Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Cheer for Old Notre Dame... and Michigan, Too

(Soundbite of music)


This weekend in college football, number one plays number two: Michigan at Notre Dame. What, you say? Notre Dame is only number two in the current A.P. rankings and Michigan is number 11. Who cares about football? We're talking about fight songs.

A few years back, William Studwell put out a book called College Fight Songs: An Annotated Anthology, in which he ranked most of the major college anthems in America. Number one? Notre Dame's victory march. And number two? The Victors, from the University of Michigan. Mr. Studwell has no dog in this fight song fight. He graduated from the University of Connecticut, which didn't even make his top 25, and is professor emeritus at Northern Illinois University, which came in at number 23. Professor Studwell has said, Notre Dame's fight song makes you feel good and cheery and lively and all that. Michigan's The Victors isn't jolly; it just kind of overwhelms you. It stomps.

(Soundbite of music) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.