Notre Dame AD expresses interest in scheduling Alabama, Auburn
Thanks to the efforts of two of the most-respected athletic directors in the country, Arkansas (led by Jeff Long) and Notre Dame (led by Jack Swarbrick) recently announced an exciting home-and-home series to be played in 2020 and 2025. The Razorbacks are scheduled to make the first road trip to South Bend in 2020, with the Fighting Irish making the return visit to Fayetteville in 2025.
Unlike most marque non-conference games scheduled in the last several years, the series is unique in that each program will get a home game against one another, instead of the more common neutral site games popping up each and every year. The future series will mark the first two games between the storied football programs.
In an interview with Laken Litman of the Indianapolis Star, Swarbrick claims that creating the first contests between the two schools was part of the interest in scheduling the Razorbacks. In fact, if Swarbrick gets his way, Notre Dame could be playing Alabama, Auburn, and potentially Mississippi State and Kentucky in the future.
Here’s an excerpt from Litman’s story:
Alabama is one of those opponents we would love to play. I hope we do get that done. It was interesting to see the list of teams we’ve never played (from the SEC, which include Mississippi State, Auburn and Kentucky). I frankly didn’t know it. I have a great relationship with the Auburn athletic director (Jay Jacobs), and I’d love to figure out how to do that. There’s something to be said for ticking off everyone on that list until you can say you’ve done it over the history of this program.
In the story, Swarbrick mentions that Notre Dame already annually plays two teams from the Pac-12 and is contracted to play ACC teams each and every season. Given those facts, Notre Dame is actively seeking to add potential Big 12 and SEC opponents to fill out its schedule.
While the agreement between Notre Dame and Arkansas is exciting, it appears more SEC vs. Fighting Irish games could soon be on the horizon.