Set your DVR: Onward Notre Dame

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Usually a game between highly ranked opponents on a national stage is enough to get you excited. But for those of us that spend far too much time following the Fighting Irish, today gives you a unique opportunity to take a look behind the curtain of one of college football’s most storied programs.

An hour before kickoff, NBC will air the NFL Films produced Onward Notre Dame: South Bend to Soldier Field. Produced in coordination with Fighting Irish Digitial Media, it’s an unprecedented one-hour look at the Notre Dame football program by the legendary crew at NFL Films, the same people who bring us Hard Knocks.

“It’s the most in-depth, behind the scenes look at a week in the life of the Notre Dame football program,” said NFL Films senior coordinating producer Ross Ketover.

For a program that keeps practices closed to media, guard depth chart developments and the program’s inner-workings like state secrets, the opening up of life both on and off the field for a prestigious group like NFL Films is a pretty wonderful development.

You’ll be in team meeting rooms, seeing closed-door game planning for Michigan and Miami. You’ll have a closer look at locker room life at The Gug. Instead of hanging on frame-by-frame analysis of UND.com videos, you’ll have coaches and players mic’d for sound in both practice and games as the Irish won an emotional battle with Michigan and had a resounding triumph in Soldier Field.

With the final cut still being fleshed out as late as Friday afternoon, it’s as close to a real-time look at life inside Notre Dame football as we’ve ever seen. Filled with access to pregame, halftime, and postgame locker room access for the wins over the Wolverines and Hurricanes, it’ll be a terrific opportunity too see more than just Brian Kelly at a podium addressing the media.

Even if this wasn’t airing on NBC, I’d be the first to shill for a project like this. As someone that listens to NFL Films soundtracks for enjoyment and has watched just about every episode of Hard Knocks in the history of the show, getting the inside treatment on a football program I spend hours a day trying to dig into by NFL Films is a treat. It’s a tremendous opportunity for everyone from beat reporters to casual fans to see what life is like for the Fighting Irish during this resurgent season.

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[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BrKE5FP_GUQ&w=640&h=360%5D