Sperber...tackles the details, great and small, unearthing a treasure." —New York Times Book Review
Shake Down the Thunder traces the history of the Notre Dame football program—which has acquired almost mythical proportions—from its humble origins in the 19th century to its status as the paragon of college sports. It presents the true story of the program's formative years, the reality behind the myths. Both social history and sports history, this book documents as never before the first half-century of Notre Dame football and relates it to the rise of big-time intercollegiate athletics, the college sports reform movement, and the corrupt sporting press of the period. Shake Down the Thunder is must reading for all Fighting Irish fans, their detractors, and any reader engaged by American cultural history.