This one’s been in the works for a while, but finally came to fruition today: Notre Dame and Georgia will play a home-and-home series in 2017 and 2019, the schools announced Wednesday.
Notre Dame will host Georgia on Sept. 9, 2017 and head to Athens on Sept. 21, 2019. Start making travel arrangements for these games, since they’re going to be pretty great. Georgia and Notre Dame have only met once, in the 1981 Sugar Bowl, so these games will be each school’s first trip to the other’s campus.
For Notre Dame, it gives Jack Swarbrick, Brian Kelly & Co. the SEC measuring stick they’ve focused on since releasing the team’s 2014-2016 schedules. In 2017, Notre Dame will play the Big Ten (at Michigan State), SEC (Georgia), Pac-12 (at Stanford, USC) and ACC (to be determined); in 2019 the Irish are scheduled to play the SEC, Pac-12, ACC and Big 12 (at Texas).
“As our football schedules evolved with the start of our Atlantic Coast Conference competition in 2014, we had future games slated with top-drawer opponents in virtually all the major conferences,” Swarbrick said in a statement. “One exception was the Southeastern Conference, so we are pleased now to be able to check that box. These will be two contests that will have great national appeal, in part because our only previous matchup came in a bowl game.”
As an aside, kudos to both these programs for working this series out as a home-and-home and not a one-off neutral site game in, say, Atlanta or Chicago. The atmospheres in South Bend and Athens are going to be incredible for both these contests.