Skip to content

Three-game series set with Louisville

Sep 12, 2013, 5:47 PM EDT

Teddy Bridgewater

As the ACC scheduling pact begins next season, news of new conference opponents starts trickling out. One team that’s set to start playing the Irish is Louisville, who will visit South Bend next season. While Notre Dame rarely comments on their upcoming schedules until they are set, Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich confirmed the three games, while also letting an interesting tidbit out of the bag.

The Cardinals are new members of the reconstituted ACC, and they’ll travel to South Bend next season before welcoming Notre Dame to Louisville in 2017 with a return trip to Notre Dame booked for 2020. (If you’re wondering why there’s going to be a significant gap in rebooting the Notre Dame-Michigan series, Jack Swarbrick is juggling puzzle pieces well into the next decade.)

The official match-up between is set for every three years on a rotating home and home basis. That the Irish and Cardinal play each other now isn’t for a lack of effort on Louisville’s behalf, with the Courier Journal reporting that Jurich has been trying to get the Irish on their schedule since Kevin White was in charge of Irish athletics. You’ll never guess who got in the way of that match-up, at least according to Jurich:

A game against the Irish has been years in the making, dating to former coach Bobby Petrino’s time at U of L.

“It wasn’t lack of effort,” Jurich said. “We’ve been begging Notre Dame to play for many, many years in the past.”

Jurich brokered a deal with then-Notre Dame athletic director Kevin White — someone he calls a “good friend” who’s now working in the same position Duke — and the two sides agreed to play a three-game series: once in South Bend, once in Louisville and again at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis from 2007-2009.

It was all in place, except for final approval.

“It had to be passed by their coach, and their coach vetoed it,” Jurich said. “It was in his contract he was able to do that. It was Charlie Weis. That’s understandable. The coaches want to play the teams they pick and choose. We were on a great high at that time.”

Would Weis have had the juice to dictate scheduling? Maybe. If the negotiations were to set games for the 2007-09 seasons, the then Irish head coach would’ve been in the honeymoon period of his tenure in South Bend, fresh off back-to-back BCS seasons and at the beginning of a 10-year contract extension. Playing Bobby Petrino and a program on the ascent might have been a tough go for the Irish.

That could certainly be the case next year with Charlie Strong building his program into another BCS contender. Though it might hinge on Teddy Bridgewater’s decision to return for his senior season.

  1. andy44teg - Sep 12, 2013 at 6:08 PM

    Dear Lord: Please make Teddy Bridgewater go pro. Amen

  2. don74 - Sep 12, 2013 at 6:49 PM

    Come on. Diaco’s back end of the D has to be better by then….Oh yeah, I forgot, Carlo and his people will be gone in the middle………………………, not to mention #1, #7 and #2. Maybe he will go pro, the Jet’s always need a QB.

  3. kiopta1 - Sep 12, 2013 at 7:47 PM

    He will go pro. His receivers will be different. Our D will also change. Change IS college football.

  4. papadec - Sep 12, 2013 at 8:44 PM

    I wish I could come up with something more witty than “I like it”! I’m still down over the Michigan game, but I do like this schedule change. It will be interesting to see what the other ACC games will be, and when Michigan & ND play each other again.

  5. vanpearcysvaportrail - Sep 13, 2013 at 9:58 AM

    They sell beer at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium. That already makes it an improvement over that sinkhole in Ann Arbor.

  6. irishdog80 - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    Are we talking about the Louisville team that lost to mediocre Syracuse and Connecticut teams after squeaking by a bunch of teams last year? The team with a QB that has a good shot at being the first QB taken in the 2014 draft and definitely in the first round? I’m not worried and it won’t take 5 overtimes to beat them.

  7. 1notredamefan - Sep 13, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    Where do I buy Tickets?

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!