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Sooners fans in Leprechaun Land getting ready for OU vs. Notre Dame

With OU heading to Notre Dame and adding another stamp to an already impressive travel log, OU fans everywhere are excited about the matchup. But for fans like Beth Usewicz living in the land of the leprechaun, the enthusiasm is off the charts.
by Jenni Carlson Published: September 26, 2013

/articleid/3887019/1/pictures/2222862">Photo - Fans wait for college football game between the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the West Virginia University Mountaineers at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Okla., on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman
Fans wait for college football game between the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the West Virginia University Mountaineers at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Okla., on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman

He passed it on to his daughter.

“We are crimson and cream through and through,” she said. “Most people would say it's obnoxious, but I think it's healthy.”

Usewicz went to OU in the 90s, earning a communications degree and started a career in college athletics. She did media relations in places like New York and Boston. Everywhere she went, she found Sooner fans.

That was the case when she moved to Chicago in 2005 — she now works for Follett Higher Education Group, which manages hundreds of college bookstores around the country — but she also found Notre Dame fans there.

Lots and lots of Notre Dame fans.

Some are grads. Some are Irish. Some are Catholic. Some are a combination of those things. But all are obsessed with the Fighting Irish.

Usewicz gets a Sooner fix with watch parties and get togethers with the OU group in Chicago. There are usually a couple hundred fans when the group gathers to watch football games at Declan's Irish Pub, a bar in Chicago's historic Old Town area.

Usewicz also talks OU football with her dad all the time. They text or talk on the phone numerous times during games.

But there's something special about getting to see your team in person — in your own backyard.

“I got tickets, which I didn't think was going to happen,” Usewicz said. “I couldn't be more thrilled for the experience.”

She plans to soak in all the crimson-colored glory.

And probably yell “Boomer!” a few times, too.

Jenni Carlson: Jenni can be reached at (405) 475-4125. Like her at facebook.com/JenniCarlsonOK, follow her at twitter.com/jennicarlson_ok or view her personality page at newsok.com/jennicarlson.

by Jenni Carlson
Columnist
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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