and a shift in tone from two highly serious movies; You have to have comedy, why not with the fictional South Central Louisiana MudDogs?  Who knew saying “Water sucks, Gatorade is better” could tick off one of your players so significantly that you suddenly become a contender.  Robert “Bobby” Boucher Jr is just a normal boy who loves being a waterboy for the MudDogs coached by Klein who’s played by Jerry Reed.  One day, Bobby has had enough of a player who has bullied him and beats him to nearly a pulp.

Klein puts him on the team, hoping this move helps the MudDogs.  Bobby’s mom however tells him about the evil of “fooseball” as she says, and he has to keep it a secret.  With some tick in his find and his imagination its someone talking bad to him or water, Bobby is a force to be reckoned with.  That is until it’s found out that he never finished high school at South Lafayette (A fake school) and turned out, he was actually home-schooled.  This made him ineligible and in order to play, he had to pass an exam.  During this time, his mother explains to Bobby that his father actually never died from dehydration, but that he actually left him and the family.  Bobby became the leader after that not only for his family but for the team.

Classic Conclusion

Just like the previous two movies,  it ends on a high note as on the final play, the MudDogs run a halfback pass with Bobby as the running back.  Boucher throws it up with a man wide open in the end zone and a thirty-point comeback, as they won 30 to 27.  Adam Sandler would go on to star in another football movie in 2005 called the Longest Yard, but his first is still an all time great.


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