U of M Makes Long Term Deal with Notre Dame

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Michigan and Notre Dame, which played each other in football only twice from 1909 to 1977, agreed Monday to continue to play each other annually through 2031.

The schools were scheduled to meet each season through 2011. They agreed Monday to a 20-year contract extension.

"We are thrilled that the series between two premier college football programs will continue uninterrupted for the next 25 years," Michigan Athletic Director Bill Martin said in a release.

The schools are 1-2 in wins and winning percentage in college football. Michigan is 860-282-36 with a .745 winning percentage, while Notre Dame is 821-269-42 with a .744 winning percentage. Michigan leads the all-time series 19-14-1.

"It is a game our players and alumni, and every college football fan, deserves," Michigan coach Lloyd Carr said. "I am ecstatic they were able to come to an agreement."

The rivalry dates back to 1877, when some Michigan students taught the game to Notre Dame students. There was so much bad blood between the two schools, though, they stopped playing after the Irish earned their first victory in 1909 after eight straight losses.

The schools played again in 1942 and 1943, splitting the games, before resuming the series in 1978. Since then, they have met in all but six years.

Notre Dame Coach Charlie Weis, who never saw the Irish play the Wolverines while he was a student at Notre Dame, called the announcement great news.

"This rivalry is good for both schools and college football," he said.


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