Navy announced a 2 p.m. Dublin time start for its Sept. 1 showdown with Notre Dame, meaning fans in Annapolis will have to wake up at 9 a.m. to catch the action. CBS will air the contest, which will serve as a lead-in to a busy opening Saturday of college football.
Not quite ready for some football just yet? Here are four news bites to get you in the mood:
1. Spring update: Click here for the official spring game roundup, including video clips. Blue earned a 21-0 win over Gold, with incoming starting quarterback Trey Miller rushing for two touchdowns. Miller, a junior, is linked to Notre Dame in a way he might rather forget — his first collegiate start came last season against the Irish in a 56-14 loss.
2. Stadium setup: The Sept. 1 showdown in Ireland will be the second Navy-Notre Dame game hosted by that nation. Navy fell 54-27 at Dublin’s Croke Park in 1996. This year’s game will be played at Aviva Stadium, which opened in 2010 and seats 50,000. Check here for some facts and figures, including some details on a “‘state of the art’ beer system” that can dispense a pint in four seconds. Priorities.
3. Quick history: Since the teams have months to reshuffle and strategize, let’s get a few facts out of the way that won’t change between now and kickoff: Notre Dame leads the all-time series 72-12-1 and has handed Navy the most defeats by any school. Notre Dame won the first game 19-6 in 1927 and would later reel off a 43-game win streak that was snapped in 2007 thanks to a 46-44 triple-overtime thriller. Coach Ken Niumatalolo is 2-2 against the Irish; only Wayne Hardin has led Navy to three wins over Notre Dame as a head coach.
4. Hosts with the most: It’s not what you’d call a “home game” for anybody, but Navy will play host to the Irish in Ireland. History’s full of home games against Notre Dame on the road, taking advantage of larger stadiums to create a big-ticket college football showcase. Other host cities include Baltimore (1927 and many times since), Chicago (1928, complete with cool poster), Cleveland (throughout the 1930s and 40s, and again in the mid-70s), Philadelphia, New York (well, East Rutherford, N.J., at both the old and new stadiums), Washington (well, outside D.C. at what’s now FedEx Field) and Orlando, Fla. Head here for a city-by-city, stadium-by-stadium breakdown.