It can be argued that along with talented players and coaches, it is traditions that makes college football so great.
During its rich football history, the University of Notre Dame can boast of all these things -- making gameday in South Bend, Ind., unlike anywhere else. It also makes being a Notre Dame fan a truly unique experience.
Here is a look at 25 things that make rooting for the Fighting Irish so great:
Nobody has as much to do with Notre Dame rising to national prominence as Rockne. The former Notre Dame player finished with a record of 105-12-5 as coach of the team. He won six national titles and coached the team to an undefeated, untied season five times during his 13 years at the helm.
In 1940, "Knute Rockne All American" hit theaters -- further securing the coach's places in football lore.
Win One for The Gipper
Days after leading Notre Dame to a victory over Northwestern in 1920, George Gipp lay dying in the hospital. Among the visitors to the All-American's bedside was Rockne.
Eight years later, Rockne used his meeting as a motivational halftime speech to his team, saying that Gipp had asked that sometime, when the team was facing tough odds, to "go out there and win just one for the Gipper."
The Irish rallied for a 12-6 win over previously undefeated Army team. When Hollywood came calling Ronald Reagan was cast as Gipp in "Knute Rockne All-American," and Reagan often used the line from the film during his speeches.
The Four Horsemen
In 1924, a New York Herald Tribune writer named Grantland Rice wrote one of the most memorable openings to an article in the history of sports.
"Outlined under a blue-gray October sky, the four horsemen road again," wrote Rice, who went on to compare the Irish backfield of Harry Stuhldreher, Don Miller, Jim Crowley and Elmer Layden as aliases for Death, Destruction, Pestilence and Famine.
Shortly after the backfield posed for the now famous photo atop of horses, and the rest is football history.
Rudy, Rudy, Rudy
The undersized Ruettiger's tale is that of a underdog, who in his last game finally got his big chance in the spotlight and was carried off the field by his teammates.
"Rudy" is one of the most beloved sports films in history, and though he only saw the field for a couple plays, the film has made Ruettiger is one of the school's most noted alumni.
Notre Dame Stadium
Opened in 1930, Notre Dame Stadium is one of the most recognized football venues in the world.
The stadium was expanded to add more than 20,000 fans per game prior to the 1997 season and now "seats" 80,795 people on gameday.
In the film "Rudy," Rudy Ruettiger's father described his first trip to the stadium: "This is the most beautiful sight these eyes have ever seen."
Except for one game in 1973, every home game at Notre Dame Stadium since 1966 has been a sellout. The one game, by the way, was moved to Thanksgiving to accommodate television and all the students were away from the school.
The mural titled "The Word of Life" was unveiled in 1964. The art work of Jesus with both arms up -- much like that of a referee after a touchdown -- can be viewed from inside Notre Dame Stadium.
The Band of the Fighting Irish
Affiliated with the school since 1846, the band has been part of every Notre Dame home football game since the Irish took on the University of Michigan back in 1887.
Created in 1949, the Irish Guard is a group of students that leads the band to the field at home games. Among the requirements for the Irish Guard are that students be at least 6 feet 2 inches.
Wake up the echoes
Written by Notre Dame graduates Michael Shea and John Shea, the "Notre Dame Victory March" is arguably the most familiar fight song in college football. With the familiar words such "Cheer, Cheer for Old Notre Dame," "Wake up the Echoes" and "Shake Down the Thunder," it's of little surprise that in 1969, as college football celebrated its 100th season, the song was honored as the "greatest of all the fight songs."
Notre Dame Our Mother
Written for the opening of Notre Dame Stadium in 1931, the song is played after the game and students and fans often sway in unison during the music when played following the game. The team gathers near the student section prior to the song and remains as the band also plays the "Notre Dame Victory March."
Prior to the fourth quarter, the band plays Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture." Fans wave their arms and make the form of a letter to reference the head coach ("W" when Charlie Weiss was coach, "L" when Lou Holtz was coach, etc.) during the song.
Standing Room Only
It is tradition for students to stand throughout the entire football game.
The team introduced new helmets in 2011, which are more true to the color of the golden dome on campus. The tradition of 23.9 karat gold flakes collected from when the dome was guilded are included in the painting process.
The new process for painting the helmets is so technical, and the tradition of having students paint them before each game was stopped. The student managers are still included on touching up the helmets prior to game day.
Play like a Champion today
Installed during the Lou Holtz era, the "Play Like a Champion Today" sign is touched by players as they make their way toward the field.
Hall of Fame Players
Since the beginning of the College Football Hall of Fame in 1951, 43 players have been added to the Hall. The total is more than any other school.
Hall of Fame Coaches
Notre Dame has a long and proud coaching tradition. Six coaches have been enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame, also the most of any school.
Pro Football Hall of Famers
Nine former Irish players have gone on to be inducted to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. Only Southern California, with 10, has seen more players go on to a Hall-of-Fame professional football career.
Notre Dame players have won seven Heisman Trophy awards, while three other players have finished second in the voting.
The Irish have won eight national titles as awarded by the Associated Press, which began the tradition in 1936. Only Alabama, which won its eighth title during the 2011 season, has as many.
Since 1965, a student has been chosen to dress as a leprechaun and help lead the crowd in cheers.
Friday Pep Rally
On Friday prior to a home game, the team holds a pep rally in the Joyce Center. The pep rally includes the team, coaches, band, cheerleaders and leprechaun.
Drummer's Circle and Trumpets Under the Dome
The school's drumline gets together at the steps of Main Building for a Midnight Drummer's Circle to kick off gameday activities.
On Friday afternoon and Saturday before a game, the band's trumpet players gather for Trumpets Under the Dome.
The Irish football team attends Mass before the game at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart and then walk to the stadium to prepare for the game.
Mass is held in the Basilica and Stephan Center 30 minutes after the game.
Retired Indiana Sgt. Tim McCarthy has reminded fans to drive safely during an announcement at the stadium since 1960. McCarthy starts with "May I have your attention please," and after a quick cheer, the crowd goes quiet to hear the message. The message is followed by one of McCarthy's famous puns.
"Traditions," University of Notre Dame.
"Facts and Stats," University of Notre Dame.
"Notre Dame Stadium," University of Notre Dame.
"Notre Dame Victory March," University of Notre Dame.
"2011 Football Media Guide," University of Notre Dame.
Allen Barrara, "The Sports Story That Changed America." The New York Times.
Jeff DeLuca has been a sportswriter since 1997. He has been a fan of the University of Notre Dame since the early 1980s when his family's vacation plans often included a stop at the campus.