But it was also painfully clear that Ted and Ned wholeheartedly abetted Faust's desire to stay through the end of his excruciating five-year contract. They knew as well as the rest of us that Faust was a catastrophe, but we also knew that they valued honoring Faust's contract more than they did promptly correcting the egregious mistake they made in hiring him in the first place.
The last shred of hope that Faust would leave before the end of his contract disappeared the day after ND ended the 1983 regular season with a 23-22 home loss to Air Force. It was our third straight loss to drop our record to 6-5, and Faust's sixth straight loss in November overall. Many of us were hoping ND would use that as the occasion to fire him. Instead, ND announced it would be accepting a bid to the Liberty Bowl -- an absolute shocker at the time, since ND never had previously accepted a bowl bid with a record worse than 8-3, and in fact had rejected bowl bids in 1971 (8-2) and 1975 (8-3). We all knew that bowl bid was being shoved down our throats, and that it was a signal that Faust wasn't leaving before the end of his contract.
1984 and 1985 were "dead man walking" years. As usual with Faust, we had fleeting success, including a surprising four-game winning streak to end the 1984 regular season, capped by a 44-7 annihilation of Penn State and ND's first win in LA in 18 years. But we knew we'd crash-land before long. The 1985 season featured "Farewell Tour" t-shirts which included ND's season schedule, with the last line reading: "January 1 -- Idle."
Fortunately, we also had enough faith in Ted and Ned to make up for that long, sorry slog by hiring an excellent replacement for Faust. I only regret that you and I weren't students when Holtz was coach.