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SB Nation Reacts: A schedule makeover for the Notre Dame football program

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Rotations are the future

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Notre Dame v Michigan State Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images

Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NCAA. Each week, we send out questions to the most plugged-in Notre Dame Fighting Irish fans, and fans across the country. Sign up here to join Reacts.

Scheduling news for the Notre Dame football program has been a big part of the fan conversation for years, and even as we head into the summer, we find ourselves debating all sorts of “schedule” stuff as kickoff times are released and networks scramble for a piece of the Fighting Irish.

We are here to continue that conversation — and throw a little gas on the fire as well.

The biggest change to the Notre Dame football schedule over the last decade is their agreement with the ACC. When the Irish left the Big East with all of their other sports, they needed a home, and the ACC gave them a great landing spot. The deal, however, did include football as well — even as the Irish remain Independent. That deal meant 5 games a year with ACC programs. Sometimes that means 6 games and sometimes that means 4 games, but it all averages out to the 5 agreed upon games.

To my surprise, over 80% of Notre Dame fans say they are happy with the current agreement with the ACC.

Because of the ACC deal, Notre Dame had to change its historical scheduling patterns with the Big 10 conference. The three teams most impacted were the Michigan State Spartans, Purdue Boilermakers, and Michigan Wolverines. All 3 were considered “rivalry games,” but Purdue had become just the in-state school that Notre Dame played every year.

Personally, I miss the hell out of the Sparty series and hope at some point an agreement can be made to play more regularly. When Notre Dame fans were asked, however, it was the Wolverines that they hoped would return to the schedule every year.

And that leads to the part of the schedule that remains unchanged — unfortunately. Notre Dame still continues their Wookie life debt with the Navy Midshipmen. Over the years I have evolved from absolute cancelling of the season, to a proposed rotation with Navy, Air Force, and Army. To my surprise — again — I see that this proposal has begun to change hearts and minds everywhere, and now a majority of Notre Dame fans polled would like to see this rotation.

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