IU to face Notre Dame in 2030, 2031

Indiana has scheduled an in-state program for its future non-conference schedule — and it isn’t the likes of Ball State.

Far from it.

The Hoosiers will face what’s been regarded as the most dominant program within state lines, Notre Dame, in 2030 and 2031.

The first game will be at Notre Dame Stadium on Aug. 31, 2030. The second game will come to Bloomington on Sept. 27, 2031.

“I’m looking forward to facing one of the most storied programs in the history of college football,” IU coach Tom Allen said in a statement.

When the games are finally played, it will mark nearly four decades since the two state schools faced one another. IU last played Notre Dame on Sept. 7, 1991. The Fighting Irish won that contest, 49-27.

The all-time series, which dates back to 1898, favors Notre Dame, 23-5-1. IU won two out of the first three games, as well as four of the first seven. But since a 0-0 tie in 1907, IU lost all but one contest, a 20-7 win in Bloomington on Oct. 21, 1950.

That’s the last time Notre Dame played in Bloomington, as the final six contests — all IU losses — were played in South Bend. Before that meeting in 1991, IU and Notre Dame last met in 1958.

In the years that followed, IU and Notre Dame established very different football traditions. The Fighting Irish have won 11 national championships, and they sit in the top 5 all-time in wins among FBS programs. Notre Dame last appeared in the national title game in 2012, and the Irish were participants in the College Football Playoff last season, falling to Alabama, 31-14, in the semis.

IU still sits in the lead for the most losses in FBS football history, but the Hoosiers have made gains in recent years. Allen’s program posted an eight-win season in 2019, and the Hoosiers followed that up with top-10 rankings during a historic 2020 campaign. Two years in a row, IU has appeared in January bowl games.

While these Notre Dame contests won’t be played this decade, they do indicate an advance in the Hoosiers’ ambitions on the football field. IU has some recently successful programs on the non-conference docket for the coming years, including Cincinnati in 2021 and 2022 and Louisville in 2023, 2024, and 2025.

Notre Dame is just at another level.

“It’s tremendous for the state of Indiana and for our fans,” Allen said, “and it will be a great opportunity for our players.”

11 comments

  1. Well, if TA remains IU’s coach and IU’s recruiting continues to improve, these two games could be very exciting. Memorial Stadium will certainly be filled for the game in Bloomington.

  2. 10 years until I get my Lucky Charms? Seriously? I knew it was difficult to “catch me leprechaun,” but this is ridiculous.

  3. This is great news for the IUFB program. Anyone think Coach Allen won’t have the Hoosiers focused for ND. What a broad, bold opportunity to build the brand. Hope I’m around to enjoy it.

  4. Watched that game on NBC. Dick Enberg (former IU student broadcaster and just retired, Bill Walsh,…”oh my”) did the game. Vaughn Dunbar and company were entertaing and competitive. Too bad I’ll be dead when this finally resumes. This should have been a 2 for 1 annual matchup all these years. Even if IU would have likely been a double digit dog. Losing, or possibly even pulling out a rare win on national TV to Our Lady in a competitive game is far more valuable than drubbing ‘Directional State’.

  5. Sorry Brad, but I disagree. For most of the last 30 years, IU playing ND would have benefitted neither program. Playing IU in FB would have provided no value to ND and IU would have gotten crushed, further damaging the program. The fact that ND has now agreed to play a game in Bloomington suggests that ND’s Athletic Department believes that IU FB’s status has been and will continue to be elevated significantly.

    I remember Lou Holtz, while leaving ND’s field after the first half, with the game pretty close saying something like, “hey, they give scholarships too.”

    1. PO: I guess I only partially understand your point. Purdue, before being dropped, was pretty competitive for many years. If nothing else, IU’s recruiting would have benefitted: “You’ll be playing Notre Dame each year, young man”. With a 2/1 home-home venue the revenue would’ve been great…IU fans would actually be excited about a pre conference game every 3 years. Losing to ND is a lot more palatable than to Ball State.

  6. It is time ND agreed to games with IU again but I understand why they haven’t. Now that IU is becoming even better each year they have reason to play IU now. I hope I am still around , I will be 75 by the time they play, to watch our Hoosiers play ND and beat the Irish.

  7. Finally, somebody listened to me. As a bonus, now I’ve got a great reason to put the kabosh on my Euro-wife’s plan for me to retire in her home country.

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