From "Out of Bounds"


When the injured Art Perry (Guard 1949-50) found his left leg encased in a hip to toe cast, he looked forward to a few days without football practice. No such luck.

"Leahy saw me limping across campus," recalls Perry. "He asked me how I was. I said I felt okay."
"That's good, Arthur," cooed the coach. "Because as scholarship athlete, you have certain responsibilities to fulfill. I shall expect you at practice this afternoon."

Perry went to practice. "I thought," he says, "just to watch."
Leahy had other ideas. He inquired about the leg again. "Some slight exercise might be just the tonic to improve your condition, Arthur," he offered.

Perry's mother, meanwhile, was worried and upset. Having just heard of her son's injury, she had motored to Notre Dame that very day. But Art was nowhere to be found. His room, the infirmary, the hospital - where could he be? In desperation, she hurried to football practice. She passed through the gate of Cartier field and froze. There was her injured boy, in a hip cast, running laps.

"My parents were kind of surprised," admits Perry. "They still talk about it."

                                    *  *  *  *  *  *

"You can do more recruiting by drying dishes in the kitchen with a boy's mother than you can with all the promises in the world." Leahy proved his own quaint theory by getting Ralph Guglielmi enrolled at Notre Dame after a brief chat with Ralph's grandmother.

After the coach drove away from the Guglielmi home in Grandview, Ohio, Ralph's grandmother spoke in Italian - she could speak nothing else.

"That's a nice man," she told her grandson, a highly touted high school quarterback. "You should go to college where he teaches."

"Grandmother," Ralph was confused. "How can you say that? I saw you talking to Coach Leahy, but he can't speak Italian and you speak no English. How can you tell he's a nice man?"

Grandmother Guglielmi tapped her temple. "He speaks with his eyes," she said.

*  *  *  *  * 


Back to Irish Reveries