CBS had previously announced an SEC doubleheader for that Saturday, with games to be played at 3:30 or 8 p.m. It’s the Tiffany Network’s one primetime game each season, so it’s zero surprise that they’ve decided to air a game between two possibly Top 10 teams.
Brad Nessler, Gary Danielson and Jamie Erdahl will handle announcing duties for the game at Sanford Stadium.
So, does the later kickoff affect the Irish’s performance? That’s impossible to determine, although we can rely on history to say Notre Dame often struggles in primetime games against ranked teams.
The Irish are 26-26 in games since 1998 that kickoff at 8 p.m. Eastern or later, which is Nielsen’s definition of primetime.
Of the 52 games that kicked during primetime in the 21 year period, just 17 have been games in which both the Irish and their opponent were ranked. The Irish have won just five of those games — against the 2002 Air Force Falcons, the 2012 Michigan State Spartans, the 2012 Oklahoma Sooners, the 2015 Temple Owls and the 2018 Virginia Tech Hokies.
Brian Kelly is 15-10 (.600) in primetime games. Of those games, 11 came against ranked opponents. Kelly is 4-7 against ranked opponents in primetime, beating #8 Oklahoma in 2012, #10 Michigan State in 2012, #21 Temple in 2015 and #24 Virginia Tech in 2018 and losing to the #2 Alabama Crimson Tide in 2013, #2 Florida State Seminoles in 2014, #4 Stanford Cardinal in 2011, #7 Miami-Florida Hurricanes in 2017, #12 Clemson Tigers in 2015, #17 Michigan Wolverines in 2013 and #20 Stanford in 2017.
Nessler has previously called at least nine Irish games: eight for ABC and one for ESPN. The Irish were 5-4 in those games, with wins against the Florida State Seminoles (2002), Michigan (2005), Washington Huskies (2005), Purdue Boilermakers (2009) and USC Trojans (2010) and losses to Michigan (2007), Michigan State (2008 and 2010) and North Carolina Tar Heels (2008).
Danielson was the color commentator on the Irish’s 1990 loss to the Penn State Nittany Lions (on ESPN), the 2001 loss to the Nebraska Cornhuskers, the 2002 win over the Maryland Terrapins, the 2002 win over Michigan State, the 2003 loss to Michigan, and the 2005 loss to the Ohio State Buckeyes. (All ABC)
He was also color for the Irish’s 2010 Sun Bowl win over Miami and the Emerald Isle Classic win over the Navy Midshipmen in 2012 for CBS.